Makes 4 servings (small cups)
Time taken - Around 10 minutes
500 ml cow's milk ( I used 3%)
8 dates, deseeded and sliced
1/2 cup water
1 tsp cornflour mixed in 1/4th cup cold milk
4 tsp sugar
Pinch of saffron
Garnish - 4 cashews broken into bits, few raisins - sauteed in 1 tsp hot ghee for a minute on low flame till cashews are golden and raisins are puffed
- Keep the milk to boil in a heavy bottomed pan, and then let it simmer for 5 minutes or so.
- Meanwhile place the dates and cashews in a glass bowl with 1/2 cup water and microwave on high for 4-5 minutes till the dates are tender. Once cooled, grind this to a fine (or coarse, if you like) paste.
- Add the cornstarch slurry to the milk and bring it to a boil. Then add the date-cashew paste, sugar and saffron. Let the mix simmer for 3-5 minutes and the payasam is ready.
- I don't usually add cornstarch to desserts, but I wasn't sure if the date paste would curdle the milk, while bringing it to a boil, hence the precaution.
- Garnish with the cashews and raisins toasted in ghee.
- This tastes good both warm and cold.