Rice-milk pudding (Doodh paank)

I am not sure how many of you had the same feelings, but even though I tried my best, I could not get into a Diwali mood this year. For me, Diwali means my dad bring out his colored light bulbs & akashgud/akash butti and tie them neatly on our front porch. Then in the evenings, we would light up small candles or oil lamps on the porch- ‘jaglee‘. Dad also bought us many crackers which we would burn after sunset. It used to be so much fun. For my brother and me, Diwali always signified this fun more than any special kind of food. Yes, we had followed many rituals like udak bharche, abhyanjana snana, gopooja, lakshmi pooja etc – but these were all moderately celebrated so that we loved being part of these.

When I was in India, even though I could not visit my parents every year during my college days, I got into Diwali mood around this time because of all the festivities going around. I still remember one year when I was alone in Bangalore and feeling bored. I sat in our apartment balcony watching all the fireworks and kids burning small crackers. The only horror was some people throwing crackers on the roads when I was driving my two wheeler :(. But apart from that, I loved everything, I even loved the smell of crackers.

In 2005, just before we came to US, I pestered my brother and hubby for crackers. Even though both of them were not interested, they went to the shop and came back with a big box of crackers which was more than what I had expected. Since we were burning crackers almost after 7-8 years, we enjoyed every bit of it.

This year, first of all we had to cancel our India trip which was supposed to be in December, due to various reasons. We were already in not-so-happy mood because of that and then all the missing lights and crackers really got to my nerve. It wont be completely wrong if I said I cooked those Diwali dishes just so that I could post them here. I had to get out of this mood somehow, so I thought of cooking a sweet dish today to cheer both of us.

Dudh paank or dudh pak– pudding is prepared in many Konkani homes during Diwali. Long grained aromatic basmati rice is cooked in milk and then cardamom and/or saffron are added for extra aroma. This comes out to be a lip smacking tasty dish. I think this is also called Pal Payasam.

I am sending this to Vee’s Diwali special JFI.

1/2 cup basmati rice
4 cups milk
1 cup sugar
1/4 tea spn cardamom powder
6-7 strands saffron(optional)
1 tbl spn cashews
1 tbl spn raisins(dry grapes)

Adjust milk and sugar according to taste.

Wash rice in water and cook it along with cashews in milk on a medium flame mixing occasionally. When the rice is cooked completely (rice should not get mushy), add sugar, raisins. Cook for about 4-5mins and then add saffron. Cook for about 1min and then take off the heat. Add cardamom powder. Serve hot or cold.

Serves : 4-5

Preparation time : 30mins

12 thoughts on “Rice-milk pudding (Doodh paank)”

  1. Hey Shilpa,

    Cheer up!…We all miss the Diwali back home. I know exactly wot u mean coz my dad does the same things in Mumbai…in a way, he brings the Diwali spirit and joy inside the house with all the enthusiasm abt lighting and the akashbutti …then ofcourse, preparing all the Diwali Khaan with mom is another special thing abt the festival.

    In your own way, you are spreading the
    festival cheer amongst many people who are away from home, by posting all these recipes.
    So cheer up!…and I’m sure your next India
    trip will just be round the corner. 🙂

    Supriya H

  2. Hey Shipla, Cheer Up girl!! Yes, life is not always as we want it but at the end of the day it is not that bad too. Call u’r parents and talk to them at length- soon you will forget that u were even disappointed a while ago.


  3. Shilpa….I am also not in a mood to celebrate Diwali. Here we have lot of Indian’s around in the Bay Area. Some homes are lit with Diyas and lighting, but nothing compared to Mumbai. Back home we are with family and relatives, here only friends for get together.

    Doodh pak is my all time favorite. I made this too for lunch today. Cheer up and have fun over weekend.

  4. Cheer up Shilpa!! I know JUST how u feel! I LOVE diwali too and am feeling really low … let’ sjust say’ hope we are in Indiafor next Diwali, to celebrate with family’!!

    Love the dudh-pak!
    Happy Diwali once again!!

  5. Hey Shilpa, wish you and your loved ones a very happy and joyous Deepavali. Cheer up, dear-what matters most is your happiness!

  6. Hi,

    There’s a little variation to it. My mother and I usually do it this way. Before cooking the rice in the milk, we rub it with a half or one teaspoonful of ghee. My mother says this helps in preventing the rice sticking to the bottom of the vessel.


    Durga Gholkar-Godbole.

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