I came across our today’s guest Farzana Rijas of ‘Reclaiming Heart‘ through a facebook group, which is solely dedicated to Muslim Bloggers round the globe. Farzana is a Homoeopathic physician by profession and a passionate writer. Her blog ‘Reclaiming Heart’ is all about her random reflections on life, Islam, health along with some recipes to treasure and book reviews and anything that inspires to live a productive life. Settled in Riyadh, Farzana is reclaiming, redefining and reinventing the journey of her life. In today’s post Faraza is sharing with us a delicious and energetic Malabar drink called Paaloodha, which is perfect to include in our iftar menu. Do try this out today. Thank you Farzana for being part of this event and sending in this yummy drink. Do stop by at Farzana’s blog to know more about her and her journey.
Assalamu Alaikum Sisters
Ramadan Kareem to all those around.
When Lubna of YUMMY FOOD emailed me to be a part of this great event, I tell you I was on cloud nine. Being an event I look forward to every year, and even before I started blogging, it was like a fangirl moment for me. Alhamdulillah. I am just happy to be a part of this event within a year of my blog, Reclaimingheart.
As we all quite know Ramadan is not the time for food celebrations and more time in the kitchen. This is the month of Quran when we need to re-examine and re-establish our relationship with Quran and continue the journey of reclaiming our faith for the eleven months that follow.
But along with learning Quran, we need to practice what we learn from it. Hence bettering our relations and our character and our role as a social being is also a part of a Ramadan well spent. And that is why I guess we have so much food traditions for each of our part of the world during Ramadan. I am grateful to my parents to introduce this aspect of Ramadan as well to me. And so, my mother prepared dishes with a history of traditional goodness for Ramadan and my father used to talk to us after every suhoor about the deep meanings and practical Islam revealed in Quran. Oh, I already miss them. Rabbirhamhuma kamaa rabbayaanee swagheera.Ameen.
Today’s dish, Paaloodha, is the first dish that comes in my memory lane when I think about our Ramadan foods. My mother, who is the greatest cook I ever know used to prepare this dish every time during Ramadan and most times during Ramadan only. She hails from Malabar region of Kerala in India and if you are a foodie you would know what a Malabar food is in the dictionary of Indian Muslims. I always find so many similarities in Our Malabar food traditions and Arabian and Persian cuisines. In a way, Paaloodha is a Malabar muhallabiah.
Paaloodha is a light healthy wheat pudding served during iftar in Malabar region. It is mildly sweet like muhallabiah but with all goodness of wheat. You can see variations of this in many other names but this is something I grew up eating every Ramadan. And this is a recipe I treasure much as it is on every note of my Mom. Being settled away from hometown, I miss her food every Ramadan.
So, let us dive into the recipe.
Paaloodha/ Malabar Wheat Muhallabiah
- Wheat (whole/broken/Harees)- 1/4 cup
- Milk- 2 cup (500 ml)
- Sugar – Half cup
- Salt- A pinch
- Rose water- 1/2 tbsp
- Cashew Nuts and Raisins- a handful
- Soak the wheat in water in the morning/overnight.
- Grind it with good amount of water (I used up to 2 cups water for grinding)
- Sieve the White wheat juice to a heavy bottomed saucepan and blend the residue again to get the maximum out of the wheat kernels.
- Now set aside this liquid in the saucepan for at least 3 hours undisturbed.
- After the three hours, you can see the frothy water floating over and the whitish milk will be settled at the bottom of the saucepan.
- Now discard the water portion slowly without disturbing the lower white wheat residue.
- Now add the milk and sugar and salt to this white wheat residue the in pan and put on the fire.
- Start stirring immediately on a high flame taking care not to get it stick to pan for about 5 minutes. It would soon start thickening like the muhallabiah.
- Now lower the flame to medium and continue stirring for about 15 minutes.
- Now add the raisins and nuts and rosewater and put off the fire as it gets a consistency of a thick custard.
- Transfer them to serving bowls and keep covered with a paper or Clingfilm till it sets and gets cold enough. You don’t need to refrigerate them because this way it remains creamy when served.
- You may substitute milk with coconut milk for a dairy-free version.
- We don’t temper raisins and nuts in ghee for paaloodha and it is a unique thing about this dish I guess. And that makes it healthier for iftar. But you can totally do it if you prefer.
- It usually takes about 20 minutes of stirring but can totally depend on your variation of wheat and milk. See what works for you.
- The sugar mentioned is the maximum sweetness I believe this dish should taste. You may reduce it and reserve to add later according to your preference. I prefer a less sweet version.
Find more Ramadan Special recipes of this year @ Joy From Fasting To Feasting – X.