10 Tips To Make Payesh: Master The Rice Pudding Recipe At Home

Traditional Indian rice pudding, known as "payesh," is cherished for its pleasant flavour and cosy texture. Its creamy texture comes from cooking rice in milk and adding sugar to sweeten it. Aroma is added by the fragrant scent of saffron or cardamom. Payesh is a dessert made on special occasions in Indian homes for festivals, festivities, and special events. 

Occasions like birthdays, marriages, pujas, etc. are also considered special and feature this creamy delight for dessert. Its preparation is regarded as a sign of spreading sweetness and delight, as well as good fortune. 

Here are some easy tips and tricks to prepare Payesh

Video Credit: YouTube/ bharatzkitchen HINDI

1. Selection Of Rice:

Selecting high-quality rice is essential to making the ideal Payesh. Choose basmati or short-grain rice like Gobindobhog, which lends a distinct floral aroma and is the reason for the creamy texture that comes from absorbing the milk. As the rice cooks, the starch is released gradually to enhance the richness of this dessert. 

2. Use Full-Fat Milk:

For a thick, creamy payesh, use whole milk. The rich texture and decadent flavour of the dessert are enhanced by the fat content of whole milk. To increase the sweetness and richness quotient, combine condensed and whole milk in equal parts. A delectable payesh is built on top of high-quality milk, which guarantees a great dessert experience.

3. Simmer The Payesh On Low Heat:

Be patient while simmering to get the best payesh possible. To ensure that the rice in the milk has a creamy texture without burning, you can also stir the payesh between intervals using low heat. Rice stays fluffy when stirred frequently, preventing it from sticking to the bottom. Let the milk slowly seep into the rice for the best possible flavour infusion. 

4. 7Gradually Add Sugar In Parts:

To achieve the optimal balance in cooking the payesh, sweeten it very slowly. Gradually add sugar or jaggery (jaggery is unrefined sugar made from sugarcane or date palms) and keep stirring until it completely dissolves before you give it a taste. Add sugar gradually in accordance with your taste, which can give you the desired result of enjoying a tasty Payesh.

5. Use Aromatics:

Use aromatic spices such as saffron or cardamom. Crush the cardamoms and put them in the boiling pot. Soak the saffron threads in tempered milk and then mix them into payesh. The harmonious flavour of this traditional Indian rice pudding is marked by the charming traces of floral tones that not only lift the taste but also add colour to the dish.

6. Use of Nuts and Raisins:

Toasted cashews and almonds can be added for the nutty flavour and crunch. Raisins can be rehydrated when they are soaked in warm water; therefore, it is easier to plump them up and make them juicier before adding to the dessert. The experience of enjoying a spoonful of rice pudding made in the traditional Indian way can be easily elevated with a few simple steps in mind.  

7. Observe the Consistency:

When preparing Payesh, observe the consistency closely. To achieve the perfect texture, simmer the rice in milk on low heat, allowing it to gradually absorb the liquid. Stir frequently to prevent sticking, ensuring even cooking. Add more milk if needed to attain the desired creamy consistency. Patience and attention to detail are essential for a velvety and satisfying Payesh.

8. Let it Cool:

For the preparation of payesh, proper refrigeration is essential. Before putting the rice pudding in the refrigerator, let it cool naturally at room temperature. This slow cooling helps in forming a thick layer of cream on top that is most enjoyed in the dessert. Cover it tightly after cooling to preserve flavours and freshness. Cooling the Payesh improves its flavour and makes for a delightfully cool dessert experience.

9. Serve it Cool:

It's important to serve Payesh cold to bring out its flavours. Once this delicious rice pudding is prepared, let it cool to room temperature before storing it in the refrigerator. Not only does chilling improve flavour, but it also helps the dessert solidify and get creamy. Payesh is a delightful and refreshing dessert that is ideal for celebrating special occasions or capping off a meal when served cold.

10. Garnish it:

Use inventive garnishes to enhance the presentation and create an alluring payesh. For crunch, add slivered nuts (almonds or pistachios), sprinkle edible rose petals for a fragrant finish, or a few strands of saffron for a bright colour. These easy garnishes improve your payesh's flavour and appearance.