Flip Cookbook

Girl geek foodies making healthy cooking fun and easy.


Sugar Free Sandesh

The older I get, the more I realize what sacrifices my mom made while I was growing up. If I had to describe what she did in a sentence she pretty much walked in snow, up hill, both ways while dragging the entire kid crew along on a sled. Heh.

I’m seriously not kidding. I’m amazed at how she managed to work full time at least 6 days a week (often 7) taking public transportation to get there. Raised 3 kids. Made sure we were enrolled in the best school possible. Made sure we were enrolled in plenty of extra circular activities. Cooked home made food practically every night. And always with a smile on her face. And always with the attitude that she could always squeeze in time to help someone else. I honestly don’t appreciate her enough but I do think of this once in a while and I’m just shocked and in awe. She was my age when she was already doing all this, but when I grow up, I hope I measure up somewhat.

My mom is quite a fabulous cook who loves to feed. I’m not being gushy or overly sentimental. I lived at home when I Read More


Phirni (Indian Rice Pudding)

Phirni is a simple rice pudding which is traditionally made by boiling the milk slowly and cooking it down so that it becomes nice, thick and dense. I grew up on Kheer (the same pudding made with whole rice instead) and it was a staple in my house. We’d know some sort of celebration was in order if Kheer was cooking. Since it was always in abundance, as a teenager, I’d run the other direction from it. Flash forward to today πŸ™‚ I beg of my mom to make it for me and I finish the 4 servings all by myself! For that one hour, all self control is out of the door. I tell myself, yes there is sugar in this recipe, but see, not as sweet as back in India now is it? *innocent look*

This recipe can be made without the condensed milk and with sugar/honey instead. My next goal (on a long list of goals!) is to try this recipe with honey so Raj will be happy with me. Even now, though she is a good 200 miles away, I can see her expression when I tell her it has sugar in it!! πŸ™‚ but then again, what are friends for? she keeps me in check! πŸ™‚ Since we always have milk, sugar, rice and cardamom in my house, a gorgeous dessert is never more than 45 minutes away! Yipiiieee! πŸ™‚

NOTE: As it cools down, it tends to thicken so that is expected.

Phirni (Indian rice pudding)

Makes: 4 servings
Ready in: 45 minutes


  • 1/4 cup rice (I used basmati)
  • 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • water to soak + few tsp to grind the rice
  • 1 liter milk (I used 2%)
  • 3 cardamom pods, ground
  • a couple of pinches of saffron
  • raisins, pistachios to serve (optional)
  • sugar if needed (I needed 1 tsp)


1. Soak the rice in about a cup of water for 15 mins.

2. Drain the water and use one of your smaller grinder attachments so that you can make a fine, consistent paste when you grind the rice.

3. I added about a couple of teaspoons of water, just enough water so that the blades run smoothly. You want to stop once in between, mix up the rice and water mixture so that you don’t have some whole rice grains left in it.

4. Run the grinder again so that a nice consistent paste is achieved. This is still mildly grainy, you are not making flour out of it! *big grin*.

5. Now heat the milk on high and get it to a boil. My mom got me this grill from India, to make Phulka’s (puffed roti’s), and we use it to heat milk on it because heating it directly on the coil always burns it.

6. Once the milk is boiling steadily, reduce to a simmer and add the rice paste. Along with it add the saffron, cardamom and continue cooking until the rice is done. Keep stirring so that the milk does not burn.

7. Now add the condensed milk and stir well so that is combines with the mixture. Cook for a couple of minutes and continue stirring.

8. Taste it to see if you need more sugar. I needed a tsp of sugar but it really depends on how sweet you want it to be. Serve warm with the pistachios or raisins on top!