Someone reminded me today that it's important to count our blessings, appreciate those around us wherever they might be and to always remember that no matter how dark or stormy life is..
That joy can be found in the simplest of things or smallest of friendships..
So on this rainy, cold, damp April day here in New York I decided to let a little warmth & joy into my life by slowly cooking up some Risotto Rice—but not just any risotto, it's "Sugar & Spice Risotto"
Because a little "Sugar & Spice" makes everything nice to paraphrase that old rhyme—especially on a blustery wet and icky day, such as today..
Mmm, sounds so tasty just thinking about it—that creamy soft risotto made even thicker, sweeter and creamier..
Now to get down to work, the fun part for me..
In one pot goes my mix of heavy cream, and milk, heated till nice and hot. (But not boiling or scorched, like making hot chocolate from scratch)
While next to it in my small cast iron sauce pan goes three tablespoons of butter—heated til just turning brown then tossed with a cup of Arborio rice and cooked for a few minutes, followed by a splash of dark rum..
Then, just like making risotto, cover with cream and cook stirring till it's almost completely absorbed before adding more of the cream mixture..
Now while that's cooking I threw together a mix of dark brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger and allspice to add near to the end..
Continue stirring and adding cream til almost all of your cream is added and the rice has softened, then toss in your mix of "Sugar & Spice" along with the vanilla—stirring it in and adding more cream to finish..
I like to cook this rice pudding up into a looser texture by adding just a bit more milk and heavy cream, but you don't have to..
It’s hearty. It's spiced..
It’s creamy and sweet. It’s filling and it might just be the most comforting bowl of goodness I’ve ever encountered—will it be sure to add a little joy and warmth to your day..
I think so...
So try this dessert yourself on a wet cold spring day in the North East, like me, or anywhere or at any time of year—I think you'll find that it's, without a doubt, oh so "Definitely Delish"
"Sugar & Spice Risotto Rice Pudding"
2 tablespoon unsalted Irish Butter
1 cup Arborio Rice
3 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup of Heavy Cream
1/4 cup Dark Brown Sugar
1/2 teaspoon Himalayan Pink Salt or Sea Salt
2 teaspoons Dark or Amber Rum
1/4 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon Allspice
Pinch of fresh ground Cloves
Pinch of fresh ground Nutmeg
Pinch of powdered Ginger
1 tablespoon pure Vanilla Extract
Sprinkle of Cinnamon Sugar for garnish
1. In a medium saucepan, over low heat, scald 3 1/2 cups of milk and 1/2 a cup of heavy cream. 2. Bring the milk mixture to just under boiling, turn off the flame and let it rest..
3. In a large saucepan, over low heat, melt the butter. Add the rice grains and stir to coat, then cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Follow with the splash of rum..
4. Now add in just enough of the hot milk mixture to cover the rice. Stir over the low flame. The rice will begin to absorb the cream. When the it is almost fully absorbed, ladle in more of the hot milk. Stir until absorbed..
5. Continue repeating this process, standing over the stove, constantly stirring the creamy rice..
6. Taste the rice as you near the end of the milk. Just like a good risotto, it's important to know how to gauge when it's ready. Check as you begin the 3rd cup of milk and keep on eye on it—you may only need 3 1/2 cups instead of 4 cups..
7. As you add the last bit of milk, also incorporate the dark brown sugar, pink or sea salt, spices, and vanilla extract..
8. Stir well to combine. It should only take around 15 to 20 minutes to finish once you're adding cream—you want the rice to still have a hint of bite to it and not be completely mushy in consistency..
1. I like this rice pudding slightly loose. If you want it thicker, continue to cook it for a bit longer. Serve warm or cold, with fresh berries, cinnamon sugar or as is..
2. Risotto Rice pudding will last, in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to 4 days maximum..