Shirberenj; Delicious Traditional Persian Pudding

The Shiberenj Pudding is a nutritious food commonly served during the evening fast-breaking meals in the holy Islamic month of Ramadan.

Shirberenj (literally translated as milk-rice) is of one the oldest Iranian puddings which is simple, and at the same time nourishing.

Shirberenj, also called the “milk broth”, has a long history in Persian cuisine. was referred to by renowned 9th century Iranian poet Ferdowsi as “Shirba” (literally meaning milk soup).

This tasty pudding is made with milk and rice and is easy to cook. It is mostly served during Iftar (fast-breaking meal at sunset) during the holy month of Ramadan.

An expert in traditional medicine says Shirberenj is a useful food and had better be used with cinnamon for better digestion.

As Shirberenj is made with milk and rice, it is usually used as complementary food for children under two years of age as well as a side dish for adults, says a nutritionist.

Milk, with which Shirberenj is made, contains high-quality protein good for the growth of body tissues, the nutrition expert adds. He says the pudding is recommended for those who fast, especially youngsters. Milk also contains vitamin B2, which expedites metabolism. The pudding is usually served after the main course with sugar, jam, grape syrup or anything which is sweet.

Ingredients:

Milk: 3 cups or 100gr

Rice: 1 cup or 200gr

Rosewater: Half a cup

Recipe:

Rinse the rice in water with no salt added and leave it for a few hours. Then remove the water and put the rice in a casserole with two cupfuls of water, or one cupful of water and one cupful of milk. Put the mixture on the oven to be cooked and become a little soft. Then add the remaining milk while the pudding remains on low-temperature heat. Keep stirring the pudding until fully cooked.

After you add the milk, increase the temperature until milk begins to boil. Then decrease the temperature. Bear in mind that the casserole’s lid should NOT be on while cooking Shirberenj to keep the pudding from boiling over. Usually 15 to 20 minutes will be enough.

Now add the rosewater. After one or two minutes, remove the casserole from the oven, put the pudding in the serving dish and garnish it with cinnamon. Now it is ready to be served.

N.B.: Sugar could be added to Shirberenj along with milk and rosewater while the dish is being cooked. In certain areas, Shirberenj is served with grape syrup, jam or honey.

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