Friday, December 10, 2004

Sugar High Friday #3 – Spice up your winter!

For this edition of Sugar High Friday, the theme was spices. You had a choice, Cardamom, Allspice or Nutmeg. Or all three if you liked.

I decided to make Cardamom and Nutmeg infused Rice Pudding with Sugared Pistachios. I loosely based my recipe on Nigella’s – Emergency Stove Top Rice Pudding.

First I started with the Pistachios. I put 1/3 of a cup each of water and white sugar in a small pan and brought it to the boil. I added 1/3 cup of the nuts and let the whole mess simmer away for a while. Once the sugar had crystallized on each nut, I poured them out on Parchment to cool.

Here are the finished nuts:
Sugared Pistachios

Next I got started on the pudding. I put 250 mls of cream and 450 mls of milk into a Pyrex measuring cup with 10 Cardamom pods and a few grates of fresh nutmeg. Then I heated the milk/cream in the microwave for about 4 minutes. I let the flavours infuse while the milk cooled a little.

I got started on top of the stove with a tablespoon of butter and a tablespoon of sugar in a saucepan. Once the butter was melted I added 4 HEAPING tablespoons of Arborio rice. This pudding is made following the same process as risotto, so you need the Arborio for the right consistency.

Rice with Butter

I added a splash of milk/cream to the rice and let it cook down. And did it again and again. If you have ever made risotto you know that this is the tedious part. It took about a half hour to get the rice nice and soft and the milk/cream incorporated. At the end of the cooking I added a splash of vanilla, another tablespoon of sugar and another pat of butter.

Pudding is cooking

I heaped some of the pudding into a martini glass and sprinkled some nuts over the top.

Finished Pudding

Nigella claims her recipe feeds one, but that would be an awful lot of calories and pudding. I think you could easily stretch this to feed three or four, as a nice dessert after dinner.

The verdict?


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