Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Baked Rice Pudding with Peaches & Buttered Almonds

Last week, I left off with a recipe for savory rice cakes using Arborio rice.

I was featuring meal ideas using complex carbohydrates like vegetables, and grains such as Arborio rice, which is a high-starch complex carb.

Because it is high in starch, Arborio rice also lends itself well to desserts since it's sweet and sticky. And so today I'm have a recipe to share which capitalizes on those qualities.

I made this dessert for a Christmas party last week, in fact all the desserts I'll share this week I made for the same party.

They present beautifully and they're the kind of non- traditional desserts I talked about in my pre-Thanksgiving posts.

For example, the holiday desserts I'm posting this week are not pies, but they are:
  • budget-friendly,
  • simple to make,
  • made up of seasonal ingredients, and
  • because they're substantial desserts, serving just one with ice cream or whipped cream for your Christmas dinner would be ample.
Baked Rice Pudding with Peaches & Buttered Almonds
1) Pour 1 cup of Arborio rice into a pot with 2 cups of water.
2) Gently cook over low for about 15 mins.
3) Now add two cups of milk, and half a cup of raisins to the rice. Stir well. Cook a further 25 mins or until the rice is soft and has a risotto-like consistency.
4) Spoon cooked rice into a large mixing bowl and allow it to cool.
5) To the cooled rice add your favorite spice or a selection such as a teaspoon of cinnamon, half teaspoon nutmeg, one-quarter teaspoon cloves, one teaspoon ginger.
6) Add a half cup of soft brown sugar or you can substitute the sugar for honey or agave or even half a cup of orange marmalade.
7) Now add half a cup of ground almonds (optional) and the zest of one lemon.
8) Pour rice mix into a food processor and blend well.
9) Do a taste test; does it need more of one spice, more sweetener, more lemon zest?
10) Pour blended rice mix back into your mixing bowl; add 3 large eggs or 4 small eggs.
Optional: If you have some leftover eggnog, or an open bottle of Baileys you might like to add a half cup of one or the other; if you do add additional liquid, make it 4 eggs rather than three.
11) Using a fork gently beat eggs (& eggnog or Baileys) into rice mix and then spoon mix into a baking dish and bake in a 350-degree oven for about 30 mins.
12) Sit rice pudding atop a wire rack to cool.

To Serve: I decorated the top of my pudding with peaches, which had been bottled this past summer. You could use a tin of peaches, perhaps marinade them in a cup of brandy first, pouring the marinade over the pudding once you've laid the peaches around the top.

I then tossed a half cup of slivered blanched almonds in a skillet with a dob of butter and browned the almonds, dotting the peaches and the edge of the pudding with the almonds.

I served the pudding with a bowl of whipped cream to which I'd added a little icing sugar, the zest of half a lemon, a pinch of nutmeg and a half teaspoon of cinnamon.

No comments: