Appi payasa/payasam is one such dish learnt during a conversation with one of the cooks. Here is how "appi payasa" is made. A tight dough is made with cream of wheat. They are rolled & deep fried in ghee like pooris(Deep fried Indian bread). These pooris are crushed & added to the milk.
Though I don't have a sweet tooth, this is one of the kheer/payasam to which I can never say "no". Absolute delish!! It is also known as happala karda payasa (Thanks to blogger world!).
Preparation Time: 30 mins
Cooking Time: 15-20 mins
Ingredients: (Serves 4-6)
For the happala/flat poori:
- Cream of wheat/Chiroti Rava/Fine rava: 1 cup
- Cold water: Less than 1/4th cup
- Ghee/Clarified butter: 2 tsp
- Salt: a small pinch
- Ghee/Oil: As needed, for deep frying the pooris
For the payasa/kheer:
- Full cream milk: 1.5 litres
- Sugar: Around 3/4th cup, adjust according to your family needs
- Chopped dry fruits: 2 tbsp (I used almonds, cashews & pistachios)
- Saffron: a big pinch
Mix the cream of wheat, salt & ghee together.
Slowly add the cold water & make a stiff dough. Cover the dough & let it rest for at least a couple of hours. More the better...
Once the dough is well rested, divide the dough into big grape sized balls. I got 7 dough balls.
Dust a very little flour & roll it thin using a rolling pin. (just like a poori).
Heat the ghee/oil on a medium heat. When ghee is hot, deep fry the pooris on both the sides until golden brown. Remove it on a paper towel to remove the excess ghee from the fried pooris. Repeat with the remaining pooris. Let it cool.
Meantime, boil the milk on a med-high heat. Keep stirring in between. When the milk starts boiling, reduce the heat.
Add sugar & allow the sugar to dissolve.
When the sugar is dissolved, crush the saffron in between your palm & add it to the milk.
Crush or roughly tear the cooled pooris & slide them onto the boiling milk. Add the chopped nuts.
Turn off the heat & let the payasam cool completely.
Once cool, mash the crushed pooris gently.
You could serve this payasam, warm or cold.
I generally warm it again & serve as my family prefers it that way!
- It is very important to make a stiff dough to ensure crunchy pooris. Soft dough will absorb more ghee & become soggy.
- The more you rest the dough, the more elastic it becomes. It will be easier to handle a well rested dough. (You can see little cracks on the edges of my poori. That is because I did not rest the dough! Do not do that)
- Roll the pooris very thin. Thin pooris wont puff up & become soft. They will become crunchy!
- If your poori is still puffing up, gently prick it in 4-5 places with a tooth pick before frying them.
- This is unlike other kheer that demands milk quantity to be reduced by boiling. The crushed pooris will absorb the milk & the kheer/payasam thickens gradually.