Preview of Next Week's Special Theme

December 18, 2009

On Friday we usually give you a head-start by previewing next week's contest themes, but this week is a little different. Since we figured everyone is especially busy cooking for friends and family (as we are), we thought we'd give you a break from submitting and instead have a face-off between the two of us. Next week, we'll submit our best recipes for Rice Pudding, and the following week you'll vote on which you like better. Of course, if you'd like to add your favorite rice pudding recipes to the site over the coming week, that would be great -- we'll still post Editors' Picks.

Happy Holidays, everyone!

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- Amanda & Merrill

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Lizthechef
  • Maria Teresa Jorge
    Maria Teresa Jorge
  • pauljoseph
  • mrslarkin
  • Veronica
Food52 (we cook 52 weeks a year, get it?) is a food and home brand, here to help you eat thoughtfully and live joyfully.


Lizthechef December 22, 2009
Just when I thought I was burned out, you guys tempt me yet again...Fun. Nice to feel a kinship with so many folks so far apart - thanks food52 and happy 2010...
Amanda H. December 24, 2009
Thank you, Liz -- we agree! And best wishes for 2010!
Maria T. December 22, 2009
Dear Amanda and Merrill, maybe when you thought we needed a break you were thinking along the lines "we need a break from all these foodie nutcases...". Well it seems you ain't getting no rest girls! Ithink we are all anxious to get rice pudding recipes in food52, I bet you it'll be a storm of rice pudding falling on your Xmas tree! This just proves how many fan, fodie lovers and anxious winners follow Amanda and Merrill and Food52. So Congratulations, I think I can speak for many of us WE LOVE FOOD 52. Have a very Merry Christmas with your own families and turn off from us. We can manage.
To all the community, my best wishes for a Merry Christmas and bring on wonderful recipes in 2010. Warm wishes
shayma December 22, 2009
so beautifully put. we do love the Food52 community. wishing all of you a lovely winter holiday (buon natale to those who celebrate christmas) and a happy new year. with warmth, s
pierino December 22, 2009
Amen to that sentiment my friend Mother Teresa;-) Thanks to food52 I've made new friends in the food world. I was led here by one of my other food writer friends who happened to be a judge in the Piglet awards. I'll spare her identity because I disagreed with her decision. So, best of holidays to all!
Amanda H. December 24, 2009
Really great to hear your thoughts! We've had so much fun getting to know all of you this year -- have a happy holiday!
Merrill S. December 26, 2009
Thank you, everyone, for your kind words about food52. As Amanda wrote, we've had such a great time being part of this new community -- it's far exceeded even our highest hopes. Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday, and looking forward to more fun and great food in 2010!
pauljoseph December 21, 2009
history of PUDDING
pierino December 21, 2009
As an obsessive I appreciate the reference to Davidson's OXFORD COMPANION TO FOOD, which is truly my own companion. I'm surprised that Clifford Wright's otherwise exhaustive MEDITTERANEAN FEAST makes no mention given that so many historical paths converge on this simple dish.
Maria T. December 22, 2009
Thanks for the thread.
pauljoseph December 21, 2009
history of rice pudding in this site
mrslarkin December 20, 2009
Sampled a delicious rice pudding last week at my husband's office holiday party. It had strips of candied lemon peel in the pudding. Delicious! Will try to get the recipe.
Amanda H. December 21, 2009
Please do -- that sounds great.
Merrill S. December 21, 2009
mrslarkin December 22, 2009
I got it! Will post later. have to go shopping with mom today! Question: can rice pudding be made in a rice cooker?? I wonder.... Or a crock pot???
Merrill S. December 26, 2009
Interesting question. I have a feeling a crock pot might turn the rice to mush, and perhaps the same would be true of a rice cooker. But I could easily be wrong!
Veronica December 20, 2009
A great idea and "thank you" to Maria Teresa Jorge for the history. Explains why EVERYONE loves Rice pud!
Marla December 20, 2009
Love Rice Pudding!! There are sooooo many ways to make this. We will be traveling for a few weeks. I might submit, but it will be difficult. I am glad u guys are taking the heat off us for the holidays. I can't wait to see what you come up with!
shayma December 20, 2009
i do hope that the rice puds' are done collectively- how difficult would it be for us to choose an amanda vs. merrill recipe? ;-)
Amanda H. December 21, 2009
Don't worry, we can't see your votes!
Maria T. December 20, 2009
Hi Pierino, thanks for the information. I decided to check on the history of Rice pudding and I was perplexed to find out that Rice Pudding exists as a dessert all over the world, with different spices, flavourings and sweeteners.
For anyone interested in it’s origins, here it is:
Rice has been cultivated in Asia for over 10,000 years. In Europe, rice was only known after Alexandre the Great’s expedition to India in 337 B.C.. The Arabs brought rice to the Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal) when they conquered it in 711. In the middle of the 15th Century it was introduced in Italy, then France and the rest of Europe followed. In 1694 it was introduced in South Carolina and in the beginning of the 18th Century to South America.
Nowadays Italy and Spain are the biggest European rice consumers, followed by Greece, Portugal and Spain.
Originally Rice Pudding was made in Asia and used to aid the malnourished. For the West, rice pudding originated in the Arab Countries or Persia. The dessert gained popularity during the Middle Ages.
In the United States, most recipes have descended from European immigrants. The pudding is usually partially cooked on top of the stove in a double boiler, and then "finished" in an oven. The most popular pudding is made with long grain rice, milk, sugar, or in Vermont, maple syrup. This is combined with nutmeg, cinnamon, and raisins.
pierino December 20, 2009
thank you for that precis. I have a personal fascination (obession) with food history. I think to be a good cook you have to completely understand your ingredients and how they intersect. Chefs don't "create" anything. It's all been done before---unless your name is Ferran Adria.
Maria T. December 20, 2009
Yeah, noone creates, we all transform, even Ferran Adria!
pierino December 20, 2009
I think when I do submit my own I will follow Maria Teresa's example and attempt something Iberian. I think the possiblities are richer. Also I like her contributions.
Amanda H. December 21, 2009
Thanks Maria Teresa -- really nice of you to add this info.
pauljoseph December 19, 2009
amanda we have some excellent recipes (South Indian) for rice pudding will post
Amanda H. December 20, 2009
Oh good! Sounds great.
Rhonda35 December 19, 2009
Yum! Just watched the video and both puddings look/sound delicious. Hard to decide...!
Amanda H. December 19, 2009
Ack! You weren't supposed to see that video yet. Still not finished!
SallyM December 19, 2009
Rice pudding sounds great, but I'd like to see what cookies you two bake during the holidays...Thanks, Sally
Amanda H. December 19, 2009
Sally, I do have a few holiday cookie recipes -- variations of some of the cookies that other food52ers make (i.e. the snowballs) -- but we also have a few cookie recipes (from the early days at food52) that we're going to reveal next week.
Maria T. December 19, 2009
Great idea, I am very curious to know how you make rice pudding. I seem to get lost in American cuisine which I had never thought would be so different from European!? I will post my rice pudding that I already have in my recipes for you to see how we make it in Portugal - it's a very traditional dessert for us. Have a great week.
Amanda H. December 19, 2009
We look forward to seeing your recipe -- and hopefully some others, too!
pierino December 19, 2009
Hopefully I'll be able to step up on this myself. The rice pudding idea appears (historically) to be of Arabic orgin, so it seems to have spread by way of the Iberian peninsula. So Portugal doesn't surprise me. The moorish occupation introduced rice to Spain. But they also make rice "puddings" in Sicily---same reasons.