Sago Payasam – The Broad Place

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Sago Payasam

This is the most delicious dish that my friend Mish taught me to cook. Payasam is originally from Southern India and is a dish usually made on special occasions as offerings to the gods. Although it’s a Sattvic dish, it is very decadent, and should be only indulged in occasionally! I make it on our Rounding Retreats and it goes down a treat.

The recipe is from Maya Tiwari’s book A Life Of Balance – one I would highly recommend reading.


serves 6

12 strands saffron

1 tablespoon of ghee

1 cup sago (little tapioca balls)

3 cups water

2 cups certified organic milk

1/4 cup rapider or coconut or unrefined brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon cardamom

Soak the saffron for 10 minutes in 3 teaspoons of water. In a large frying pan/skillet, melt the ghee and salute the sago until light brown. From experience, this takes some time, maybe 15 or so minutes, be patient and keep stirring. In a separate pan boil the water and and add to sago. Simmer over medium heat for 15 or so minutes until the sago is mostly transparent.

In a small saucepan bring  the milk, sugar, saffron and its soaking water, and cardamom to a boil then add to the sago. Stir through and then let sit for 10 minutes. Stir again and let sit. We enjoy eating it warm, although you can serve it at room temperature or chilled.

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