Looking for a lighter dessert that will still satisfy your sweet tooth? Here’s a recipe for a light rice pudding you’ll love. Even though there are no eggs or butter included, the evaporated skim milk keeps the rice nice and creamy. A little bit of brown sugar keeps the dessert sweet while plump yellow raisins and dried cherries add fantastic texture. Serve with just a dash of cinnamon or nutmeg and a drizzle of honey and you have a comforting, healthy dessert that’s perfect for a crisp fall day.
- 1 cup rice (for best results, use short grain or medium grain rice–long grain rice will not work)
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1 (12 ounce) can evaporated skim milk
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
- 1/2 cup milk (I like to use soy milk to add a bit of nuttiness, but you can choose your type of milk depending on how “Light” you want your rice pudding to be.)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 cup dried cherries
- 1/2 cup of yellow raisins
- a drizzle of honey, to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon (or nutmeg, if you prefer), to taste
- Add 1/4 teaspoon of salt to 2 cups of water and bring it to a boil. Add rice and cook until tender, stirring frequently. When the rice is cooked all the water should be absorbed.
- Add the evaporated milk, orange zest, and brown sugar to the pot of cooked rice; cover and cook for 10 minutes.
- Uncover and cook, stirring frequently, for another 10 minutes or until the rice is very creamy and most of the liquid has been absorbed.
- Stir in the milk, vanilla and almond extracts and remove the rice from heat.
- While the rice is cooling to room temperature, boil an extra 1/4 cup of water and pour it into a mug. Add the yellow raisins to the water and stir, then let them sit for 5-10 minutes. This will plump up the raisins and bring out their sweetness.
- When the rice is at room temperature, stir in the dried cherries and the plumped up raisins and refrigerate for 2 hours or until chilled.
- When you serve up your rice pudding, add a dash of cinnamon or nutmeg to each serving and drizzle with honey for a great presentation.
Note: Yellow raisins are my favorite, but one of the best things about this dessert is that you can get creative and customize the “add-ins.” Try shredded coconut and pineapple, or go for fresh strawberries and blueberries. You could also toast some almond slices and sprinkle them on top. Once I tried adding a spoonful of fresh pomegranate seeds–the pop of juice against the creamy rice made a great flavor/texture combination.