Rich Rice Pudding

Serves 6 to 8
Whole milk, rice, sweet spices, and sugar combine for a perfect unctuous texture. Rum-soaked raisins make it a sophisticated dessert, but they can also be omitted. Serve with added whipped cream for those who can afford the extra calories. Otherwise, top with fresh or stewed fruit. Serve warm from the pot, or chilled. Either way, it’s creamy and irresistible.


  • 1/4 cup currants or raisins (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons golden rum (optional)
  • 3 cups half-and-half or whole milk
  • 1/2 cup rice, preferably jasmine or basmati
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 plums, sliced


1. If using the currants, soak them in the rum in a small bowl.
2. Place the half-and-half, rice, sugar, salt, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, continuing to stir.
3. Drain the currants and stir them into the pudding, then cook for an additional 2 minutes, or until the rice is al dente. Spoon the pudding into bowls and serve immediately, or spread it into a serving dish, cover, and chill. Press plastic wrap directly on the surface of the pudding to prevent it from forming a skin (unless you like it!).
4. Serve pudding in a bowl along with slices of fresh plums.

cook's note
Stewed Fruit Topping
When you have too much fruit, or it’s become too soft for snacking, make a sweet sauce. Peel and cut fruit—such as apples, pears, peaches, or nectarines, or a mixture of all—into H-inch pieces. Place in a small saucepan with G cup water; 2 teaspoons of honey, pure maple syrup, or sugar; and a squeeze of lemon juice, if you like. Cover and simmer until soft. If you’re using dried fruit, soak it in boiling water for 10 minutes, then drain and cook as directed.
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