Welcome, once again, to my Danish Christmas Advent Calendar! Every day I’ll be giving you a little peak into how our family celebrates Christmas here in Copenhagen. Do the Danes love Christmas? Um, yes – they even use the word Christmas as a verb… Vi juler! (We are ‘christmasing’!)
So get comfy, put your feet up, grab a cup of something warm, and prepare for an avalanche of hygge!
22 December 2015
A few days ago I told you that I had been buying some marcipan pigs which will be our mandelgave– the prize for finding the whole almond in the pudding at Christmas dinner on 24 December. So today we have the pudding itself – ris à l’amande!
And here comes the recipe! In my DDH’s family (Dear Danish Husband), they always cook the basic rice pudding on 23 December and finish it off on the 24 December. Gives it a good taste and – more importantly – it’s nice to get half of the prep done early… This recipe feeds 8 people – enough for us. If you only want a small portion, half the quantities…
DAY ONE (23 DECEMBER)
Put 2½dl (250mls) of water and 2½ dl (250mls or 200g) of rice (short-grain, pudding,grødris) in a very large pot, bring to the boil and let it cook for 2 minutes.
Slowly add 1 litre of milk (sødmælk, wholemilk is best) and bring to the boil, stirring constantly. When it boils, turn the heat right down, pop a lid on it and let it simmer for about 30 minutes. Check on it every 10 minutes or so, giving it a good stir. If you want to do things the old-fashioned way, you can take it off the heat after about 15 minutes and let it continue to cook, wrapped in a duvet on your bed 8)
Leave it to cool in a cool place – preferably overnight.
DAY TWO (24 DECEMBER)
Give the cold rice pudding a good stir. Add two large tablespoons of sugar (melis/sukker) and about 4 teaspoons of vanilla sugar (vanilje sukker). Give it a taste, and check to see that it is sweet enough for you. Then add 100g of chopped almonds (hakkede mandler). Give it another good stir. Beat 4dls (400ml) of whipping cream (piskefløde) until you get soft peaks and stir into the rice pudding. At this point you’ll want to transfer it into a nice bowl, cover and keep cool until serving time.
HERE COMES THE SCIENCE BIT!
Just before serving, add one whole, blanched almond (mandel). Easiest way to remove the skin is to put the almond in a bowl of boiled water, let it sit for a minute, then the skin should squish right off. A word of warning, sometimes the almonds break up when you remove the skin. Make sure you have three or four almonds, so you end up with at least one whole one… Add to the pudding, give it a good mix and take it to table. Everyone gets a portion of the cold rice pudding, along with some hot, cherry sauce (kirsebærsauce). Yum! And now? Let the hunt for the whole almond begin!
Who’s going to win this year? May the best man win (the marcipan pig)!
See you tomorrow!