Rice pudding is a staple breakfast around here – rich, filling, and slightly sweet, it always makes the kids happy! I usually make a fish and rice dinner on Friday evenings, so I just make extra rice to use on Saturday morning!
We prefer our rice pudding chilled, but it is just as delicious when it’s hot. Depending on your preferences, you can make it right when you want to eat it, or you can make it the night before and have it ready to go in the fridge.
Start with leftover or freshly cooked rice. I use about 1/2 cup cooked rice per person. Dump the rice in a heavy pot. For 6 servings, I usually use a 3-quart pot.
Add enough milk to cover the rice.
It doesn’t look like much right now, but it will be delicious and creamy soon! Add sugar or honey next.
My ratio of rice:milk:sugar is 2:4:1. That’s 2 parts rice, 4 parts milk, 1 part white sugar.
Next, add cinnamon and/or nutmeg to taste.
Cook over medium-low heat, stirring every few minutes, until the rice is nice and soft. This usually takes about half an hour. If you’re using freshly made rice, it may take less time. Be careful not to scorch the bottom!
While you wait, prepare your eggs. My rule of thumb is 1 egg per cup of milk. You could certainly add more if you want a more custard-like pudding. In case you haven’t noticed, this is an extremely flexible recipe!
(Optional: separate and set aside whites. They can be beaten into meringue at the end to make your rice pudding extra creamy and light!)Whisk eggs thoroughly or run them through a blender. Slimy strings are to be avoided at all costs!
When your rice mixture is soft and warm, you’ll need to temper the eggs. This means slowly bringing the temperature up so that the eggs don’t scramble. Do this by adding one spoonful of hot milk/rice at a time.
When the eggs are hot, slowly pour them into the pudding, stirring the entire time. (Pretend I’m stirring. I didn’t have enough hands to do this and take pictures at the same time!)
Continue cooking and stirring until the pudding thickens. It will be the consistency of thin oatmeal when it’s done. You can continue cooking liquid off or even add a bit of cornstarch if you’d like it to be thicker.
At this point, you can consider yourself done! Cool and serve.
OR, if you separated your egg whites, dump them into a stand mixer. You could also use a hand mixer. Beat the whites until frothy, then add a tablespoon of sugar for every 2 egg whites. 4 eggs = 2 tbsp sugar. Continue beating at high speed until peaks form. Carefully fold the meringue into the cooled pudding and enjoy!
Note: If you include the meringue, there will be some raw egg white in your finished pudding. If you’re not comfortable with this, don’t separate the eggs before adding them to the pudding.