Monday, June 4, 2012

Cinnamon-Sugar Rice Pudding with Bourbon-Soaked Raisins

In my experience, there are certain foods that most people strongly like or dislike, with very little middle ground. Avocados, anchovies, mayonnaise, mushrooms, and olives all seem to fall into this category. I happen to love all of those foods, and I'm willing to bet that all of you reading have a strong opinion one way or the other about each of them as well. You never hear someone say that they could take or leave anchovies. Either you love 'em, or you don't.

This post is not about anchovies - it's about another food that is oftentimes polarizing. Most people either love rice pudding, or are completely put off by it. I've always been a fan, and when I was trying to think of a dessert to make that hadn't yet appeared on A Bitchin' Kitchen, rice pudding was one of the first things that came to mind.

I adapted a recipe from the Joy the Baker Cookbook, and threw in some raisins that I soaked overnight in bourbon and vanilla. If you make this, try and avoid eating too many of the booze-saturated raisins before adding them to your dessert. They are super-duper delicious, and I kind of wanted to just eat them as a snack...

Here's what you'll need:

For the pudding: 

1/2 cup raisins
Vanilla extract
2 cups water
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup long-grain white jasmine rice
3 cups whole milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

For the topping:

1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
Extra grated orange zest (optional)

The day before you want to make this, add your raisins to a small bowl. Pour bourbon over the raisins until they're just covered, and add a splash of vanilla. Stir to combine, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside somewhere away from curious pets and children. Warning: your home will kind of smell like a distillery until you're ready to use these.

When you're ready to make the pudding, drain raisins and set aside. Rinse the rice thoroughly (I swish it around in a big bowl of water, pour it through a fine mesh sieve, and repeat a couple times until it's no longer foamy.) In a large saucepan over medium heat, boil 2 cups of water. Add the orange zest, salt, and jasmine rice, and stir. Return to a boil, and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Turn heat to simmer, and let the rice cook for 15 minutes (until water is absorbed) without opening the lid or stirring.

Remove the cooked rice from the saucepan and set aside. In a new saucepan, combine the milk, sugar, and cinnamon. Heat over low until the milk is warm, and the sugar dissolves, whisking occasionally.

Add the cooked rice to the pot, and stir often until the milk reduces, and the texture becomes creamy and pudding-like, 20-25 minutes. It will look like there is a lot of liquid in the pot for the first 15 minutes or so, but trust me - it will thicken! If the mixture starts to bubble too much at any point, turn the heat down to simmer. Right before you're ready to remove the pudding from the heat, stir in the butter until it melts, and add in the drained raisins.

Allow the pudding to cool and thicken for 10-15 minutes before serving. This can also be served cold, but you may need to add a little milk after removing it from the fridge to loosen the consistency.

To make the topping, mix together the cinnamon and sugar, and sprinkle on top before serving.

Source: Adapted from Cinnamon-Sugar Rice Pudding, via the Joy the Baker Cookbook


  1. Looks so so delicious. I love Joy the Baker's cookbook. I drool over all her recipes.

    1. Thanks! Me too...I have sooo many of the pages in there bookmarked for future use.

  2. Oh, this is my kind of comfort food!! Love this....Joy the Baker cookbook is really great!

  3. I am definitely a rice pudding lover! This looks delicious!!

    1. Hurray :) I don't get non-rice pudding lovers - it's awesome!

  4. well, i'm on your team - team rice pudding! i think it's absolutely delicious + your version looks fab, especially those bourbon-soaked raisins. YUM!

  5. I have never had true rice pudding, just the nasty glop you buy in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. ew. I really do like arroz con leche though and that has similar flavors. This looks lovely though--so much better than store bought!

    1. Ohh, definitely try it if you've only ever had the grocery store kind. This is infinitely better!

  6. I've never really made rice pudding before but man am I anxious to make these! Those raisins sound to die for!

  7. wow, that sounds so delicious right now! mm!! thanks for sharing! so glad to have found your blog!

  8. I put bourbon soaked raisins in my apple pie sometimes. They sounds like they'd be delicious in rice pudding too! Yum!

  9. You had me at bourbon soaked raisins...!


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