Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Rice pudding with salted caramel

When I used to work at Cook & Brown in Providence, I would sometimes end a shift by eating a bowl of this stuff. It's addictive. I'm not usually a rice pudding person, but this stuff is amazing.

I stumbled upon the recipe recently, and decided to make it at home.

I had decidedly mixed results. The pudding was a little runny, the caramel clumped, and so I didn't even bother folding in whipped cream at the end.

But you know what? Still delicious.

Reprinted below:

Rice Pudding:
1.5 cups heavy cream + 3/4 cup heavy cream for later use
2.25 cups whole milk
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon arborio rice (or any other short grained risotto rice)
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean, split in half and seeds scraped out

Salted Caramel:
1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (kosher salt will also work, but avoid table salt)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

For the rice pudding:

Place 1.5 cups heavy cream, milk, rice, sugar and vanilla bean and seeds in a medium sized, heavy bottomed sauce pan. Over medium-high heat bring to a boil, stirring every couple of minutes to prevent the rice from sticking to the bottom. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat to low and cook for 25-35 minutes or until the rice is cooked through and the liquid has reduced by about half. Pour into a casserole dish, remove the vanilla beans and place in the refrigerator. Every 15 minutes or so give the pudding a stir so that no clumps form while cooling.

For the caramel:

Pour the sugar in to a heavy bottomed, small to medium sized sauce pot and place over medium heat. Spread the sugar out in an even layer and wait until it begins to melt and turn a light amber color. When the edges being to caramelize, gently swirl the pan but do not stir with a spoon. When all of the sugar has turned an amber color, remove from the heat and add the butter. Once the butter is fully melted, slowly pour in the cream (Be aware that caramelized sugar is very hot. When adding the cream, the mixture may bubble up and sputter a little. Be very careful during this step.) If the sugar clumps up, simply place the pan back over low heat and stir until the caramel melts completely. Remove from the stove and stir in the salt. Set the caramel aside to cool down.

In a bowl or glass, alternate spoonfuls of the rice pudding with thin layers of caramel. Finish with a dollop of caramel on top and garnish with a few flakes of large grained sea salt.

Meanwhile, place the remaining 3/4 cup of heavy cream in a bowl or stand mixer and whisk until it forms medium peaks. Fold this into the rice pudding until the whole mixture is light and creamy.

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