Rice pudding with cardamom & rhubarb
A sumptuous recipe for a modern take on rice pudding. I no longer buy pudding rice especially to make this, instead I use either risotto or sushi rice (which I always have in the cupboard), their short grains produce the creamy, sticky texture that makes this so good.
The rhubarb brings some beautiful bright pink colour and a nice balance of acidity, but the key ingredient here is the cardamom which gives it a whisper of fragrant exoticism.
This recipe originally appeared in the May 2022 edition of House and Garden magazine. Photograph courtesy of Nassima Rothacker.
For the rice pudding:
- 700ml full fat milk
- 500ml double cream
- 100g caster sugar
- 6 cardamom pods, lightly crushed
- 1 vanilla pod, split in half
- 130g risotto or sushi rice
For the rhubarb:
- 500g rhubarb (approx 5-6 stalks)
- 50g sugar (caster or soft brown sugar if you have it)
- 1 orange
- 4cm piece of ginger, peeled
To cook the rice pudding:
- Preheat the oven to 160°C.
- Put the milk, cream, sugar, cardamom in a large saucepan. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla pod and add to the milk along with the pod. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat.
- Choose a baking dish large enough to fit all milk and cream, with a bit of extra room so it doesn’t slosh over the sides when you put it in the oven.
- Scatter the rice over the bottom of the dish and carefully ladle the milk mixture into the dish so the rice remains evenly distributed.
- Bake in the oven for 1hr 20 mins, after which time, check the skin isn’t getting too brown. If it is, turn down the oven for the final 30 minutes of cooking.
To cook the rhubarb:
- Top and tail the stalks and cut into finger length batons. Lay them in a single layer in a baking tray and sprinkle with sugar. Peel 4 lengths of zest from the orange, using a peeler. Add this to the rhubarb along with the orange juice. Finally grate the ginger over and toss the rhubarb so it is well coated.
- Bake for 20 minutes (in the same oven as the pudding, preferably on the shelf below) until the rhubarb is tender but not mushy.
- Allow the rhubarb to cool a little before serving, it makes a good temperature contrast to the hot rice pudding.