Komola Kheer or Orange payasam is a delicious and rich kheer or payasam made with sweetened and thickened milk, fresh oranges with lots of crushed nuts that makes for one of the easiest desserts you could serve.
During my childhood I remember the Durga pujas being celebrated in a very grand manner by the Bengalis as they lived at large in our colony. They used to rent the community hall and they will invite all the people to get the blessings. A big statue of Durga Ma will be kept and the celebration will go on for 9 days.
After the elaborate puja ceremony, a variety of sweets will be served as prasad to all the people present there. This is one such kheer that I loved because of its aroma and its tanginess. I pushed my mom to learn it from them and from then on it was a regular in our home during the orange season.
Summer time is one of the best season to enjoy this refreshingly delicious dessert. Whether it is a party or for distributing dessert during Navaratri season to welcome the visitors, this make ahead, elegant kheer is the best.
About this orange kheer
This is a very traditional kheer made in Laha Bari house at Bidhan Sarani , Bengal which dates back to atleast 200 years.
It is made by boiling whole milk till it reduces to half, thickening in the process, which is sweetened by adding sugar, infused with saffron strands and orange segments. It is made even more rich by adding crushed nuts.
Why make Komola Kheer
Beginner friendly and no skill required
Easy make ahead dessert
Tastes refreshing and soothing
Best dessert to enjoy during hot summer season
Works well with substitutes
Komola (oranges) - Orange fruit is the hero in this dessert. Choosing firm, fleshy and juicy oranges is important.
Nagpur, Malta oranges works best in this recipe. Take time to remove the white thin membrane completely that is covering the orange segments.
Milk - Using whole milk gives a rich, creamy and thick kheer that makes the dessert all the more enjoyable.
Sugar - Sweetens the dessert. Check below for the variations.
Nuts - Chopped nuts takes the dessert to a whole new level making every mouthful, an enjoyable gastronomic experience.
You can reduce the quantity of sugar by half and use condensed milk instead to thicken the kheer quickly thereby reducing the cooking time.
You can also sweeten the kheer with either honey or stevia. But add it only after cooking and not while the milk is boiling.
You can also use cane sugar but it will change the color of the kheer.
Instead of using regular milk like I've done in this recipe, you can use almond mylk or cashew mylk.
I have made this kheer with almond milk. It turned out pretty great and I couldn't tell the difference at all.
Choose juicy and sweet oranges. Malta and Nagpur oranges works best.
You can also use regular toned milk and later add condensed milk instead of sugar to thicken the kheer
If using organic sugar, use only ½ a cup.
You can peel the oranges beforehand and keep it refrigerated until you need to add it to the milk, as a precautionary step if you are worried of milk splitting.
How to serve
Always serve the komola kheer chilled in individual glasses or bowls with crushed nuts sprinkled on top. This kheer tastes best when served chilled.
The kheer has to be refrigerated else it will spoil. You can make this komola kheer ahead and keep it in the refrigerator to serve the next day.
But anything beyond a day or two, the kheer will become way too tangy because of the oranges and it will lose its original taste and flavor.
Do not reheat this kheer after adding the oranges. If you do, the milk will get split and the whole kheer will spoil.
see more sweet recipes
Komola Kheer - Orange Payasam
- Whole milk – 1-½ ltr
- Sugar – 1 cup
- Oranges - 2
- Saffron – 1 generous pinch
- Cardamom powder – 1 tsp
- Pistachios - 2 tbsp chopped
- Almonds - 2 tbsp chopped
- Crushed dried rose petals - to garnish
- Peel the oranges and remove the seeds and the transparent white skin or membrane from each segment. Dissolve saffron in 2 tbsp of milk.
- Take a heavy bottomed pan and add the milk. Bring it to a boil. Take 2 tbsp of hot milk into a small bowl. Add the saffron strands and keep it aside to dissolve.
- Keep stirring over a medium flame to prevent boiling over, till it starts to thicken. Add the sugar and cardamom powder.
- Allow the milk to boil till the color of milk starts to change and the milk reduces to 1 ltr. The entire process should take around 20 to 30 minutes.
- Remove the milk from heat and let it cool completely to room temperature. Add the orange segments, saffron milk, crushed almonds and pistachios (reserve some to garnish) and mix gently. Refrigerate for 1 to 2 hour or till serving. This will further thicken the kheer.
- Scoop komola kheer into individual bowls or glasses. Garnish with reserved almonds, pistachios and crushed rose petals on top.