This Almond and Rice Dessert harnesses the rejuvenative power of almonds, milk and pomegranate. Divali, the Festival of Lights, is a season of sweets, running from the New Moon to Kartik Purnima, the November Full Moon. This Divali season, enjoy a rejuvenative Ayurvedic treat! Almond and rice dessert is good for strength and energy, for the male reproductive system and for ojas, core immunity. It is also an aphrodisiac treat for a romantic evening. Cow's milk is best for ojas and shukra (sperm production), while goat milk can be substituted for an allergy-free version. And for a vegan recipe, use all coconut milk and no dairy milk. It will be delicious!
For almond milk:
- 1/2 cup blanched almonds
- 3/4 cup boiling water
- 5 Tbsp. rice flour (grind basmati rice in spice grinder to make this)
- 1.5 cups cow or goat milk
- 2 cups coconut milk
- 1/2 cup turbinado sugar
- 2 tsp. rosewater
- 1 Tbsp. chopped pistachio
- 2 Tbsp. chopped almonds
- 2 pomegranates
- For almond milk, place blanched almonds in a small bowl, and pour the boiling water over them.
- Cover, and soak for at least 15 minutes.
- Blend the soaked almonds into a fine puree.
- Strain the almond milk through a double layer of fine muslin cloth into a small bowl, squeezing the cloth to extract as much almond milk as possible.
- Combine the milk, coconut milk, and sugar in a heavy bottomed saucepan, and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.
- As the milk comes to a boil, reduce the heat.
- Add rice flour as almond milk comes to a boil, and reduce the heat.
- Stir the rice flour and almond mixture, because rice flour has a tendency to separate from the liquid and settle at the bottom.
- Add it to the milk and coconut milk in the saucepan in a steady, slow stream, stirring rapidly with a wire whisk to prevent lumping.
- Cook over low heat until the mixture thickens and a thin custard is formed on the spoon.
- Continue cooking the custard, uncovered, for an additional 5 minutes.
- The custard should be quite thin.
- As it chills, it will thicken considerably.
- Stir in the rose water, cover and cool.
- A skin may form on the custard. If so, stir it in with a wire whisk.
- To serve, pour into individual dessert dishes, sprinkle with chopped almonds and pistachios, and place a teaspoon of pomegranate seeds in the center.
- Serve your delicious almond and rice dessert with love and pride!