Friday, June 27, 2014

Rice Pudding

For most Swedes rice pudding is something that you eat for Christmas. In December, you can even find it in lunch restaurants, paired with ham sandwich. In our house, it´s traditional to eat it on the night of the 23rd, when the Christmas ham has been cooked and is ready for a tasting. One year it tasted so good we finished the entire ham and had to make a new one for Christmas Eve! Personally, I think rice pudding is the most wonderful comfort food imaginable, and I make it often. Many of my friends think it is messy to make (you boil rice with milk and it tends to boil over if you so much as look in another direction, which makes it feel as if it takes ages) and prefer to buy it ready-made (not at all as good) from the store, but I have a magic recipe, and I will now share it with you. I found it in "Bonniers Nya Kokbok" by Britt Sandquist-Bolin and it is called Vera´s Nice Christmas Pudding (= Veras fina julgröt).

Cook 200 ml glutinous rice with 800 ml water, 1 tablespoon sugar, and 1 teaspoon salt. Let it cook very slowly, it should just seethe for about 45 minutes. When it is done, whip 250 ml whipping cream to a hard foam, and stir it into the hot rice. Let it to sit for ten minutes or so before you serve it.

I have done a calorie count, and using cream instead of milk does not make the pudding any fatter, rather the opposite, actually, as you are using such a small amount compared to using milk. The consistency is much lighter this way, and the taste - well, it´s just rice and dairy, how different can it be? The home-made versions are all good, but this one is so much easier on the nerves. Unless you manage to burn the rice, you simply can´t fail. 

Traditionally, at Christmas, we have it with cinnamon, sugar, and milk. I prefer my milk in a glass, and apple sauce on the pudding, but to each his own. Berries of any kind is good, but I don´t mind serving it with fried spicy sausage and onion, which may be treading a bit on the wild side for most. But I guess that shows how much I love it!

I really recommend mixing cold pudding with fried leek or onion, fried mushrooms and an egg, bake it in the oven to a nice brown and serve with bacon. Yum! Actually, some grated cheese probably would be nice in the mix, must try that next time...

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