I don’t know what it is about rice pudding, it’s not something I grew up eating, but I think it is the ultimate comfort food. I like it thick and creamy, studded with plumped raisins, and hot off the stove. And with the cool dampness settling in for the winter, combined with an enduring lack of sleep, I have been deeply craving comfort food. (That, and steaming hot bubble baths.)
My mother-in-law recently arrived with a suitcase full of all my favourite spices from India – the freshest cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, and cloves – so I’ve been using them in everything I can.
I tossed a cinnamon stick into my go-to rice pudding recipe along with a vanilla bean and a handful of raisins.
I stood at the stove stirring and tasting the warm pudding and deeply inhaling the sweet steam. It was like a much-needed warm hug. Now if only there was a pudding that feels like a nap.
The rice I used was Thai sticky (glutinous) rice – I had it on hand and wanted to find out if it would be a good substitute or arborio. It was great on the first day, but got too sticky overnight. Stick with arborio.
Feel free to substitute the vanilla bean for extract (just stir in a teaspoon at the very end) and/or the cinnamon stick for ground cinnamon (just swap in a teaspoonful at the same point in the recipe).
And I would totally support your decision to add an ounce of rum with the cream.
Cinnamon Raisin Rice Pudding
- 4 cups 2% or whole milk
- 1/2 cup arborio rice
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 cinnamon stick broken
- 1 vanilla bean scraped
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, bring milk to a boil with rice, raisins, sugar, butter, vanilla bean seeds, cinnamon stick and salt. Reduce to a simmer, and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 hour, until rice is very tender.
- Whisk egg yolks in a small bowl. Slowly add 1/2 cup of hot pudding to yolks, whisking constantly, to temper the eggs. Slowly whisk egg mixture into remaining pudding in saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly, 3-5 minutes, until pudding thickens. Remove from heat; stir in cream. Transfer to a shallow dish and chill 4 hours, up to overnight, pressing plastic wrap directly onto the surface to avoid a pudding "skin".