"ROZE BE LEBAN" EGYPTIAN RICE PUDDING

Rice pudding:  This is one of the most common desserts in Egypt and during Ramadan, when food is nothing but indulgent, it is eaten nearly everyday. There are a few different ways to make it depending on which family you ask. Recipe books are not common place in Egyptian households.  Instead recipes are passed down though families.  They are generally the same but there are small variations depending on the family you ask.

 

The way explained below is how my father’s wife’s family prepares it.

 

The BEST thing about Egyptian rice pudding is that unlike its western sisters you don’t have to use short grain rice. Though I recommend using Egyptian short grain rice you can just use whatever rice is in your cupboard and that you usually have hanging around for when you make any savoury dish.

 

 

Ingredients:

·         200g Rice

·         1 ¼ Litre (2 pints) of Milk

·         285ml (½ pint) Water

·         150g Sugar (yes Egyptians have a sweet tooth ….that is If they have any left)

·         1-3 teaspoons of Cornflower (if needed)

·         At least two of the following to garnish: Traditional: dry coconut (a must in my eyes), sultanas, raisins, crushed pistachios, cinnamon, or honey. Or try some modern alternatives such as dried cranberries, maple syrup, fresh mango/papaya/pineapple/kiwi…….

 

      METHOD:

Add the water and rice to a saucepan.

Bring it to boil and then allow it to simmer. 

When the water has almost gone the rice should be half cooked and starting to go soft, if not add some more water and repeat.

Once the rice is half cooked, add the milk and bring to the boil.

Break up and stir the rice while it cooks  a further 10min.

Then check if the rice is fully cooked, if not allow it to simmer for a further 5min and check again (adding more milk IF NEEDED).

Once the rice is cooked add the sugar.

TIP: my tip is to first liquidise the dry sugar, this gives it a caster sugar consistency and allows it to dissolve into the milk quicker.

Gently stir to ensure the sugar dissolves.

At this point leave the rice to simmer for a f minute to let the rice absorb the sugar taste.

If the rice is still really moist then stir in a teaspoon of cornflower so it gives a thick gluey consistency (you may need to add more cornflower or none at all).

Once the mixture has a thickened consistency and the rice has cooked through, dispense it in to individual bowls. 

Allow  it to cool so it is at a suitable temperature for putting in the fridge to cool.

Serve cold with the toppings of your choice. and a splash of milk. Mmmmmmmm!

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