One thing about Indian food that never fails to amaze me, is the diversity in the cuisines of individual states and sub regions. How we all share the love towards food and let our lives revolve around it.. How we all love to celebrate our culture and traditions weaving around this eternal love and how we keep our basic dishes the same yet they all are so different in taste and textures. Isnt it absolutely amazing?
If you are from north side of India, you must have had the most popular and common dessert of all- Kheer. Kheer or kheera or kheerni as it is called in different regions, is an Indian rice pudding made using, well rice and milk. Some add nuts to it, some add saffron or cardamom, just to bring in extra flavours and make it more rich than it already is.
Some more South Indian recipes-> Chana dal Dosa | Curd rice with cucumber | Onion uttapam | Instant spinach Idli | Cauliflower sambhar | Beetroot Sambar | Lemon rice | Shallot sambar | Soft sponge dosa
Payasam is for south India what kheer is for us northerners. Basic rice pudding where they use jaggery instead of sugar (in most cases) and usually any type of lentil is added to make it healthier and richer in texture and taste. There is a wide range of payasams with different recipes and lentils. One such payasam is this green moong dhal payasam which is as healthy as it is tasty. And it gets ready in under 30 minutes.
Adding lentils make payasam rich in proteins and since jaggery is added instead of sugar, it is high in iron as well. Coconut milk also contributes in the sweetness, making this dessert a fairly healthy dessert with a balanced mix of carbs, proteins and iron. This is the reason I love to have payasams for breakfast time when the metabolism is high and eating sweet do less harm to the body.
Payasams are usually prepared for Pooja/Neivedhyam purposes or festivals like Diwali, Navratri, Pongal, Onam etc. You could also add some milk to the recipe or skip coconut milk entirely as per your taste and preference. This is a Tamil speciality and is known as Arisi paruppu payasam in local language.
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More kheer recipes-