Less Calories, More Taste…..
Today is another cold windy day in tornado country. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we don’t have any power outages over the next couple of days. The only upside to cold, windy, nasty days is the fact that there is an excuse to turn on the oven and bake! No one is going to complain about coming in from being whipped in the face by freezing wind and being greeted with smells of warm vanilla. (Plus, having the oven on helps to heat up the house a little bit. 😉 ) When I woke up to the wind tearing through the trees this morning I knew what I had to make, so after I got done exercising I immediately got started on a batch of warming creamy vanilla rice pudding, one of my husband’s favorite desserts. (And if you want to dress it up a little, don’t think twice about putting a little bit of whipped cream and cinnamon on top.)
The upside of my rice pudding is it is safe to eat without feeling any regret. As kids we ate breakfast rice with milk, butter, and cinnamon sugar, and then my mom would make rice pudding with raisins, which I never really cared for, as a dessert. Of course her version was made with butter, whole milk, LOTS of sugar, vanilla, and of course rice. When I first started making rice pudding on my own I wasn’t really using a recipe, I was kind of flying blind. I started by using long grain rice because that is what I always had in the house for breakfast rice, or plain rice. While the custard part of the rice pudding turned out right, the rice was all wrong. It was just absolute MUSH! After a few tries I decided to do some rice research and found that long, medium, and short grain all cook differently. That is where my problem was, I needed to use MEDIUM grain rice. Once I started using medium grain rice I had a star dessert on my hands, but that wasn’t good enough. I wanted to lower the calories, but still keep it super creamy, so I started playing around with the milk. I used whole milk, I used 2%, I used a combination of whole milk and 2%, and I have ended on 1% milk. (You could use almond, but I don’t think you would get the desired custard effect because of the lack of fat. Some cornstarch would have to be incorporated.) It is just as creamy as whole milk, believe it or not, and it drastically lowered the calories. Then I thought while I was at it, why not take it one step further? I decided to go refined sugar-free, and that, with lots of vanilla flavoring, is what gave me the glorious dish that I am going to share with you today.
Over all I have lowered the fat content, the calorie count, and the sugar. This leaves you with a beautifully creamy dessert that is only 140 calories a serving! If you are even remotely concerned with the carbs, and starch, don’t be. Once starchy foods, like rice and potatoes, are cooked and cooled their starch is transformed into resistant starch which helps keep blood sugar levels even. I like my rice pudding fresh out of the oven, I don’t think it could taste any better than when it is still warm. My husband likes it best after it has been refrigerated, and he says that it even tastes just as good the second day. A few quick tips, first make sure you are using medium grain rice, second put your baking dish on a cookie sheet (I use a glass pie plate, but have also used 4 quart casserole dishes, cake pans, and silicone pans.), and third be careful of the steam when stirring the pudding every 20 minutes. Last, but not least, sit back, relax, and enjoy!
Creamy Vanilla Rice Pudding
By Angie Gouchenour
3 cups 1% milk (Or any milk of your choice)
½ cup MEDIUM grain rice
3 Tablespoons of Truvia zero calorie sweetener
3 teaspoons of vanilla flavoring or extract
Pre heat oven to 320’f
In a medium sauce pan combine milk, rice, and Truvia
Bring to a boil over medium to medium high heat stirring occasionally
Once the mixture comes to a boil pour into a baking dish of your choice (Make sure the baking dish is on a cookie sheet in case of spills.)
Cover with aluminum foil and place in the oven for 20 minutes
After 20 minutes stir and replace foil (I just pull the rack out and lift a corner and stir) bake another 20 minutes
Add vanilla and stir one last time
Replace foil and bake 20 more minutes
(TOTAL BAKING TIME 1 HOUR)
Remove from the oven and let cool (It will look soupy, but will firm up as it cools.)
Place in serving dishes
140 calories per serving