Neighborhood Kitchens

Dosa Temple's Semiya Payasam

Semiya Payasam is a dessert made for festive occasions in South India. It is a pudding made with milk, vermicelli noodles, sugar, ghee, raisins, cashews, and cardamom powder.


3 tsp. ghee (clarified butter) or regular butter
1 cup vermicelli noodles
2 tsp. cashews
2 tsp. raisins
5 cups milk
1-1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. cardamom powder


Add 1-1/2 teaspoons of ghee to a skillet. Add vermicelli noodles and, while stirring continuously, cook until golden brown. Pour noodles into a bowl and set aside.

Add the rest of the ghee to another skillet. Add cashews and raisins and cook until slightly brown. Remove from skillet and set aside.

Add milk to a deep saucepan. Stir in cooked vermicelli noodles, sugar, and a pinch of cardamom powder.

Add in raisin/cashew mixture.

Ladle into a bowl and serve warm.

Serves: 4 to 6

Siva Kumar

Siva Kumar is the Chef at Dosa Temple, a South Indian restaurant in Somerville's Union Square. He shared this recipe with us when he was featured as our guest on Neighborhood Kitchens.


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Building on a 35-year history of producing Latino and multicultural programming, WGBH’s award winning La Plaza team has a new offering — Neighborhood Kitchens, a series about the exploration of culture through food. Every week the show offers a unique window into immigrant communities in New England.

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In each episode, host Margarita Martínez visits a different ethnic restaurant and learns three delicious recipes from the chef. She also explores the restaurant’s neighborhood, discovering hidden gems along the way. Join her as she learns about new ingredients, new cultures, and new neighborhoods. ¡Hasta pronto!

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Margarita's Neighborhood Visits

»Boston: Bristol Lounge
»Boston's South End: Orinoco, Teranga and Oishii
»Boston's Back Bay: Casa Romero
»Boston's North End: Taranta
»Roxbury: Merengue
»Boston's Beacon Hill: Scampo
»All Around Boston: Mei Mei Street Kitchens
»Cambridge: Muqueca, Oleana, and Sandrine's
Somerville: Dosa Temple
»Lawrence: Cafe Azteca
»Lowell: Simply Khmer

»Fresh from the Fish Market
»Jamaica Plain: Tres Gatos
»Dorchester: Pho Le and Cafe Polonia
»Medford: Bistro 5
»Portland, ME: Emilitsa
»Newport, RI: Tallulah on Thames
»Pawtucket, RI: Rasoi


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