Hey guys!!!Wait. Before you launch yourself into believing that I can cook, let me tell you this. I cannot. Well, I cannot do Masterchef level cooking. I can look at videos, cookbooks and manage to prepare a good meal but if you think I make all my fancy dishes through memory, you are highly mistaken.
Well, with that cleared and out of the the way, let’s get to the actual point of this post.
Phirni is basically a North Indian dessert/delicacy that has been exploited by the social media for it’s special appearances during Karva Chauth. However, this dessert which also like a younger and simpler brother of the Kheer or the Paayasam from the south, can be enjoyed anytime and anywhere. It takes about 20-30 minutes to cook and trust me when I say this, the measure of time is no indicator of the simplicity of this dish. You will need three basic ingredients to make some delish Phirni.
1. Rice – 1 cup
2. Milk – 1 litre
3. Sugar – 1 cup
Ofcourse there are versions of recipes that will require you to add cardamom, saffron, almonds and rose water. You can definitely add all that if you feel extra chef-y. But for the jugaad cooking that I resort to, I am good with the three ingredients I have.
Wash the rice three times in a bowl and drain the water. If you are not good at this, use a sieve or a thin cotton cloth because trying to drain out the water by cupping the hands near the bowl has only led to more rice grains draining instead of the water. I’m just giving some realistic advice here. After you are done washing, spread out the washed rice on a dry cotton towel and pat dry them. Now for the sligh technological twist in the tale. You need to grind the dry rice grains in a mixer grinder into a semi fine powder. The sand that is found at the construction sites in which we fondly played when we were little should make for a perfect reference for the consistency you would want to grind the rice to. It won’t take more than 30 seconds for you to grind.
Remember: no water! Just grind the rice into a semi fine powder.
Next, take the milk. All the 1000 millilitres of it and boil it on the stove. I am not going into much detail here because I am comfortably assuming you know how the boiled milk looks. After the milk is boiled, turn down the flame of the stove from high to the lowest setting and add the sugar. All of it.
Stir a little more.
After you are happy with the stirring and feel like a master chef, go back to the rice that you ground in the mixer and add it to the milk. And stir.
Keep stirring for some time now, to avoid the formation of any lumps that the powdered rice might cause. After about 2-3 minutes of stirring, put the lid on the milk-rice mixture and let it simmer on low flame. Don’t touch any setting on the stove. Let it cook for about 15 minutes after casually giving it a stir every 2 minutes so that the preparation won’t feel neglected.
After about 15 minutes of proper cooking and stirring and looking after, the milk will thicken and the rice will look cooked. How you can test whether it is completely cooked or not is to take a little Phirni on a spoon, blow it once or twice so it cools down and then taste it. If the rice still feels grainy, you can cook it a little longer, say 5 minutes. But as far as my jugaadu mind says, it should be done.
Turn off the heat. Take town the prepared Phirni and transfer it into individual serving bowls. These bowls will go into the fridge for cooling down for a couple of hours after which you can devour the geniusness of a dish that YOU cooked. If you lack the patience, you can eat it right out of the saucepan you cooked in. Your choice.
If at any point in the post, you felt like why grind the rice when I can put the whole grain in the milk and eat Kheer instead, I feel you. And I have the same doubt!
Until next time!
P.S. If you have any jugaad cooking suggestions for me, let me know in the comments or DM me on my social media. Love.