Paal Payasam/Rice Kheer to say "Happy B'day Sunitha" !

Dear Sunitha,

I wish for you to have people to love, people in your life who will care about you as much as I do. Happy birthday dear !

Dear Readers,

I wanted to make something special for Sunitha to wish her on her birthday and to let her know how special she is to me .So here is her favorite payasam and I would love to share this virtual treat with her and also with you all. I hope you all will join me in wishing her a very happy Birthday.

Everyone in my family likes pal payasam and I'm sure you will also love it. I am giving you the easiest and simple pressure cooker method and the original method.Believe me, both tastes the same. But it is all up to you, whether to follow the contemporary or authentic approach:-)


Red Rice (unakkalari) - 1/2 Cup
Milk (whole milk)- 5 Cups
Sugar- 1 Cup
Ghee (optional)- 2 tsp

In pressure cooker:

1.Clean the rice by rubbing it on a cloth.If you are a cleanliness freak, wash the rice (quickly, don't soak it even for a minute!) and dry it completely before making payasam.
2.Throw in everything together in a cooker and let it boil, without the weight on.
3.When the steam starts coming keep the weight on and reduce the heat to medium low/simmer.
4.Let it sit on this heat for about 40 minutes.(no single whistle during this time)
5.Switch off the heat and let it sit for at least 2 hours before opening and transferring the payasam to serving dish.The more you keep the more pink color you will get.

On Stove Top:

1.Clean the rice as I have explained above.
2.Heat the ghee in a thick bottom pan and trow in the rice to saute for 4-5 minutes on medium heat.
3.Add 3 cups of milk and 1 cup of water and let it boil.
4.Once the milk starts boiling reduce the heat and let the rice cook well, but not mushy.This takes about 30-40 minutes depending on the variety of rice you use.
5.When the water is almost absorbed, add the sugar and keep stirring till you get a clear path behind the spatula you use to stir.This takes about 15 minutes on medium low heat.The more the time the more tastier it will get .(Then you should keep it on medium low heat )
6.Pour the remaining milk slowly after keeping the heat on medium high and let it boil after each addition.
7..If you want to have more watery consistency then you may add more milk.


1. The authentic recipe doesn't call for any cardamom, cashews or raisins.But feel free to use it.
2.You could replace the red rice with Basmati/Sona Masoori/Long Grain rice varieties.But you will not get the dark pink color.
3.After preparing the payasam gets thicker once it cools down. You could adjust the consistency at any time by adding boiled milk into the payasam.

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