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Friday, July 31, 2015

Quinoa Sago Kheer(Payasam) | Healthy Protein Desserts

Quinoa (pronounced 'kinwa') is one of the healthiest foods,very rich in protein and is vegan.I have become a strong fan of this tiny seed with tail and have started incorporating this as much as possible to our tastes.My kids are not very fond of their share of milk everyday and neither are they fans of milk based shakes,lassi is an exception though.So,I always try to tweak in milk in one or the other forms that they love to have.This is one such recipe that I found it convenient as a filling after school meal altering the sweetness slightly if they don't like it very sweet like payasam.Sago(tapioca pearls) and condensed milk gives the desired thickness and consistency to the payasam.The tapioca pearls are very good to chew, and are bubbly,gelatin like balls once cooked.The draining of water from quinoa reduces the nutty flavor along with the addition of cardamom flavor and tastes yumm.My family loves this payasam very much but thinking about calories from condensed milk for grown ups,you can't frequently relish this payasam.Once in a while,you will definitely enjoy this healthy dessert,try it out and awaiting to hear the feedback from you,guys !!

Preparation time ~10 minutes
Cooking time ~20  minutes
Recipe source~ own
quinoa,uncooked 1/3 cup
sago/sabudana/chaviri 1/4 cup
water 3 cups
whole milk 3 cups
condensed milk 1/2 tin
cardamom powder 1/2 tsp
cashews 2 tsp
raisins 2 tsp
ghee 2tsp

  • Heat ghee in a thick bottomed pan or cooker.Fry the cashews followed by raisins,drain on a plate.
  • Boil the milk(3 cups) in another pan and leave covered.
  • In the remaining ghee,add the sago and quinoa.Roast on low flame for 3-4 minutes and then add water(3 cups).Cover and cook for 10 minutes on medium flame until quinoa gets cooked and sago is 3/4 th cooked(when you try to bite through the tapioca pearl(sago),it may be chewy on the outside and slightly hard inside.Switch off flame and drain the water by pouring it through a strainer.
  • Now,add the cooked sago and quinoa in the same pan and add the boiled milk.Let the mixture come to a soft boil and then add the condensed milk(though I have mentioned 1/2 tin,I used only 1/4 tin as my family loves a mildly sweet payasam).Cook for another 3-4 minutes and then add cardamom powder.Finally,add in the fried raisins and cashews.
  • Serve warm or chilled(if you are fond of chilled payasam,then reserve half a cup of milk from the payasam to add when you serve the payasam else it becomes thick when chilled).

* You can use 2 cups of water to cook the sago and quinoa so that the water gets partially absorbed and the starch and quinoa flavor is retained (but I personally don't like that and so drained out the starch and quinoa flavor).Retaining starch from sago gives a much more thicker payasam but I found cooking it 3/4 thand then adding to the milk,cooks it full and adds a mild thickness to the payasam.
* You can even cook sago and quinoa separately.

* Use more ghee for flavor if you love that way.
* If you have no access to quinoa,then use only sago to make sago kheer if you love that way.In that case use 1/2 cup of sago.
* If you have saffron,then use for a mild flavoring and color.
* You can even garnish with sliced almonds and pistachio for a richer payasam.I made it very simple though.

More quinoa recipes that you can give a try-
Quinoa Idlis
Quinoa Veg Pulao
Quinoa Yogurt Parfait