Baked Rice Pudding – you either love it or, well… you don’t.
As for me, I adore it. Cooked or baked, as in this case, it’s pure comfort food. Rice pudding has been around for centuries in many parts of the world – in England it’s understood to have been around at least since Tudor times. The fact that it’s still around today, in one form or another, says something for its stick-ability (pardon the pun).
This recipe comes from Donna Hay and it’s super simple – chuck all the ingredients into a baking dish, pop it into the oven and away it goes. The result is a perfectly creamy rice pudding – neither too ‘set’, nor too liquidy. It’s delicately sweet with notes of vanilla and citrus – in this case, I used warming orange rather than the lemon suggested in the original recipe. Together with a dollop of lightly whipped cream, it’s a perfect Sunday night or mid-week ‘pud’. It’s substantial enough to eat on its own or, if you want to pair it with something, you couldn’t go past good old apricots.
Oh, and just to mention… the original recipe says it serves six. I agree, if you’re into dainty servings. If, on the other hand, you like your rice pudding heaped into pudding plates as we do, I’d say make it four. Enjoy!
- 1/2 cup arborio rice
- 1 litre (33.8 fl oz) (2.1 pint) milk
- 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
- 2 tablespoons caster (superfine) sugar
- 4 pieces orange or lemon peel
- 20g (0.7 oz) buttter, chopped
- 1 extra tablespoon caster (superfine) or raw sugar
- Lightly whipped cream, to serve
- Preheat oven to 160ºC (320ºF).
- Place the rice in the base of a 7 cup-capacity (1.75 litre) shallow ovenproof dish (I used a pie dish). Add the milk, vanilla bean and seeds, sugar and citrus peel and stir to combine. Cover with aluminium foil and place on a baking tray to catch any spills.
- Carefully place the dish into the oven (it will be pretty full) and bake for 1 hour. Carefully take the dish out of the oven, remove the foil and stir - this will ensure the rice doesn't stick to the base as it cooks.
- Bake, uncovered, for a further 30-40 minutes. If you test the rice, it should be getting plump and tender and there will be skin forming on the top (this is perfectly fine).
- Remove the peel and dot the top with the butter, sprinkle with the extra sugar (I used raw sugar) and bake for a further 10–15 minutes or until the top is just starting to burn a little in places (I needed to put the grill/broiler on as it didn't brown after 15 minutes - if you choose to do this too, watch it very carefully as it will burn quickly!).
- Take out the pudding and place on a wire rack to cool (it's good served warm or at room temperature). Serve with a dollop of the whipped cream.
Food Photography Info: Canon 550D (EOS Rebel T2i); Sigma 30mm 1.4 DC ‘Art’ lens / Continuous Fluorescent Lighting Softbox