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Phirni dessert from Purani Dilli in Delhi, India.

What: This North Indian dessert is made of rice flour or ground rice, milk, and sugar; it has the delicious, subtly sweet taste of rice pudding, but a creamy, smooth texture. It’s usually topped with pistachio nuts and served chilled in earthenware bowls. Like the similar kheer, phirni is especially popular during Ramadan and in Muslim restaurants.

Where: It’s not always on the menu, but our phirni is from Purani Dilli (2698-3371; 371 Main Rd., Zakir Nagar, Okhla, Jamia Nagar, map), a terrific Mughlai restaurant inside mazelike Zakir Nagar, a Muslim enclave not far from New Friends Colony in South Delhi.

When: Daily, 3pm-11pm

Order: Close out your Mughlai feast—chicken changezi and ishtu, mutton haleem and nihari—with a small cooling bowl of phirni (25 rupees), topped with pistachio and slivered almonds.

Alternatively: End a curry-filled meal at Old Delhi’s Al-Jawahar (2327-5987; Bazaar Matia Mahal, opposite Gate 1, Jama Masjid, map) with phirni; in South Delhi, do the same at Lazeez Darbar (2437-3333; C-1/2, Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Marg, B Block, Jangpura B, Jungpura, map).


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