Sunday, December 1, 2013

Orange milk pudding "Kheer Komla"

Hopped up on oranges

So what does one do when one can imagine different tastes and act accordingly. In simple words its called craving but it leans towards crazy when one literally dreams about something till one gets one's hands on it in the kitchen. With the weekend approaching determined was I to bake again to make something again. While the usual flavours of coffee , chocolate and caramel did nothing for me, the though of oranges cheered me up to no end. From then on it was all about oranges.

I was tasting spongy cakes with the tanginess of oranges, milk puddings with oranges and so when my dearest of friends confirmed that she would pay me a visit I was literally hopped up on oranges. of course oranges in India has a different meaning altogether at least in Calcutta. During my childhood days  Nagpur oranges were literally looked down upon and there was only one variety which was acceptable ,the ones from the Queen of hill stations or so they say, Darjeeling, sweet sweet like sugar they say,  it would be available only for about 1 or 2 months and like all good things disappear just when you thought they were the best treats of the world. Anyways things have changed in all these years and today while we still eagerly wait for those delectable treats the vast majority of supplies is from Nagpur.

So there was I was dreaming of sweet decadent milk pudding with little bits of oranges whose segments have all been removed. I was simultaneously dreaming of spongy soft cakes and so in my dearest friend A's honour I made not one but two desserts. This post is for the Orange milk pudding or "Kheer Komla" as is popularly known in this lush green state nestled in the Eastern part of India.

Interestingly this milk pudding though has its origin deep seated in the Eastern part of a tropical country has the pure "sahebi" foreign taste , well lets just say it is as European as custard because this only requires one to make a thick reduce milk stirrign it constantly without a break for the last 30 minutes which reminded me of Pip in the opening chapter when he was required to stir the pudding before Christmas . Well with my uncanny resemblance to Pip's activity I stirred away and was rewarded with smooth, oh so smooth creamy milk pudding. Now most people chill the pudding and add orange segments and chill it again but that leads to a slightly watery desert due to the water form the fruit. So the trick is to chill the fruit and pudding separately and then just before serving making a layer of orange segments fully deseeded skinned and all and milk pudding or well you can perhaps even call it milk fudge. There are variants of this recipe whcih adds cardamom or bay leaf but as a puritan I do not add anything else because it comes in between the sweet love makign of orange, milk pudding and your mouth.


1 litre of whole milk plus 200ml as extra in case the pudding becomes too thick (You cannot use any skimmed milk for this)
4 oranges
I handful of sugar
1 tablespoonful of clarified butter or unsalted butter

Start by bringing the milk and clarified butter (this helps in getting a very smooth pudding and prevents the milk form sticking to the sides to some extent) to a boil and then simmering it . This is a long drawn process but requires your attention nonetheless. In the beginning keep stirring from time to time, say every 7 to 10 minutes to prevent the formation of the layer of cream . It takes at least 1 hour to 1.5 hours.

In the meantime de-seed, skin and make sure you get all that white protective layer of the oranges to leave you with the pure orange segments alone.

Your real work starts in the last 20 to 30 minutes when you have to keep stirring constantly without a break, alright say 30 second breaks every 5 minutes for the smoothest of the smooth "kheers" milk pudding / milk fudge. The consistency should be like a flowing batter. So I will share what happened with me. I did do ti perfectly, started at 8:30 and by 10 it was quite thick and finished off at 10:09 a.m. but when I chilled it it became too thick and so I simply brought the 200ml of milk to a boil with 2 tsp sugar or a bit more and then whisked that in with the pudding to make sure the consistency is right. Remember that the pudding will thicken on its own when it is being chilled in the refrigerator.  Now many people set their pudding for 2 to 3 hours and then add the oranges and set it for sometime. There is a little problem with that method since the watery oranges makes the dish watery. The real trick is to chill the orange segments as well and then right before serving take the bowl and layer alternatively with pudding and orange segments and there you have , delicious orangy milk pudding.


  1. In your recipe you have no mention of the sugar when is that put in

    1. Hey Moti,

      Thanks for bringing this to my notice. Will make the due changes. Just add the sugar halfway through reducing the milk