Vegan Kheer (Indian Rice Pudding)
Kheer is one of my favorite Indian desserts but it is traditionally made with Dairy. I created this recipe for my boyfriend Jacob, as he is a vegan and I wanted him to be able to enjoy Kheer as much as I do!
2 cup of Oat Milk (I recommend using the brand Oatly)
1 cup of Basmati Rice of any other long grain rice
1/4 cup of Sugar
1 Cinnamon Stick
4-5 Green Cardamom Pods
1 large pinch of good Saffron
Slivered Almonds or Pistachios to garnish
Begin by soaking your rice in warm water for about 20-30 min. This will soften the rice and help it cook faster. Once your rice is ready, in a medium sized sauce pan, go ahead and add your oat milk, rice, and cinnamon stick and bring your mixture to a boil. Be sure to constantly stir your Kheer to avoid burning. Oat milk naturally thickens when it is heated up...as if you were making a bowl of oatmeal, so if you feel that your mixture is too runny, I promise it will thicken on its own. Once your mixture has been brought to a boil, turn down the heat to a simmer and add in your saffron and cardamom pods. The saffron will give your Kheer a beautiful yellow color. It is important to use good saffron for this as wild saffron can make your Kheer taste bitter. Keep stirring your Kheer until the rice has fully cooked. You can check this by lifting a few grains of rice on your spoon and smash the rice using your fingers. You will know that the rice has fully cooked when you are able to do so.
Once your rice has cooked, go ahead and add in your sugar. Stir your Kheer until the sugar has desolved. You will notice that your Kheer will thicken really fast once the sugar has been added. Once you have reached a nice consistency, turn off your gas and let the Kheer cool down a bit. Once the Kheer has cooled a bit, remove the whole spices.
At this point, you can either serve it up hot, or chill it in the refrigerator and eat it nice and cold. If you decide to chill your kheer, you may find that it solidifies a bit. This is not a problem at all. When you are ready to eat it, mix in a few tablespoons of oat milk until it is nice and silky again. Top your Kheer with slivered almonds, a sprinkle of saffron, and cardamom if you would like. You can also use pistachios depending on your taste.
I hope you guys like this vegan version of Kheer just as much as the traditional version!