Today is Onam, the one festival that Malayalees all over the world celebrate to welcome the virtuous King Mahabali who was an exemplary ruler.
Onasadya is the highlight of the celebrations and a yummy dessert is a must at the end to complete the sadya in an appropriate way.
Here is the recipe for Palada Payasam, the favourite of all the Malayalees and the King of the deserts when it comes to wedding sadyas and traditional ceremonies.
I made this palada payasam exclusively for the staffs in my hubby’s office who couldn’t make it home for this Onam.
I am sure many of you must have invited your friends for the sadya and may be you will be even having an Onam potluck. With so many people to celebrate and share happiness, why not make the best of the desserts to treat them all.
The recipe I am sharing here serves for around 12-15 people and is perfect if you have a potluck or friends to join for the Onam sadya.
Palada pradhaman recipe (step by step instructions):
So here is the recipe.
I used store bought ada(rice flakes or ada flakes) to make the payasam.
Boil water in a big vessel and add ada(rice flakes) to this boiling water and switch off the flame. Let it sit there for around 20-30 minutes.
Now rinse the ada under cold water, drain it well and keep it aside. This is to ensure that the rice flakes don’t stick to each other.
Take a thick-bottomed vessel (I have used my pressure cooker) and heat it. Add ghee and water to this and wait for the water to boil.
Once the water is boiled, add milk. After you add milk comes the difficult part, stirring. Stir the milk continuously using a ladle keeping the flame to medium low.
Add 1 cup sugar to this. Keep on stirring. Again stir..stir….stir…….stir. Keep stirring till the milk comes to boil.
Now you can put the ladle you used for stirring inside the vessel itself and stir once in 3 minutes or so.
The spoon kept in the vessel ensures that the milk doesn’t boil and overflow. When touching the ladle be careful as the ladle will be hot.
Keep stirring till the milk reduces to ¾ of its previous amount. This can take around 45 minutes.
Now add the rinsed and drained palada or rice flakes into this. Stir in between till the ada-flakes becomes soft or they start to appear on the surface of the boiling milk. This takes around 20 minutes.
Now add the remaining sugar. Add sugar a little by little so that you can control the sweetness of the desert to satisfy your palate.
Once sugar is added stir the payasam till it reaches a slightly thick consistency. Switch off the stove. Note that the payasam consistency thickens further when it cools down. So make sure you switch off the stove keeping this also in mind.
The color of the palada payasam should be ideally a pale pink color. This can be achieved if we do it in the traditional way by taking 1:1 ratio of water and milk and reducing it to half the quantity by boiling. This can take around 3- 4 hours and a lot of cooking gas.
How to get a pale pink color for palada pradhaman or palada payasam?
I have reduced the amount of water taken to save time and cut down the cooking gas usage and so my payasam is a very pale cream color. Don’t worry; we do have tricks to get that desired pink color.
Take a non-stick pan and add sugar to this. Let the sugar caramelize and turn to an amber color. Make sure you keep on stirring to ensure uniform cooking and to avoid the sugar from burning. Now add boiled water to this. Stir well till the entire caramelized sugar is dissolved in water.
Keep it aside and let it cool down. Once cooled, add this caramelized sugar solution to the palada payasam. You may not believe your eyes, but your white palada payasam has now turned into its pale pink color right in front of you.
I must say this method adds to the flavor actually and you get the payasam with the correct color and flavor.
In the traditional palada payasam, we don’t add roasted cashews and raisins. But if you want you can add it at the end.
The yummy palada payasam is all ready to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Yep it is a bit time consuming dessert to cook, but if you make it I am you will get amble amount of appreciation for your cooking skill.
Do try this out and let me know how it turned out for you.
Forgot to mention one thing. Tomorrow I have a potluck onam sadya with friends. Payasam has always been a hit whenever I have made one. So this time I am trying pineapple pachadi for a change. Do check the easy pineapple pachadi recipe by Roshni.
- Always keep in mind that the payasam thickens in consistency when it cools down. So switch off the stove at the right time keeping this in mind
- If it thickens, you can add boiled milk just before serving to make it into desired consistency
- If you are not so adamant about the pale pink color you can skip the adding of caramelized sugar. Sometimes if you are lucky you can get a pink color even without adding the caramelized sugar
- You can add roasted cashew and raisins if you want
- Adjust the amount of sugar according to your taste
Hope you liked the step by step palada pradhaman recipe.
Do you make palada payasam at home for occasions like Onam? Do you make it in pressure cooker or traditional method of stirring? Do share with me in comments.