Cooking with Alison

Rice Pudding Recipe

In Other Desserts on December 3, 2010 at am

The first time I tried rice pudding, it was served cold, and I didn’t understand why anyone would enjoy bits of rice in their creamy custard.  I didn’t try it again until years later, when a friend of mine served it warm after dinner.  She completely changed my mind about rice pudding.  Then I came up with this recipe and turned Ed and Krystal into rice pudding fans too.  🙂

Rice pudding is a simple dessert that you can serve all year round.  For example, you can serve it cold in the summer or use it as a refreshing finish to a spicy Indian meal.  I prefer to make rice pudding in the fall or winter, because a hot bowl of rice pudding makes for a very comforting dessert on a cold night.   Here is my recipe for basic rice pudding.  Note that the instructions differ depending on whether you’re planning on serving this cold or warm.  Also, try replacing some of the milk with evaporated milk or coconut milk, or try using sweetened condensed milk instead of sugar, but keep in mind that this may alter the cooking times.  (See my coconut and mango rice pudding recipe here.)

Note:  The texture of your rice pudding will depend on whether you’re using long or short grain rice.  According to the Joy of Baking, using long grain rice will result in a pudding that’s chewier and slightly drier.

Rice Pudding Recipe

serves 4; adapted from Lindaraxa’s Garden

1/2 cup white rice

1 1/2 cups water

2 cups milk (skim, 1% or 2%) if you are serving the pudding warm (use 3 cups if you are serving the pudding cold)

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 strip of lime peel (1 inch in width and the full length of the lime)

1/2 cup granulated white sugar  (Note:  If you prefer a sweeter rice pudding, use up to 3/4 cup.)

1 tsp Mexican vanilla extract

pinch salt

1/8 tsp ground cinnamon

Optional:  scant 1/4 cup raisins, plumped up in hot water for 10 minutes

Place the rice, lime peel, and water in a heavy bottomed pot.  Cover and bring to a boil over high heat.  Then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, around medium low.  Cook the rice, covered, until soft and all of the water is evaporated, about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the lime peel and discard.  Then stir in the milk, cream, sugar, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla extract.  Maintain a simmer and cook, uncovered, over medium low heat until thickened.  Stir occasionally to prevent burning.  This will take about 40 minutes.  Note that it will continue to thicken as it cools.  Add the raisins and allow them to heat through.

Then separate into bowls and add a light dusting of ground cinnamon or nutmeg (optional).  Serve warm.  Or, allow the rice pudding to cool completely.  Then chill it through in the refrigerator before serving cold.  To reheat leftover rice pudding, add 2 or 3 tbsp of milk per serving and heat gently, stirring regularly, in a heavy bottomed pot.

Note that rice pudding can be frozen.  Defrost completely and reheat gently in a heavy bottomed pot with 2 to 3 tbsp of milk per serving.

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