rice pudding with bay leaf

A rice pudding with an Indian flair. Michelle made this for a Pongal party in 2007 and it was an instant hit with the many South Indians at the party.

Serves 4 to 6

  • 3/4 cup long-grain rice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 cups whole milk, approximately
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • Large pinch of salt
  1. Place rice in a small saucepan with bay leaf and 2 cups water, bring to a boil over high heat, then drain immediately. Transfer rice and bay leaf to a heavy 3-quart saucepan.
  2. Add 4 cups milk, 1/2 cup sugar, vanilla bean and salt. Place over very low heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until milk has been absorbed by rice, about 1 hour. Add 1 or 2 more cups milk, and continue cooking over low heat 15 to 20 minutes longer. Rice should be tender and mixture should be very creamy. Remove from heat, and allow to cool to room temperature.
We usually stop here and do not do the caramel that the Wednesday Chef suggested. I believe cardamom has been added in the past, but I may be mistaken.

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