Rice pudding

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It’s rather bold of me, I know, but comparing myself to chef Gordon Ramsay, recently, I came up with these similarities. His mother was a cook in a tea room, and mine was a cook in a pizzeria. Ramsay played soccer, the national pastime in the UK, as a child, and I played hockey, the national pastime in Canada. We both aspired to be professional athletes and ended up in food. Gordon Ramsay knows how to use the “f” word, and so do I.

So, what’s the difference between Ramsay and me? I write a cooking column for the Seaway News, and he doesn’t!

Seriously, though, Ramsay has some interesting comments in the intro to his cookbook, Cooking for Friends, that I want to share with you. “I’d rather spend more and eat less,” he says, “buy the best quality ingredients and savour them, buy what we need and no more.” And he adds that he finds it “embarrassing when I see the amount of food that we... waste.”

Like me, Ramsay likes to involve his children in the work of the kitchen--the cooking and the cleaning. “The naughtiest child on the day gets to do the washing up,” he writes. “Whoever’s not on washing-up duty will set the table.” He’s not worried his children may not pursue careers in cooking, but he wants “to know that they can fend for themselves in the kitchen.” Good idea!

Rice Pudding

This week, for a change, we’re featuring a dessert. I got this recipe for rice pudding from Ann G. a friend of Helen’s. It’s a tasty rendition of rice pudding, which I usually make once or twice every winter.

Ingredients

1/2 cup Arborio rice

1 quart (4 cups) milk

1/2 cup raisins

1/3 cup butter

3 eggs, slightly beaten

1/2 cup sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1/4 tsp. salt

cinnamon or nutmeg

Method

Mix rice with 2 cups of milk, in double boiler. Place over hot water and cook until rice is tender. Add raisins and butter.

Combine eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt and remaining milk. Blend well. Stir egg mixture into hot rice. Pour into 11/2 quart baking dish. Sprinkle with cinnamon or nutmeg. Set in a baking pan and fill the pan half way up with hot water.

Bake at 325˚ to 350˚ for 40-50 minutes. A custard forms on top. Insert knife; when it comes out clean, pudding is cooked. Great as is or with a bit of maple syrup over top. Serves 6 to 8. Enjoy!

To re-heat leftovers, add a little milk.

Now, let’s get cooking!

tombutkovich@cogeco.ca

Organizations: Seaway News

Geographic location: UK, Canada

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