Phirni is a traditional Indian dessert made with fine ground rice, milk and sugar cooked to thick consistency and served chilled in earthen pots. This close cousin of Indian Rice Kheer is usually flavored with cardamom, saffron and topped with toasted or fried nuts. It can be made quickly and requires few ingredients. Poori (deep fried wheat bread) and Phirni is a heavenly combination which my mother use to serve as a break fast during my childhood.
To trick my little one to eat this Phirni, I had to come up with something new and colorful with this recipe. I added some white chocolate and gave vanilla flavor to the pudding which made it irresistibly delicious. I added some almonds to the ground rice paste to increase its nutritional value. Fresh pomegranate sauce made with arils gave lovely color and fresh flavor to the pudding. Pomegranate is very under rated fruit but it has perfect sweet and sour taste to make a delicious sauce to be used on any dessert. Try this recipe which is a sure shot hit and let me know how you like it. I would love to hear from you.
White Chocolate Phirni/Rice Pudding
Milk: 500 ml, (I used 2%. Can use whole milk for richer taste)
Basmati Rice: 3 tbsp, soaked in water for 30 mins
Almonds: 10-12, soaked over-night and skin removed or simply blanced
Brown Sugar: 1/4 cup (Any sweetener)
White Chocolate: 1/4 cup
Vanilla Extract: 1/2 tsp
- Wash the rice in plenty of water and soak it for at least 30 minutes. Make a fine paste of the rice along with skinned almonds by mixing with two tablespoons of the milk in a blender and set aside.
- In a heavy bottomed wide pan, bring the milk to boil along with brown sugar.
- Lower the heat to medium and add in the rice and almond paste by stirring continuously to avoid lumps.
- Cook the rice paste by stirring frequently to avoid burning at the bottom of the pan. Takes 15 minutes on medium heat.
- When the milk thickens add in vanilla extract and white chocolate and cook for a minute.
- Switch off the flame and transfer to another bowl and stir for a minute to let it cool quickly.
- Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or over night. You may see a thin film form on the top of Phirni during cooling process, just mix it with whisk and it will be fine.
- Serve chilled with chilled pomegranate sauce on the top and chopped almonds.
Fresh Pomegranate Juice: 1.5 cups
Honey: 2 tbsp
Cornstarch: 1 tsp (Optional)
Water: 2 tbsp
- In a sauce pan, bring the juice and honey to boil and reduce to half.
- Add cornstarch and water to make slurry and add to the juice to thicken. This step is optional. You can serve the Phirni with reduced sauce as is.
- Chill it for at least one hour before serving.
- Top the Phirni with this sauce or mix it.