Have you heard the story of an 'Ugly Duckling'?
This dish has a similar story. This one doesn't look great at all. Don't worry, it doesn't start looking bad and then turn out to be a beautiful dish. It remains an ugly duckling.
But, the taste is so awesome, you will forget entirely how not pretty this is to look. Agreed it is not a pretty cake with swirls of glaze or smooth icing. But, it is a comfort food and dessert in one. Plus, the goodness of nuts and poppy seeds will surely make you agree with 'Looks are not everything'.
Rice - 1/4 cup (I used basmati)
Cashews - 1/2 cup
Poppy Seeds - 1/4 cup
Sugar - 1/2 - 3/4 cup (3/4 cup is for major sweet tooth people)
Evaporated milk - 2 cans of 12 Oz each (Or use whole milk)
Water or milk - 2 cups (If you are using milk instead of evaporated milk, use milk here too. Since I used evaporated milk, I used water)
Cardamom - 4 pods seeds crushed
In a skillet, dry roast the rice. When they are golden, remove from heat and dump into a bowl filled with water. In the same skillet, start toasting the cashews. When they start turning golden, add poppy seeds to the same skillet and continue to toast till all the cashews are golden and poppy seeds are aromatic. Set aside. In a saucepan, boil 1 cup of water. When it starts boiling, drain the soaked rice and add to it. Let it cook. When the rice has cooked, add the evaporated milk (or whole milk). Let it come to a boil. Keep stirring. This will stick dangerously and burn.
Meanwhile, grind the toasted cashews and poppy seeds along with cardamom. Use about a cup of water or milk to make a smooth paste. You might not need the whole cup of milk or water. When the contents of the saucepan are boiling, add this ground paste and stir constantly for couple of minutes until all the paste lumps are broken and they all come together. Add sugar and lower the heat further. Keep it on low heat and stir occasionally. When it starts simmering, turn off the heat. It gets thicker once cool. It is not a very thick pudding to begin with. If you like thicker pudding, reduce the evaporated milk (milk) to get a thicker pudding.
To make this vegan, just use 2 cans of coconut milk and about a cup of water to grind the cashews and poppy seeds. It will be delicious.
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30 Minutes Meals: Gayathri Anand
Baked Goods: Monika,
For On Going Events: Gayathri Kumar, Usha
Kids Friendly: PJ, Savitha, Smitha, Srivalli, Veena Aravind
Rice Varieties: Champa, Divya, Padma