Friday, November 10, 2006

Just can’t stop

Before Sunday my entire thoughts were occupied with how to improve my cake recipe, but when it’s finalized at last there’s suddenly nothing to do. Jason’s leaving also left an empty feeling, even though I knew I’d see him again in less two weeks in Singapore. So when I got home after seeing him off in Tokyo station, I felt like I had to do something to occupy myself, like cooking something, anything.

The only thing in the fridge that can be used conceivably for dessert is a carton of almost expired milk. Not even an egg left after the weekend cake project. What could I make with just milk? Then it hit me. Rice! Every household in Japan has rice! So rice pudding is the natural thing to do. I also remembered the yummy fig mousse cake Jason and I had over the weekend and I happened to have bought some dried figs and was getting a little tired of eating them as is. I think the cake we had was made with port-poached figs, but my roommate has two bottles of un-finished red wine sitting there waiting to get spoiled. Red wine plus sugar equals port, right? Well, sort of, anyway, so I used that.

The end result is a creamy rice pudding topped with red wine poached figs.

Rice pudding:
500ml full-fat milk
¼ rice
sugar to taste
nutmeg, cinnamon to taste

- bring milk to a boil and add rice and all the other ingredients
- keep on simmering and stirring until rice is soft
- stop cooking when it’s still a little runny (will thicken)
- store in fridge overnight

Red wine poached figs:
Dry figs
Red wine

- place dry figs into saucepan until bottom is ¾ covered (leave space for figs to expand)
- Pour enough wine over fig to cover
- Add sugar
- Bring to a boil and then turn down heat to simmer
- Make a paper lid with parchment paper and place directly on figs
- Keep on simmering, adding more wine as needed so it doesn’t dry out, until figs are soft

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