Vanilla Bean Rice Pudding
I am a big fan of rice pudding. It really takes me back to being a kid. I can remember being with all of my cousings enjoying Swiss Miss and Kozy Shack puddings. It was such a treat. This recipe is by far my favorite rice pudding recipe. I started using it back in my catering days and makes for a beautiful presentation when served individually.
Yield: 8 individual tea cups
Rating: Easy and very few ingredients, but you have to pay attention and babysit the pot while it's cooking.
¾ cup Arborio rice (you can also use Carolina rice)
2 cups water
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 1/3 cups whole milk
¼ cup sugar (you can do 1/3 cup of sugar if you like things sweeter - I have a light hand)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or 1 whole vanilla bean, insides scraped out
Rinse your rice in cold water and place in a saucepan with your salt and 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil and simmer covered for ten minutes. Drain any excess water. Add to the same pot your milk and sugar. Bring up to low boil and cook for 20 minutes (start counting once you see it boiling). You must be diligent about mixing (I like to use a wood spoon or silicone spatula). I like to mix every minute for about 8 seconds until you are down to the last five minutes where I mix every 30 seconds until finished. Try not to over cook the pudding because then you will lose your creamy texture and end up with just rice.
Cool the mixture enough so you can get it into a container. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the pudding so it is covered completely. Push down with your hands to ensure everything is sealed. Then cover with the container’s top and put into the fridge.
On the day you plan to serve, take the pudding out of the fridge 30 minutes before so it is not so cold. With a silicone spatula, mix well until the pudding looks nice and creamy. Dish your pudding into individual dishes – like teacups, shot glasses or dessert bowls. Sprinkle with cinnamon and garnish with some berries.
You can make the pudding up to four days in advance And keep in an airtight container with a piece of plastic wrap pressed up against the pudding.