Category Archives: Dessert

Paneer Kheer / Chena Kheer / Cottage Cheese Pudding

OMG I had such a hectic weekend… Scroll down to the recipe if you don’ want to read this longgggg story of how my weekend unfolded.

My car broke down in the middle of the road late Friday night while my husband was out of town and I was on my way to Target to buy a serving dish for Masterchef (lol I have high hopes ;-), but shouldn’t we all). Masterchef was coming to Kansas City for the open casting call the next morning & I seriously wanted to go see what the experience would be like and learn from the other contestants. You know to get an idea & see how long they have been cooking etc & how I would fair and what I could learn from it all. I am all about the learning 😉 well and winning but learning too! hehe. I try and learn or attempt one new thing every month as a life rule, so this was going to be ‘one’ for the month of October 2013.

So the next morning I got my car towed and a friend helped me get to the Mechanic, sadly the mechanic wasn’t done till 4:30 pm to tell me that there was no ‘fuel’ in my car!!! Seriously, what a riot for no gas. Apparently my fuel gauge was not working so it was showing that I had a full tank! (Now this time it wasn’t my fault for driving it empty, lol).

But regardless in the mean time in between trips to the mechanic & studying & an online Tajweed class (I am getting my BA in Islamic Studies at Islamic Online University) I made Paneer Kheer for the casting call and managed to cool it down quickly. I got my car and was home by 5:30 pm to pick up my kheer and head to the city which is approximately 20 mins away depending on traffic, etc (I knew it was a lost cause but I am always willing to try). I got there by 5:50pm but I couldn’t find parking when I finally did I couldn’t find the entrance… Try finding an entrance for a casting call when the line is not there! Oh well the hotel people finally let me in from another entrance but sadly I couldn’t see anyone there from casting team… I guess they were all gone. But no worries I got to eat my wonderful kheer, and so did my husband & a couple of our friends (my husband ate most of it so I had very little to share, lol) but Alhamdullilah (Praise be to God) I am truly a happy girl :).

In the mean time I made a new friend while I was stranded on the road… A couple of nice people stopped to ask me if I needed help and were really kind. A beautiful person stayed with me through out the ordeal and even asked her husband (who was probably happily at home) to come help me out. Overland Park, KS have really nice people (& I do love it here). Since I am new in town I am truly glad that I have gotten to know one more person living close by…

Thank you to Gayle and Steve Rice, my friends Mehwish and Sameera and their wonderful husbands for helping me out. It was a fun late night party on the middle of the road (& no, no cops showed up to break it off 😉 )

Now I just have a few days left in October to try out something new! Wish me luck!

So here goes the recipe for Paneer Kheer 🙂 Enjoy.

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Ingredients:
8 cups of Whole Milk – divided into 2 parts.
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
½ cup sugar (or as per taste)
A pinch of Saffron
1 packet of any sweetener (or regular white powdered sugar)
2 to 3 Green Cardamom – crushed to make powder or (¼ tsp cardamom powder)
4 – 5 Cashew Nuts – crushed
Pistachios to garnish

Cookware needed:
Cheesecloth
1 Non-stick pan or Enamel based cookware
1 Steel pan

Method:
In a steel pan add 4 cups of milk and bring to a boil (stirring occasionally).
As the milk boils add the lemon juice and let the milk curdle (to make paneer).
Once you see a yellowish whey you know your paneer is ready.
Switch off the stove and strain the paneer in a cheesecloth.
Pour cold water over the paneer, tie and let it sit in the cheesecloth for 30 minutes.

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In the mean time use a non-stick pan or an enamel based pan and boil the other 4 cups of milk (stirring occasionally)
Grind saffron and one packet of the sweetener and add to the boiling milk.
Cook this milk on low flame till it has been reduced to half (stirring occasionally).

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Remove the paneer from the cheesecloth and grind it in a food processor if desired. This will give it a smoother texture. (You do not need to this step but I wanted it crushed and smoothed out).

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Add the Paneer to the milk mixture and sugar and bring to a boil (stirring occasionally).
In the same food processor add the cashew nuts and grind to bits.
Add the cashew nuts to the kheer (paneer milk mixture) and cook for a few minutes. (stirring occasionally).
Grind cardamom and add the crushed powder (add this last as the flavor will be stronger then and won’t cook out).
Bring the kheer to a boil and turn off heat.

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Chill before serving.
Garnish with chopped pistachios.

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Pomegranate Coconut Barfi

omg I am going Pomegranate crazy in my house right now next few recipes are all going to entail pomegranate so bear with me.

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Ingredients:
2 cups desiccated shredded coconut
1 cup sugar
½ cup Cream – (I used 2% milk)
2 to 3 Saffron Strands
2 Green Cardamom pods – crushed
½ a pomegranate
1 packet of Splenda or regular sugar
1 tsp of Clarified butter / ghee
Cashew nuts for garnish

Method:
Crush the cardamom pods with Splenda and the saffaron strands grind to a nice powder.
Add the Pomegranate to it and crush well.
Set aside.
In the meantime in a non-stick heavy bottom pan, add the desiccated coconut, sugar and milk and mix well. Cook for a minute or two.

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Add the crushed pomegranate mixture and cook the coconut and pomegranate mixture for a few minutes. Cook till the coconut starts to change color.
Once the coconut has turned slightly brown turn off flame and set aside.

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Grease the dish you want the barfi to set in with ghee or butter and quickly transfer the coconut – pomegranate barfi to the greased dish.
Garnish with cashew nuts – try to push it in a bit so it sets along with the barfi.
Let it cool to room temperature and cut into pieces.
For quicker cooling, place it in the refrigerator for an hour.

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Rava Kesari – Sooji ka halwa (Semolina Dessert)

Ingredients:
½ tbs of butter
2 tbs of Ghee
5 – 6 almonds crushed (you can use more)
Handful of raisins (you can use more)
2 cups of Rava (Sooji – Semolina)
2 cups of sugar (or as per taste)
4-1/4 cups of water

Method:
In a non-stick pan add the butter and ghee and let it melt.
Add the crushed almonds and raisins and cook till raisins balloon up.

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Add the sooji and roast till a nice aroma emits and it turns lightly brown.
Add the sugar and mix it well.

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Once the sugar and sooji has been mixed well add the water to it and stir continuously.
Add saffron mixed with a few tablespoons of water and mix it well.
You can add kesari color to the sooji/rava halwa as well.

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Mix well and cook till all the water dries up.
Cover and keep for a few minutes.
It’s best to let it cool down in the container you wish for it to be served as it will solidify and form the shape of the container.
Serve hot!

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Enjoy! ☺

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Mango Mousse – Shrikhand

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Ingredients:
1 cup Mango Pulp
8 oz, Cream Cheese – at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar (or to taste)
1/2 a cup of Sour Cream
1/2 a cup of Cool Whip
A pinch of Saffron (Kesar)
4 – 5 Cardamoms ground up without shell.

In a food processor pulse all the ingredients together starting with the Mango pulp and cream cheese. Adding the rest of the ingredients one by one, in the order provided.

Transfer into a serving dish and allow to set in the refrigerator for a couple of hours before serving.

Garnish with chopped almonds or pistachio.

Happy Eating!

Recipe adopted from Show Me the Curry.

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