Badam Kheer is a delicious dessert prepared using milk and almonds. The almonds add a beautiful nutty flavour to the kheer, as well as a gorgeous, rich and creamy texture. Badam Kheer (‘Badam Payasam‘ in Tamil) is just the perfect sweet treat for the upcoming festivals like Navratri and Diwali.
In today’s post, I am going to take you all through the process of preparing Badam Kheer, the way it is made in my family.
What goes into Badam Kheer
Milk and almonds are the two primary ingredients of this kheer. Full-cream milk yields the best results, so do try to use it as opposed to skimmed versions. It is also important to use good-quality almonds like Mamra.
Milk is sweetened with sugar and thickened, then thickened further using peeled and ground almonds. A bit of saffron and cardamom powder is added in, for flavour. I love having this Badam Kheer slightly chilled, garnished with more toasted almond slivers.
Since this is a rich kheer loaded with almonds, it is advisable to consume it only occasionally on festivals or other special days.
How to make Badam Kheer
This is quite a simple thing to prepare, requiring just a few ingredients. The almonds need to be soaked for a few hours and, once that is done, the kheer comes together very easily.
Here is how to go about making Badam Kheer or Badam Payasam.
Ingredients (makes 5-6 servings):
1. 1 litre full-fat milk
2. 1/2 cup almonds + 7-8 more for garnishing
3. 2 pinches of saffron strands
4. 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar or as needed
5. 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder or as per taste
1. Take the almonds in a bowl. Bring 3/4 cup of water to a boil, in a saucepan. Pour this boiling water over the almonds in the bowl. Cover the bowl. Let the almonds soak, covered, for 2-3 hours.
2. When the almonds are done soaking, drain out all the water from them. Press the soaked almonds slightly, and the peel will come off easily. Peel all the almonds in this manner.
3. Reserve 1/4 cup of milk and take the rest in a heavy-bottomed pan. Place the pan on high flame.
4. Take the almonds in a small mixer jar and add in the reserved 1/4 cup of milk. Grind together to a smooth paste. Keep aside.
5. When the milk in the pan starts bubbling, add in the saffron strands. Mix well.
6. Let the milk come to a boil, then add in the sugar. Mix well and reduce the flame down to medium.
7. Cook for 4-5 minutes on medium flame or till the milk reduces a little. Scrape down the cream that forms on the sides of the pan, back into the milk. You don’t have to reduce the milk to half its original volume – just a little reduction is okay. Stir intermittently to prevent sticking to the bottom of the pan.
8. At this stage, add in the ground almond paste to the pan. Mix well. Continue to cook on medium flame for 4-5 minutes more or till the mixture thickens further. Scrape down the cream from the sides of the pan, back into the milk. Keep stirring intermittently. Switch off gas when the mixture has thickened but it is still on the runnier side – remember that it will thicken up further in time.
9. In the meantime, chop up the almonds for garnishing into slivers. Lightly toast them in a pan, on medium flame, for about 2 minutes or till they get crisp. Take care to ensure that the almonds do not burn. Mix these toasted almond slivers into the milk mixture.
10. Mix in the cardamom powder too. Your Badam Kheer is ready. Serve hot, warm, at room temperature or chilled.
Other kheer recipes on my blog
There are quite a few other kheer recipes on my blog, which you might want to check out – Carrot Kheer| Semiya Payasam| Nei Payasam| Sangu Pushpam Aval Payasam| Pasi Paruppu Payasam| Elaneer Payasam| Palada Pradhaman| Oat Milk Payasam
Tips & Tricks
1. For best results, use full-fat milk. I have used full-cream milk from Nandini here.
2. Do not overcook the kheer after adding in the almond paste. The milk might curdle. Cooking for 4-5 minutes on medium flame is good.
3. Use a heavy-bottomed pan for cooking the kheer.
4. Do not grind the almonds without taking the skin off. The paste does not turn out smooth in this case, and it ultimately adversely affects the texture of the kheer.
5. The almonds can be soaked for longer too, even overnight. In that case, you don’t need to add boiling water. The almonds can be soaked in regular room-temperature water.
6. Remember to stop cooking the Badam Kheer when it is still on the runnier side. It will thicken up some more with time.
7. Adjust the quantity of sugar you use, depending upon personal taste preferences.
8. You may reserve the water in which the almonds were soaked. It can be used in soups, gravies, etc.
9. The peeled almond skins can be reserved too. They can be used in chutneys or while grinding tomato puree for gravy-based sabzis.
10. I have used home-made cardamom powder here. You can use a store-bought one instead, too. To make home-made cardamom powder, take a handful of green cardamom pods in a small mixer and grind to a fine powder, skin and all. Keep this at room temperature in a clean, dry, air-tight bottle and use as needed.
Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!