If there is one thing that I must have on my plate at some point during Christmas it’s arroz con dulce. Which basically translates to rice candy. It’s a sticky sweet coconut rice treat with cinnamon and raisins tossed in. Its delicious, its sweet , it’s sticky and for me it is Christmas.
I have fond memories of making this treat with my mother. The smell of coconut and cinnamon would fill the air and it smelled like Christmas. When she would pour it into the pan to cool, I would sneak in and steal some when she wasn’t looking. It was easy to hide the hole went it was still warm, a little more difficult once it cooled. My favorite was to fish the raisins out and lick the cinnamon sticks. I know that may sound odd but I am who I am….odd.
This dessert does require a bit of planning ahead. First rinse the rice and soak in a generous amount of water for two hours.
Twenty minutes before rice is finished soaking combine the 4½ cups of coconut milk, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg in a medium size nonstick pot. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to moderate, cover and boil for 15 minutes, letting the spices steep in the coconut milk.
Drain rice thoroughly and add to pot.
Mix and bring to a boil over moderate heat.
Reduce heat to low and cook unitl rice is completely dry, without stirring.
Add the sugar and raisins, stir, and bring to a boil over moderate heat.
Reduce heat to low and cook for another 15 minutes, without stirring.
Add reserved 3/4 cup coconut milk and stir.
Turn heat to moderate and boil for about 20 minutes, or until rice dries again. In this cooking period, turn rice over occasionally and scrape bottom of pot.
You can serve yourself a bit at this point. Traditionally it is served cold, but it can be a treat served warm too.
Remove spices. Spoon rice into a flat serving platter. Allow to cool at room temperature.
I can’t even begin to express how much I love this stuff. How I waited with anticipation every time my mother prepared it for whatever holiday event we were attending.
Once it’s cooled in the pan it will firm. You can either cut it out and serve in squares or scoop out. Either way it’s stinking delicious creamy, sticky, goodness.
If you want to try something different or traditional, depending on who you are, you will love this one.
Now if you don’t mind it’s 11 pm and I have a full tray in the fridge that calls for my attention.
I have to get it out of the house before I meat my total demise. It will be making an appearance at the husband’s office mañana.