Creamy, soft, and vanilla-scented rice pudding is an all-time favorite worldwide. I know you can’t resist its goodness too. Whatever and however you wish to cook your version, here are 5 incredibly useful tips on how to cook rice pudding.
The history of rice pudding is not really clear especially to where it came from. Records show that rice pudding was the final food that Gautama Buddha ate before his enlightenment.
Other books also mentioned rice pudding during the Victorian and Edwardian periods. It was described as modest, average, and common food often served to children or cripples.
Since then, rice pudding has bloomed from a boring menu to a diverse recipe worldwide. Asia, being its mother-continent, it has traveled across and witnessed several civilizations, religions, and cultures.
But how can you achieve the perfect, creamy, fragrant bowl of rice pudding? I listed down 5 essential tips you can take note of.
1. Choose Your Rice Wisely
Rice and milk are the central key ingredients of a rice pudding. The type of rice you use plays a pivotal role in making a perfect recipe for this comfort food.
As I was searching for an excellent way of cooking, I came across a lot of forums that talked about their failed rice puddings.
This is where I realized that rice variety matters and so I made a list of rice types you can use for your next rice pudding cravings.
If you notice, these rice types are starchy when cooked, and this is the essential component we need to achieve the perfect consistency.
These grains break down quickly and release more starch which will be the main consistency of your pudding. Milk, on the other hand, will give the creaminess and richness of the rice.
In the Middle East, they combine rosewater for aroma together with nuts and spices. However, I also found recipes that used long grain white rice such as Basmati rice and Jasmine rice.
They claimed that these varieties exude fantastic texture and fragrance.
2. Slow Cooking is the Best Method
Now that you know what rice types you can use for your next rice pudding recipe, let’s learn what is the best cooking method.
Some actually use a pressure cooker to hasten the process but according to the recipe I read, slow cooking your rice pudding helps release all the flavors there are.
You can use a slow cooker, or if you don’t have one, then you can use your typical rice cooker and leave it overnight. Modern rice cookers have rice pudding settings too which make it even more simple, or you can use the slow cook menu.
Remember that rice needs time to absorb the milk or water. You can cook it ahead of time or overnight if you want to start your day with a bowl of creamy rice pudding.
3. Add Eggs and Whipped Cream for Extra Flavor and Texture
I like my rice pudding creamy but achieving the right consistency is challenging especially when you followed the right amount of milk or water in the recipe.
Sometimes, I end up having a soupy texture. Then after trying out a few more rice pudding recipes, I used beaten eggs just to add some flavor.
Luckily, it thickened my pudding! 😀 A friend of mine suggested whipped cream to thicken rice pudding.
Eggs and whipped cream are two key thickeners we can use if ever our rice pudding comes out runny. You can add these ingredients while cooking or after the rice is soft.
Whipped cream adds an airy texture and a custardy flavor.
4. How to Prevent Skin from Forming on Your Rice Pudding
After your rice pudding cools down, a thin film forms on top of it similar to a skin. This is due to the water evaporation and coagulation of the proteins.
To prevent the skin from forming, you can gently press a plastic wrap or a parchment paper on top of the pudding surface.
Another effective method I found from a blog was letting the rice pudding sit until a skin forms then after 20 minutes or so, pour it into a bowl by going through a mesh strainer.
At this point, you can already divide it into portions and let it cool down uncovered.
Once the rice pudding has cooled down, cover the portions with a plastic wrap (you can cover from the lid only, no need to reach the pudding surface) and store in the fridge.
5. Top with Feelings
Yup, rice puddings need not be boring. We know that a basic recipe only calls for rice, milk or water, sugar or maple syrup and honey.
As this comfort food switches from dessert to the main course, your recipe also calls for more sophisticated ingredients. This is where your creativity matters, you can add fresh fruits and nuts, spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.
If you are preparing this for your kids, you can also add some chocolates, butter, and fruit jams.
Spiced Rice Pudding Recipe
If you are looking for a new and unique rice pudding recipe, perhaps, Gordon Ramsay can teach us how to make some fragrantly spiced rice pudding. Check out his recipe:
I hope you have learned a lot on these 5 incredibly useful tips on how to cook rice pudding post. I myself discovered a few more tricks to try later.
Perhaps, rice pudding is another recipe that unites the world. Although we have different ways of cooking, we all still enjoy the same bowl of goodness.
Rice pudding is easy to cook as long as you follow these recommendations from choosing the correct rice type, cooking method, and tips on how to prevent filming and adding toppings.
Do you have other rice pudding recipes to share? Comment below and we would love to try it too!