Phirni (Indian Ground Rice Pudding)

Served at festivals, Anjum Anand's adventurous take on ground rice pudding is fitting finale for a sparkling Diwali celebration
By Anjum Anand
Phirni (Indian Ground Rice Pudding)
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes plus chilling
  • Effort: easy


  • green cardamom, seeds only
  • 4 tbsp rice flour
  • 1 litres milk
  • 4-5 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp ground almonds
  • 1 tbsp chocolate

For the decoration

  • chocolate shavings
  • 1 tbsp shelled pistachio nuts, roughly chopped
  • gold leaf, optional


1. Pound the cardamom seeds to a fine powder, using a pestle and mortar.

2. Combine the rice flour with about 125ml of the milk. Pour the remaining milk into a heavy-based pan and add the rice flour mixture. Bring to a simmer, over a moderate heat, stirring constantly.

3. Once it starts to thicken, lower the heat and cook, stirring, until the pudding takes on the consistency of thick custard - this should take 5-6 minutes.

4. Stir in the sugar, cardamom, and ground almonds. Continue to cook until the sugar dissolves. Remove the pan from the heat, cool slightly and pour into martini glasses. You can also spoon the pudding into a big glass bowl.

5. Place in the fridge to set for 2-3 hours. Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a pan of barely simmering water. Spoon the chocolate over the set rice pudding and return to the fridge.

6. Decorate with chocolate shavings, pistachio nuts and a little gold leaf; serve chilled.

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