RECIPE: Embrace your inner dag
THERE'S something incredibly comforting about a good rice pudding, particularly in the winter months.
Over the past few years I have crossed to the Dark Side, so to speak, and been making this childhood favourite with black glutinous rice and coconut milk for an Asian-inspired hit of vegan yumminess.
But this week, with friends coming for dinner amid howling windstorms and chilly temperatures (and being all out of black rice in my pantry) I embraced my inner dag and made the version my mum used to make.
Medium or short-grain rice works best for this dessert. Try calrose, sushi or Arborio varieties, as long-grain rice won't give you the creamy texture you need.
You can flavour rice pudding with dried fruit and a touch of cinnamon or nutmeg, and it's delicious with vanilla stirred through. When buying vanilla, avoid the imitation essence if you can. The real deal is a little more expensive, but you don't need much and it lasts well in the pantry after opening.
Creamy rice pudding
3/4 cup uncooked calrose, sushi or Arborio rice
1 3/4 cups milk, divided
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 large free-range egg, beaten
1/3 cup sultanas
1 tbs unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla essence or
1/2 tsp vanilla paste
1 tsp ground cinnamon or nutmeg
METHOD: Place rice in a medium saucepan and add boiling water to 1cm above the level of the rice.
Bring to the boil, cover and reduce heat to very low; steam rice until all water is absorbed and rice is tender, about 15 minutes.
While rice is cooking, combine 1 1/4 cups of the milk with the sugar and salt.
Heat on low until hot, then add the rice and cook, stirring gently, until creamy - about 15 minutes.
Stir through remaining milk, egg and sultanas and cook for a further two minutes, stirring gently.
Remove from heat and stir through vanilla and butter. Divide into four bowls or cups and sprinkle with cinnamon or nutmeg.
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