It goes without saying that fudge is delicious just eaten as it is. However if you are up for a bit of fudgy culinary experimenting then you’ve reached the right place. I shall be making regular posts here as I share with you some of my favourite dishes and foody things that you can do with fudge. Some of them are all time classics in our household and others I’m just interested in trialing myself.
Our family is quite a big one, we’ve two adults and five children living at home with us, two of which are hungry teens so the portions are made with this in mind. You can halve the ingredient amounts and adjust to suit your requirements.
So on that note, first up on our family favourites is the humble baked rice pudding.
We often eat this as a feel good winter warmer, warm and creamy with a vanilla pod, bay leaves and 3 or 4 chunky cubes of nutmeg and cardamom fudge by the little fudge box which you can find (along with lots of other fudgy gifts) at The Little Fudge Box or here, on Etsy. Divine!
But don’t forget that this rice pudd makes a great dessert in the warmer months too where it can be chilled down and eaten cold.
You’re going to need a large oven proof dish for this one.
250g pudding rice
150g caster sugar
3 1/2 (2000ml) pints full fat milk
300ml double cream
1 vanilla pod, split lengthways
3 bay leaves
3 or 4 cubes of nutmeg and cardamom fudge.
optional-freshly grated nutmeg.
Preheat oven to 140c, 285f, gas 1. Melt the butter in a heavy based oven proof dish. (I use a round casserole dish so that I can also part cook on the hob to lessen the oven baking time)
Add rice and stir into melted butter, then add the sugar too until it’s dissolved.
Keep stirring for a few minutes until you see the rice becomes much fuller, a bit stickier and swollen.
Next pour in the milk and cream. Keep stirring so there are no lumps.
Add the split vanilla pods, (I split them then scrape out their contents but you can put the split pods in whole then remove later if preferred)
Add the bay leaves too (these are always fun to find in the pudding later)
Roughly chop up and crush the nutmeg and cardamom fudge then add to the pot.
Give everything a thorough stir and keep stirring so that the fudge pieces melt and get nicely mixed in.
Keep going until the mixture bubbles and simmers.
At this point you can pop the pudding straight into the oven and bake for a good 2-3 hours. I’d put a lid on for the first hour to prevent burning the surface of the pudding.
It’s ready when it wobbles a little bit in the centre. You want it jelly wobbly rather than runny wobbly.
Or, if you can’t wait that long (like me) and need your pudd cooking faster, keep it simmering for about twenty minutes to half an hour or so until the rice swells and thickens. You will see the rice become more visible and obvious as it swells and the mixture becomes thicker. The longer you cook it on the hob the less time it will need baking in the oven.
At this point if you’d like a little more nutmeg you can grate some fresh and sprinkle onto the surface of the pudding.
Next, into the oven for about 45-60 minutes. You shouldn’t need to put a lid on and it’s ready when it wobbles slightly in the middle and has a lovely brown top.