I have a confession....
I love rice. I love rice a lot. One of the best purchases I've ever made was my rice cooker. I use it all the time. Without it however, I find I dont make the most perfect rice. The perfect storm of temperature, time and stirring continues to elude me. But when I saw this recipe for rice pudding I was bound a determined to make rice the old fashioned way. Rice pudding is so wholesome, warm and comforting. It is a blend of sweet and creamy, warm and soothing. We had a little cold snap here over the weekend so I am really revelling in the cooler weather and wanting to make fall weather foods. This is a lovely recipe I found at The Sophisticated Gourmet
¾ cup of long grained rice
2 ½ cups milk
1 cup water plus 1 tablespoon
Pinch of salt
1 ½ tablespoons of honey
3 tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract (or ½ the scrapings of a vanilla bean)
⅛ of a teaspoon of ground cinnamon
30 Raisins (optional)
Bring rice, milk, and water to a boil on high heat.
After the rice comes to a boil, place on medium heat.
Add the salt, honey, brown sugar, white sugar, and vanilla to the rice and whisk / stir in until well distributed.
Stir the rice pudding often. Cook for about 40 minutes (still on medium heat) or until the rice is tender and creamy. I would go with the latter because everyone’s stove is different. So, just check your rice every so often to see if it’s tender. Be careful not to burn your mouth!
After the rice pudding has fully cooked, stir in the raisins and serve in a large bowl or serving bowls. You can eat the rice pudding warm or cold (I prefer the latter). I also like to sprinkle some extra sugar on the top of the rice pudding and a dusting of cinnamon, but that’s optional as well.
• Remember to stir often! You don’t want a skin to form on top of the rice and you don’t want anything to burn, if you rice still isn’t tender after about 50 minutes of cooking and the mixture seems a bit dry, just breathe! As long as nothing has burned, just add a bit more milk and a bit more water. Maybe a tablespoon of each.. And don’t forget to stir often!
Umm.. Seriously, dont forget to stir often. I, early on in the rice cooking stage, remembered I needed to change a light bulb in my closet and scampered off to change it quickly. That was a mistake. The rice got stuck to the bottom of the pan. Argh. I continued on with all the directions, determined to make decent rice on my own. The fragrance created by these ingredients is amazing. Vanilla, honey, brown sugar, milk. Combined together into a soft sweet infusion of earthy and sweet goodness for the rice to soak up. The flavors in this milky sweet broth are lovely. I was filling up spoons of just the liquid to sample and taste, over and over again. Sadly, my rice never achieved the soft and creamy texture I was craving. It kept a little bit of crunch in the rice. I added more milk and water at the end as suggested but Im afraid I never recovered from my error early on, letting the rice stick to the pan. It was still yummy, just not perfect. And I seek perfection. The whole experience left me wondering, could I cook rice pudding in my rice cooker? Perhaps that will be my next experiment with rice pudding. But I highly recommend this recipe. The flavors are wonderful, but dont abandon the rice - even for a moment!