Rice is one of those ingredients that allow people to create delightful dishes. This grain’s versatility and blank flavor are the base for endless recipes: sugary, salty, beverages, desserts, you name it. Rice can easily adapt to any preparation you want to make.
Furthermore, rice is part of that exclusive group of food that is healthy for almost anyone. The benefits of including rice in your daily menu range from reducing the risk of being overweight, and consuming all nutrients and minerals your body needs, to prevent heart and digestive issues.
So, if you love to come up with new dishes with affordable yet nutritious ingredients, rice is your best choice. Do not limit yourself to typical savory meals, dare to make delicious sugary dishes, and even healthy puddings with this humble grain.
Learning about rice desserts
Cakes, pies, cookies, porridges, puddings, ice creams, and fritters can all be made with rice as the main ingredient. As surprising as it looks, rice has a mild flavor that makes it possible to combine with any sweet ingredient, like fruits, to create mouthwatering dishes.
The most popular rice desserts around the world are:
- Arancini: An Italian fried rice ball stuffed with jam or fruit marmalade. It is served with fruit syrup on the top.
- Mochis: A Japanese round rice cake with a sweet filler called anko, made of red beans and sugar.
- Nian Gao: It is a steamed rice cake made in China. It has glutinous rice flour and brown sugar.
- Calas: Rice fritters from New Orleans. The ingredients of this street dessert are cooked rice, sugar, flour, and spices.
- Kheer: A type of rice pudding created in India. This version has rice, whole milk, sugar, and cardamom.
Perhaps the most popular
The list of rice desserts is enormous. Every country has a specialty dessert made of rice. One of those that has several variations is rice pudding.
The base of this sugary dish is the same everywhere: rice, milk, sugar, and some flavorings. The differences are in the type of sweeter and flavorings added that respond to local ingredients in each country.
In Latin American countries it is called Arroz con Leche. It consists of rice cooked in sweetened whole milk, flavored with cinnamon, lemon zest, or vanilla extract. It is usually served with ground cinnamon on the top.
In India, Kheer is a rice pudding that has the same base of rice, sugar, and milk, but is flavored with cardamom and served with almonds and toasted pistachios.
In Sweden, the Risgrynsgröt rice pudding is baked with milk, butter, sugar, toasted almonds, and ground cinnamon. It is a typical dessert at Christmas time.
Sher Berinj is an Afghan rice pudding made of rice, milk, sugar, golden raisins and flavored with rose water, cardamom, and cinnamon.
As you can see, there exist thousands of types of rice pudding, but the good news is that it allows for making some changes to the base components. The recipe for rice pudding has the advantage of being adaptable to your taste and preferred cooking technique.
So, for quicker preparation, you can use cooked rice or leftover rice. For a healthier variation, you may use low-fat milk, almonds milk, or coconut milk. Moreover, honey, syrup or maple sugar can be used as sweeteners.
The options are countless. To begin with an exquisite dessert, let’s try this easy and healthy rice pudding and taste the wonders of rice.
Healthy rice pudding
Ingredients (5 servings)
- 1 cup of white rice.
- 2½ cups of low-fat milk.
- 1 cup of additional low-fat milk.
- ½ cup of honey.
- ½ teaspoon of cinnamon.
- ½ teaspoon of salt.
- 1½ teaspoon of vanilla extract.
- ½ cup of raisins.
- In a saucepan, pour 2½ cups of low-fat milk, and cook at medium heat.
- When milk is warm, add rice and simmer until the milk thickens.
- Incorporate the additional low-fat milk, honey, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla extract.
- Bring this mixture to a boil. When rice is tender, remove from the heat and let it rest for about 20 minutes.
- Add the raisins and stir very well.
- Serve hot or refrigerate until it is cold. Add more raisins and ground cinnamon.
Hints on nutritional values:
- Calories: 160.
- Fat: 0.7 g.
- Cholesterol: 0 mg.
- Sodium: 95 mg.
- Carbohydrates: 37.4 g.
- Fiber: 1.7 g.
- Sugar: 12.2 g.
- Protein: 2.3 g.