Rice pudding

Did anyone else ever feel cheated when you found out your Mom was making rice pudding for dessert as a child?
Surely that wasn’t only me. I have distinct memories of watching my mom prepare rice pudding, secretly hoping it was tapioca pudding. More often than not, it was rice pudding. At the time, it seemed absolutely crazy to me that my mom could ever fathom using rice in a dessert…crazy, and well disgusting.
To top things off, she used to also put raisins in with the rice pudding. If the rice wasn’t enough to turn me away from dessert, the raisins were. 
Somehow, over the last fifteen or so years, I have actually grown to like rice pudding. Really like it actually.  I actually am really confused as to why I didn’t gobble this up as a child. To be completely honest, I’m not sure I ever tried it when I was little. I was really missing out.

Rice pudding is delicious. Creamy, with a hint of cinnamon, it is a perfect dessert. It actually makes a really good breakfast also. I’ve been enjoying leftover rice pudding for breakfast, after lunch, and before dinner.  My wedding diet obviously has not started.

Something tells me my wedding diet is actually never going to start.

Rice Pudding
From Mary Jane Diaz
1 cup rice (short grain)
5 cups water
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks cinnamon
3-4 strips fresh lemon rind
2 tbsp butter
1 13 ounce can condensed milk
1 can evaporated milk
2 tbsp vanilla

In a dutch oven with lid, place water, salt, butter, cinnamon sticks and lemon rind. Bring to a boil. Add rice and stir well.  Bring the heat to a simmer, and cover the pans, first with foil, then the lid.  Cook 45 minutes with lid on.  After the time has elapsed, remove the lid and foil. Add both condensed and evaporated milk. Stir together well.  If you prefer a thicker pudding, let simmer for a few more minutes.  Once it has reached desired thickness, stir in vanilla and remove lemon rind and cinnamon sticks.

Cool and top with cinnamon and nutmeg.

This recipe came courtesy of a dear family friend. My mom and dad have enjoyed her rice pudding for as long as I can remember. I have enjoyed it for the last ten years or so.

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