Zaffrani Phirni or Kesari Phirni …whatever you like calling it…the fact remains that it tastes delectable…so soft and flavourful 😀
There is no real reason as to why I love this dessert which is so loved by everyone around me… Phirni is just something that I have eaten since I was a kid and it’s a familiar, comforting flavour. The aromas of milk being reduced with some cardamom and kesar / zaffran or saffron along with the soft texture of ground rice with a generous scattering of nuts is just too good to resist!
I guess this is one such dessert with is almost common across all cultures in India…‘dudhpak‘ in Gujarat, ‘payesh‘ in Bengal, ‘payasamm‘ in South India… ‘Kheer‘ in the North 😬 and ‘Phirni‘ particularly in the Punjab! Almost like ‘kheer’ but the texture and consistency of ‘phirni’ is different, more thick and sets well once chilled! That’s how it’s served, chilled in little earthen bowls. I believe, the earthenware somehow enhances the flavour of the ‘Phirni‘
I have been making this from the last 2-3 years and it always tastes great! Being a pretty straightforward recipe, there isn’t much prepping to do here…(But have used my mom’s tip for making it nice and thick)**. This is perfect to serve to your guests, or enjoy it like I do, making it with love for me & my dessert loving hubby 😘
Yield: 4-6 if you are using smaller earthenware bowl
Equipments: a large heavy bottomed pan, a grinder / blender, measuring cups /spoons.
500 ml milk (I used 3% fat Amul milk)
1 tsp green cardamom pwd (Chotti elaichi)
12-14 strands of saffron /kesar soaked in 3 tbsp of warm milk for 15 mins
6 tbsp dry rice coarsely ground in the blender without any water
1/2 cup water @ room temp
7 tbsp sugar (adjust as per your taste)
2 tsp rice flour dissolved in 2 tbsp of warm milk (thickens the phirni)**
7-8 nos slivered pistachios to garnish
a few strands of saffron /kesar to garnish
Boil milk in a large, heavy bottomed pan, once boiled, lower the heat. To this, add the soaked saffron /kesar & green cardamom pwd. Stir well. Now take 1/2 cup of water and mix the coarsely ground rice to it and mix well so that there aren’t lumps. Add this mixture to the boiled milk and stir well.
Cook for 5 mins and stir continuously as it cooks. Next, add the rice flour and milk mixture and again stir well. It’s crucial that there are no lumps at all. Now add the sugar and mix. Cook for 15 mins on low flame while stirring it continuously. Once done, turn off the gas. Let the ‘phirni‘ sit for 5 mins. Then pour into your serving bowls and garnish with slivers of pistachio and some strands of saffron/ kesar. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours before serving. Tastes best when chilled! 😊
Now, wasn’t that quick and easy!? You’ll love it 👍
Adapted from Sanjeev Kapoor’s cookbook Sweet Encounters