Rice pudding has long been known as a comfort food. It’s creamy, sweet, and luscious and can be eaten either hot or cold. It’s the perfect accompaniment to make ahead for your guests.
On our recent trip to Charleston SC, we learned of a rice that was first grown in the rice fields of South Carolina. It’s known as Carolina Gold. I had heard of it before but had never tried it. Legend has it that it is the BEST rice ever! While shopping in the Charleston City Market, I found some! Of course, I had to buy it and try it out. It really is as good as they say it is. It’s the rice I used for this recipe but any rice will work.
1 cup rice
2 cups coconut water
(You need 2 cups cooked rice. Follow the instructions for your rice of choice but substitute coconut water for regular water for a more flavorful rice pudding)
2 1/2 cups milk, divided
1/3 cup sugar
1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs, beaten
nutmeg, freshly ground
Bring the coconut water to a boil, add rice and cinnamon stick. Return to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 15 minutes (or as package directs). Remove from heat, take out the cinnamon stick, and fluff with a fork.
Add 2 cups milk, the sugar and a pinch of salt. Over medium heat, stirring frequently to prevent sticking, cook for 10-15 minutes until it reaches a creamy consistency.
Add 1/2 cup milk and the beaten eggs. Cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until fully incorporated. Remove from heat and add the butter and vanilla. Stir well.
Serve with a sprinkling of nutmeg on top. You could sprinkle with cinnamon if you prefer.