October 07, 2008

Indian Spiced Rice Pudding

1 3/4 cups water
1/2 cup uncooked jasmine rice
14 oz sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon mace blades*
1 cinnamon stick

In medium saucepan, bring water, rice, cardamom, mace cinnamon stick and salt to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 25 minutes. Stir in the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla. Continue to simmer uncovered, stirring frequently, about 10 minutes or until rice is tender. Remove the cinnamon stick. Serve hot or cold but it will thicken upon cooling.

*Short, orangish strands of mace, it looks similar to saffron. Substitute 1/2 teaspoon ground mace.

My thoughts:


When, to my horror, I discovered a mouse had nibbled on my bag of unsweetened coconut I was forced to make a sudden adjustment to my coconut squares plan. Unfortunately I had already started the recipe and was left with a can's worth of sweetened condensed milk I had already mixed with some vanilla. I wasn't sure how to use it. I had a pork roast in the oven so I knew I couldn't make something that required baking and the dozens of recipes for "magic" bars I found online held no appeal. I finally hit on the idea to try and think of something that creamy used a lot of milk and sugar with the hope that subbing sweetened condensed milk for those ingredients would work. After some serious thought I came up with the idea of making rice pudding. It uses a fair amount of milk and sugar and is made on the stove top. Luckily it worked-the rice was perfectly tender and the pudding just sweet enough. The Indian-inspired spices were a great choice, the dish was still homey but different enough from the traditional rice pudding to feel special.