Citrus-Lemon Grass Rice Pudding
Creamy and delicately perfumed, this version of rice pudding provides a cool lift at the end of a meal.
You'll need a 5- or 6-quart slow-cooker. If you don’t have cheesecloth, use a rolling pin to smash the lemon grass, then tie it together with clean kitchen twine.
5 inches lemon grass, smashed, then finely chopped
3 cups low-fat (2 percent) milk
31/2 cups canned, well-shaken coconut milk (two 13.5-ounce cans; do not use low-fat)
11/2 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
11/2 cups uncooked medium-grain white rice, preferably arborio, rinsed with cold water and drained well
11/2 tablespoons finely grated zest from a mixture of lemon, lime and orange, plus optional zest for garnish
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
Use cooking oil spray to grease the inside/insert of the slow-cooker.
Wrap up and tie the lemon grass in a piece of cheesecloth (for infusing). Place it in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, along with the milk, coconut milk, sugar and salt, over medium heat. Once the mixture is hot but not boiling, pour it into the slow-cooker (including the lemon grass sachet).
Stir in the rice. Cover and cook on LOW for 2 hours; the mixture will be bubbling at the edges. Remove from the heat; discard the lemon grass sachet, then stir in the zest, the vanilla extract or paste and the cardamom.
Cool slightly, then divide among individual bowls. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled.
Discard the wrap; garnish with the optional zest, if desired. The pudding will thicken further as it cools. Makes 8 servings.
Source: Adapted from “Year-Round Slow Cooker: 100 Favorite Recipes for Every Season,” by Dina Cheney (Taunton, 2013).
Per serving: 520 calories, 8 g protein, 74 g carbohydrates, 23 g fat, 20 g saturated fat, 5 mg cholesterol, 180 mg sodium, 0 g dietary fiber, 38 g sugar