June 21, 2010

{Recipe: Arroz con Leche}

For Father's day my father-in-law requested my arroz con leche. So Arroz con Leche I made. It's a Mexican rice pudding, although I don't really know where it originated from. I know a lot of Latin countries make their own version of it. It'll fill your home with the lovely scent of cinnamon and vanilla. If you've never had this before, you're going to love it especially because it's easy to make too. You can have it hot or cold, either way is delicious. Here's my easy recipe for it. 

You'll need:
7 c. water (5 c. for thicker consistency)
2 c. long-grain rice
2 c. whole or low-fat milk
1- 14oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
1- 12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 Tblsp pure vanilla extract
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise -scraped
2 canela sticks (cinnamon sticks) or 1 tbl. ground cinnamon (or both if you love cinnamon like me)
3 cloves or a small pinch of ground cloves
1/2 c. raisins (optional) 
Cinnamon and sugar and/or nutmeg for dusting

-Put water and rice in a heavy saucepan (if using whole cloves and cinnamon sticks, add now) bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium. Cook for about 10-12 minutes, stirring constantly, or until most of the water has evaporated and it's slightly thickened. 

-Add all of the milks, stirring constantly. Add the rest of the ingredients, including raisins (if using). 
*When using ground cinnamon add it slowly while stirring to avoid clumps.

-Keep at medium heat and cook for another 20 minutes or until rice is tender and desired consistency is achieved. Remove from heat to cool at room temperature, then if desired, put in fridge to cool the rest of the way. 
*The most important step is to stir constantly to avoid scorching!

*The rice pudding will set as it cools, it will get thicker. Remove cinnamon sticks and cloves before serving. I like to serve with a light dusting of cinnamon and sugar and/or nutmeg.

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