Honestly this is the best rice pudding I've ever had. The best. And extremely flavorful, dense and creamy. I just love it! I'm never going to prepare rice pudding in another way other than this.
Now, let's find out some cultural things. This "rice pudding" right here is called "Kheer" and it is eaten throughout South Asia.
The word "kheer" is derived from the Sanskrit word for milk "ksheer", which is also the old name for sweet rice pudding.
Depending upon the region, it can be flavored with cardamom, rose water and even nuts can be added to it. I have flavored mine with cardamom and I have added cream, which totally changes the taste.
What is interesting about kheer is the fact that it was a part of the ancient Indian diet and it is even mentioned in Ayurveda due to its cooling effects. So, if you eat something spicy, kheer would be the perfect dessert.
Start by pouring the milk into a pot and bring it to a boil, together with the cardamom pods. Add the rice to the boiling milk and crumble it with your fingers (optional).
Boil the rice for 10 minutes, then add the sugar to it. Stir everything and boil for 5-10 more minutes.
The final step is adding the cream - at this stage you can also mash the rice grains for a thicker consistency.
Add the cream, mix it well and turn off the heat. Let it cool and chill in the fridge for best results.
After 5 hours the kheer will have a creamy consistency and it will be perfect.