Monday, August 31, 2009

Before I Move: Operation Rice Pudding

My Grandma made fantastic rice pudding. I don't know how to describe it without indulging every hyperbolic adjective I can think of: scrumptious, amazing, delicious, delightful, comforting, creamy, delectable, etc. There was literally no other dessert we chillins liked as much. I remember when my cousin R impaled himself on a piece of rebar after jumping off a trampoline. My favorite part of that whole adventure was the fact that Grandma made him rice pudding every day he spent in the hospital ... and she always brought extra over to me, Echo and Charlie. (What can I say, JM Barrie was right: children are heartless. Hey, he survived, right? And became the semi-legendary Boy Without A Bellybutton. I think a little rice pudding gluttony on my part is nothing to be ashamed of.)

(Yes, I know that there are two sentence/sentence fragments in the aforementioned paragraph that improperly end with a preposition. Sue me.)

The first week of my freshman year in college, my grandma passed away. (There's another. Also passive voice?) Among the many things I regret not asking her before her passing is the rice pudding recipe. Ever since, I have been doomed to subpar cups of Jell-O 10 calorie ridiculousness.

Until now.

Among the many things I am planning to do during my pre-law firm period of underemployment (watch football, write a novel, improve my snowboarding, paint, travel, just generally make memories), I am going to figure out the rice pudding recipe for which my grandma was widely renowned. Between and endless willingness to taste test rice pudding samples, I think it can be done.

Sure, there are some problems with my plan. Namely, I'm not a very good cook, and may very well run across the correct recipe, but due to my own culinary shortcomings, fail to recognize it as such since it will taste nothing like the original. But I will persevere. And succeed. And overcome. And whatever.

Experiment Number One:

1 1/2 cups cooked rice
2 cups milk
1/3 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter
1 egg beaten
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
nutmeg or cinnamon (optional)

Combine rice, sugar, salt, and 1 1/2 cups milk in medium sized saucepan, cook on medium, stir until creamy and thick (15-20 minutes). Blend remaining milk and egg. Stir 2 minutes. Add butter and vanilla.

Verdict: Not quite sweet enough. Also, I definitely did something wrong - the egg didn't mix evenly, so there chunks of scrambled egg throughout the pudding. (Think ham fried rice style.) (Not as gross as I described it just now.) OK pudding, but not amazing. Possibly not thick enough? Also, I burned myself. (Not completely relevant, but worth mentioning.)

1 comment:

  1. Okay, had to sign in to clarify a few details: R actually just landed on the metal bar around the outside of the trampoline. The actual impalement of sorts was his intestines being punctured by a vertebrae. . .and, he still has a belly button. He actually has a scar that cut AROUND the belly button - especially to preserve it. So he's not quite that Kyle character from Kyle XY or whatever that show was.
    Mmmm, now I want rice pudding.