Cardamom rabadi with champagne mango & salted pistachios

rabadi

I find it fascinating that different cultures have similar recipes, especially when they involve not-so-simple techniques. The other day, Isaac and I made paneer, which, it turns out, is a lot like making ricotta. Did they teach each other? Did somebody in each country accidentally drop lemon juice in their boiling milk and say, “hey….”? I’ve been reading my Indian cookbooks (those by Julie Sahni and Madhur Jaffrey), and I was excited to come across recipes for rabadi. This is milk, boiled and then simmered for quite some time, until it becomes a lovely, slightly sweet pudding-like consistency. It’s thick and creamy and tawny. It’s very delicious! And the method of making it is quite similar to dulce de leche, except that you don’t add sugar, so it’s not as caramel-y. How did people discover these things? That if you whip egg whites they become stiff, or that if you cook milk for hours it becomes a comforting pudding? I like the simplicity of this dessert. It’s really just milk! I added a tiny bit of cardamom, and a few spoonfuls of sugar, and that was it – it was delicious by itself, but it was even nicer with some perfectly ripe champagne mangos, some pretty strawberries, and a handful of roughly chopped salted pistachios. This is a nice dessert for summer time, because you serve the rabadi chilled, and it’s perfect with whatever fruit is ripe. The next day I blended the leftover rabadi with the leftover mangoes and pistachios, to make a delicious thick frothy drink.

rabadi

And here’s the perfect song for this! Hot Milk, by Jackie Mittoo. He’s the best!
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