Many versions of rice pudding, or kheer, are made throughout India and also in many Middle Eastern countries. In southern India, cooks serve a similar sweetened rice dish called pongal to commemorate the rice harvest festival.
1/3 c. short-grain rice
5 to 7 almonds, blanched*
5 to 7 pistachios, blanched*
5 c. milk
1/2 c. sugar
1/4tsp. cardamom powder
1. Wash rice by placing it in a large saucepan and covering it with water. Drain water, being careful not to let rice float out. Repeat this process one more time. Then soak rice in water for 20 minutes.
2. Drain water and set rice aside.
3. Chop almonds and pistachios. Set aside.
4. In a large saucepan, heat half the milk over medium-high heat. Add rice and stir until the mixture boils.
5. Reduce heat and continue cooking the rice until almost all the milk is absorbed.
6. Add remaining milk, sugar, cardamom, pistachios, and almonds. Bring mixture back to a boil, stirring gently but continuously until pudding is thick and creamy.
7. Serve hot or cold.
Preparation time: 1 hour
*To blanch almonds or pistachios, put them in a bowl, pour boiling water over them, and let them sit for just a minute. Drain, then rub off the skins.You
can also buy nuts that have been blanched.
**To reduce the fat in this recipe, use 2 percent or skim milk rather than whole milk.