Spice It Up!
Part of my childhood was spent in Venezuela. What a beautiful country and what beautiful memories. When my friend, Alex, who now lives in Florida, asked that I recreate his favorite dessert ... I said yes right away.
I own a softcover cookbook that was given to me by my Venezuelan sister-in-law when I was last there in 1991. "Dulceria Criolla" by Emma de Barboza. I adapted this recipe from the original.
1 cup long-grain rice (rinsed a few times until water comes out clear)
2 cups water
6 cups of milk
1½ to 2 cups of sugar (start with 1½ cups - I found 2 cups to be a bit sweet)
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons of vanilla extract
4 cinnamon sticks
cinnamon powder for dusting
For later: ¼ cup of coconut-flavored rum and ½ cup raisins
1. In a large pot put water and rice to boil stirring for about 8-10 minutes until water evaporates and rice has softened.
2. Add milk, cinnamon sticks and bring to boil; then add sugar and salt.
3. Lower heat and begin to simmer. Stir frequently so as not to clump. This took over an hour. Taste the consistency; if you want it softer, cook a bit longer. It all depends on your rice.
4. Let cool.
5. Take half of the rice and place it in a bowl for children and non-drinkers.
6. Meanwhile, place your raisins in rum to macerate (I put in microwave for about a minute - no more). Once your raisins have plumped, add to the rice and mix. Let cool. You may also add raisins with out the rum to the plain rice.
7. Plate and serve, sprinkling cinnamon powder over the rice pudding.
Other recipes by Norma:
Carne Guisada (Beef Stew)
Frijoles Negros (Black Beans)
Surullitos de Maiz con Mayoketchup and Bacalaitos Fritos
Piña Colada Flan
Barriguitas de Vieja
Supercharged Coquito (with Bacardi 151)