This porridge (or pudding rather) brings such warmth and comfort.. it’s basically a dessert. At this time of year it’s very natural for us to crave warm comforting food, and a bowl of cinnamon dusted and honey or maple syrup drizzled creamy rice certainly is just that. It’s also very nourishing, energising and gentle on the tummy. Being rice based it’s a nice one for those that find oats too heavy or prefer or require gluten free styles of porridge. However, like any rice pudding it does take time to make, but if you have the time and don’t mind standing by the stove to stir and watch it’s totally worth it.
Years ago, while at University, my housemate and I would occasionally make a pot full of this on a cold Saturday morning, enjoying a bowlful topped with honey and cinnamon.. and then another bowlful around lunchtime. It was THE most delicious study fuel. And still today, I occasionally make it but often with fruit stirred in or served on top – banana is amazing, but also berries, poached fruit, grated apple or pear. Once cool it also keeps well in the fridge, so if you some left do keep it. It’s nice reheated the next morning with extra milk … or you might like it cold just like a chilled rice pudding dessert, why not.
Prep time: 5mins
Cooking time: ~20-25mins
This makes a generous amount for 2.
- 1/3 cup Arborio rice
- 1/2 water
- 1 cup milk
- ~ 1/4 of 1 vanilla bean, cut lengthways so that you can scrape out the seeds
- Extra boiling water: ~ 1/2 cup
- 1 apple or pear, grated (or if you prefer sliced banana, berries or poached fruit)
- Maple syrup or honey
- Chopped nuts and/or seeds
- Cacao powder, or cacao nibs (if you want to be fancy, these are also really nice as toppings)
- In a saucepan add rice and 1/2 cup of water, bring to the boil and then reduce to simmer, stirring so that the rice soaks up the water evenly.
- Once rice absorbs water, scrape the vanilla bean seeds from inside the pod and add to the rice and add the vanilla bean pod too, then add some milk (about 1/4 cup at a time ) while stirring here and there. As the milk is absorbed add more until you’ve used all milk.
- Once all milk is absorbed check the softness of the rice, if still too firm add some boiling water (about 1/4 of a cup), and stir, you may need to add up to 1/2 cup, depending on whether you like your rice soft or ‘al dente’.
- Add grated apple (or if you prefer pear, sliced banana or other fruit), and stir in for a moment to warm the fruit.
- Serve with cinnamon, honey or maple syrup, chopped nuts, seeds, extra cold milk if you like, and or any other toppings. And enjoy, slowly. With a coffee and the paper perhaps. Just bliss.