Leftover Rice? Time for Rice Pudding!

January 5, 2018

Okay, so it’s not the prettiest looking thing ever. But it’s warm and creamy and oh so easy. Like, really really easy.

So, somehow, between my dinners and other residents cooking for themselves while I was off-duty, we ended up with three separate containers (large ones) of leftover rice.  And it’s been cold, so I’ve been wanting comfort food.  Hence – this pile of sweet goo.

But like… I mean, I can’t even really give you a recipe because it’s so simple.  I mean, I can try… but really, just throw things on to simmer and do what feels right.

The goods:

leftover [plain, unflavored] cooked rice (pretty much any color of rice you like.)

your milk of choice (whole, lowfat, coconut, almond, soy, rice, hemp, whatever. really.)

cinnamon (This is technically optional but I would argue that I can’t imagine rice pudding without those warm cinnamon-y notes)

sugar

optional: raisins, dried cranberries, any dried fruits you like, any fresh fruits you like, nuts, chocolate/cocoa, other seasonings/extracts like rose water, or i dunno, honey, maple, lavender, really just play.

The method:

Get a big pot.  Plonk your leftover rice in the pot.  Just cover it with your milk.

Bring it to a simmer. Add some sugar. Stir to break up any rice clumps.

Simmer until pudding-y and gloppy, about… 20 minutes or so? Stir every now and again to make sure nothing is sticking to the bottom of your pot. I had to add more liquid once or twice, but I also cooked it a really long time so the rice grains really super broke down and became nice and gooey (glue-ey? that too). Add in your… whatevers.  I went with a couple handfuls of dried cranberries, a sprinkling of ground cardamom, a splash of rose water, and 4 mashed bananas (I also have a surplus of bananas in the house.)

Stir it in, have a taste, adjust from there.  If you want your dried fruits to get nice and plump, add some more liquid and simmer a bit longer.  Or stir in some more liquid, turn off the heat, and walk away and let the residual heat do its thing.

Dish it up! It can be enjoyed hot or cold, though my preference is warmed through with a splash of heavy cream. It will totally thicken up as it cools, which is fine.  If you don’t want it that way, just stir in some liquid when you’re going to eat it. There will probably eventually be a point where it stops sucking up every bit of liquid you chuck at it, but … really, in the grand scheme of things, that’s a very small concern when you’ve got a nice sweet bowl of rice pudding to chow down on.

Happy eating, my loves!

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