30 minute Kheer, an easy summer refresher

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So I will start this post off with the fact that Texas is at it’s peak heat (at least in my opinion). Now, it’s pretty well known that Texas is hot in the summer. However, now we are hitting triple digit temperatures.

To combat that, I plan on using this recipe that I developed. Kheer – or Indian rice pudding, is an easy, cheap and utterly refreshing dessert. Unlike traditional puddings, kheer is on the liquidy side, so it leaves you feeling cooled when you are done eating it. Also, one of the key ingredients of this pudding is cardamom. A sweet and citrusy spice, cardamom lends this dessert an exotic kick that blends perfectly with the milk. Just to add a little texture, I mixed in some sliced almonds to cut through the soft, almost mushy rice.

On one last note, in this recipe, I used a special type of rice that has already been pressed and flattened into a thin flake. You can use any type of rice for this, but in my case I had this on hand and thought it would break down nicely in this dish.

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups milk
  • 1/3 cup flattened rice, or 1/4 cup of any other type of rice
  • 1/4 cup sugar, you can add more if you wish after this dessert is chilled
  • 1 tbs ground cardamom powder (Try to find this at a Indian grocery store as this spice can be heavily overpriced in non-specialty stores.)
  • A few tbs to taste of sliced almonds or crushed pistachios

Step 1: Mix all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil while constantly stirring. It is essential to keep the milk moving over the heat or the fat in the liquid will burn.

Step 2: When the milk is at a heavy boil, reduce the heat to medium, stirring occasionally. Cook 15 to 20 minutes until the rice is fully cooked and starting to fall apart. You want the rice to be pretty soft and mushy as that will help thicken the milk slightly.

Step 3: When the kheer is fully cooked and has a texture similar to thin oatmeal, pull the pan from the heat. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Then, store the kheer in the fridge to cool fully. You want this ice cold.

Step 4: Serve with more nuts sprinkled on top.

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Roasted curry cauliflower with lemon yogurt sauce

curried cauliflower

Ever since I found a stray jar of curry powder sitting in the back of my pantry, I have been dumping the stuff in everything.

It really it a miracle spice. Why? Because it can make anything taste good. Not that I am saying cauliflower doesn’t taste good. However I do think that curry has so much flavor that you wouldn’t mind going meatless for a meal because of it.

Which is why I picked it for this recipe.

This is another dish I made with the idea in mind that people are currently trying to cut down on unhealthy food. Like the last post I did on cheat chocolate pudding, I wanted to make something so rich in flavor that you wouldn’t realize that it was pretty good for you.

Still want protein? That’s what the greek yogurt sauce is for. Also, I would not be against frying an egg or two and throwing them on top. In the end, this is a good way to increase your vegetable intake.

Ingredients

Roasted cauliflower

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into medium-sized florets
  • 1 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric, this helps boost the color
  • 2 tsp ghee, which is an Indian-style clarified butter. You can equally use generic unsalted butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Sauce

  • 1 individual cup of plain greek yogurt (about 2/3 cup)
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 tsp finely shopped parsley or mint
  • salt and pepper to taste

Step 1: Melt the ghee or butter. Add the curry powder, turmeric, garlic, salt and pepper.

Step 2: Put your cauliflower florets in a large bowl. Pour your ghee mixture evenly over them. Mix well and let sit to marinate for 30 minutes.

Step 3: Preheat your oven to 375 Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with foil. Give your cauliflower another good mix. Pour onto the baking sheet and distribute evenly. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Take the baking sheet out and turn all of the florets over, return to the oven. Bake another 10 minutes.

Step 4: While the cauliflower is baking, make the yogurt sauce. Mix all ingredients well, set aside.

Step 5: When the cauliflower is cooked, pull the baking sheet from the oven. All the florets should be tender and have patches of mild toast/burn marks. (It’s hard to tell if everything is golden brown because the cauliflower will already be yellow from the spice mix)

Step 6: Serve warm with yogurt sauce. Also, if you happen to have any Indian simmer sauces on hand, add a dribble. Hot sauce works just as well – a little extra heat is awesome in this recipe for those that like it.

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