AIMEE'S ARROZ CON LECHE

This version is just as delicious as a common, Southern version of Rice Pudding, but in a different way.  The texture, the flavors are so aromatic and truly lovely.  I have eaten Arroz con Leche in Miami, Peru and Mexico; each time loving the variations of basically rice, milk, sugar and cinnamon!

  • 4 cups whole milk
  • ½ cup short grain rice
  • 1 cinnamon stick or 1 teaspoon cinnamon 
  • Either 2 long peels from an orange, or the zest of one orange
  • dash of salt
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup raisins * optional

Combine the milk, rice, cinnamon, orange and salt in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil.  Turn the heat down to the lowest setting, and let it simmer for about 40 minutes, stirring often.  At this point, add the sugar, and if using raisins, add them now.  Stir and let this simmer for another 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often so your rice does not stick.  Remove your saucepan from the heat and add the butter and vanilla.  Taste and see if you need more cinnamon and sugar, and then you can serve hot or refrigerate and serve cold.