Pathirpeni is originally from Karnataka and I just adore it. Most of the time (naah!! may be all the time) people seem to confuse this with Paal poli (deep fried flat bread soaked in sweet condensed milk). Most of my friends have not heard about this dish.
I have a very sweet memory attached to this particular dish. I made it for the first time in UK and that day happened to be my birthday - 2007. My mom couriered new dresses and a packet of raw pathirpeni packet along with a small packet of crushed almonds, pistachios, cashewnuts, saffron and cardamons to be used for it; a small chit was also attached to its cover, which summarized the recipe. I still remember that day - cold gloomy day with drizzling now and then, my friend announced that a parcel arrived, I rushed down in excitement to see what amma had sent me. I opened to see my birthday gifts and little note tucked inside a greeting card slid down my hand. I saw my amma's hand writing after such a long time, I vaguely remember the last time I saw it. I still have them, have saved it in my dairy.
1 Packet Pathirpeni (you can get it in any supermarkets – Spencer’s daily, Nilgiris but I doubt its availability abroad) - Picture above.
1/2 cup nuts (Almonds, Pistachios and Cashews) - chopped (Save some for garnish)
1 teaspoon Cardamon powder
1000ml whole milk
Sugar to taste
10-12 strands Saffron+ 1/4 cup warm milk
Warm 1/4 cup milk and place the saffron strands. Set aside.
Bring the milk to boil and once they boil, lower the flame and cook for 30 minutes until they reduce to half. Allow the milk to thicken a bit. Now add the crushed cardamoms or cardamon powder and nuts. Now slowly add the sugar and mix thoroughly. Simmer it for next 5 minutes. Keep a cup of remaining milk aside.
Now take a serving bowl,preferably small one. Place the Patherpeni and pour the thick milk on top. Let the peni soak in the liquid well. Garnish with the nuts and serve immediately.
Note:Don’t cook the milk till they go really thick, not too thick or not too thin.