Amanda & Merrill

Amanda and Merrill's Rice Pudding Video

January  1, 2010

Joel returns as guest director of this week's special video! Watch as Amanda and Merrill go head-to-head in an action-packed rice pudding showdown. Then help determine whose pudding will emerge victorious!

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A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

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Food52 (we cook 52 weeks a year, get it?) is a food and home brand, here to help you eat thoughtfully and live joyfully.


gasgirl September 30, 2012
Thanks.. this is terrific recipe! But as good as this is, I miss the rice pudding made by Horn And Hardants...does anyone have the recipe? have never been able to reproduce and would love a taste from my youth!
susanbar January 4, 2010
meringue on top of rice pudding....BRILLIANT!
coffeefoodwrite January 3, 2010
Merrill, LOVE your whisk...Brown butter....mmmm.....always gotta go with the butter....
Merrill S. January 3, 2010
It's actually Amanda's whisk -- but thanks!
AntoniaJames January 6, 2010
What makes that whisk special? Do you recommend it for particular tasks? Thanks!
Oui, C. January 3, 2010
A tough call to be sure. Both puddings sound perfectly delectable, and while I prefer Merrill's idea of using a short-grained rice, Amanda will be getting my vote here. Her choice to whisk the meringue by hand was almost enough in itself to earn my vote (way to go), but ultimately her choice of an almond/lemon/cinnamon flavor profile, along with her light and beautiful meringue topping sealed the deal for me. YUM. Congratulations to you both for crafting two such delicious sounding recipes!
Tracy F. January 3, 2010
Oh my! How can one choose? Both great recipes with superb qualities. I will have to make them both.
I have a recipe I always use so these will be going a bit outside the box for me. I am not a fan of meringue but I see how wonderfully it partners with the rice pudding and I LOVE lemon in every dessert :) The idea of caramelizing the flavor of the other recipe with the burnt butter is music to my taste buds, so for me, I can not choose, you are both winners in my book!
AntoniaJames January 2, 2010
Amanda, a citrus reamer used to be my favorite squeezer of choice, until I picked up a heavy (almost clunky) lime juicer while on a surfing vacation in Sayulita, Mexico, just north of Puerta Vallarta. The limes there are larger, and almost exactly the size of my Meyer lemons. It works kind of like a garlic press. I tend to wait until my lemons are dead ripe, off the tree, at which point their skins are so thin and fragile that the lemon falls apart in my hands when I use a reamer. What I like about the press is that I can fold over the soft Meyer skin and squeeze it a second time, to get every last bit of juice out . . . . .
Amanda H. January 3, 2010
I have one of those (it's bright yellow!) stuffed in a drawer -- will bring it out for a future slideshow or video!
Merrill S. January 7, 2010
Stay tuned, everyone...The yellow citrus reamer will be making an appearance today in one of the slideshows!
Rhonda35 January 2, 2010
Love the video, love you gals, love rice pudding...sorry, you, but I can't say no to meringue! (I like the part of the video where Amanda starts whistling.)
Merrill S. January 3, 2010
No offense taken. If my sister didn't vote for my rice pudding recipe, I'd be a bit ticked off!
mrslarkin January 2, 2010
Great video Joel. Watching both puddings got me thinking..what about a rice pudding creme brulee?
pierino January 2, 2010
I was considering that very thing myself. My first test taught me something. I topped the ramikins with toasted, sliced almonds. I topped one "stunt" ramikin with sugar and applied the blow torch. The almonds began to burn well ahead of the sugar caramelizing. Dropped that idea. Possibly caramelize the sugar first and then top with almonds
lastnightsdinner January 1, 2010
This video is great, and while I can't say I've ever been much of a fan of rice pudding, both of your versions look very appealing.
Amanda H. January 2, 2010
Michael.Alcamo January 1, 2010
Looks great, of course. May I offer "Number One Lucky Rice Pudding." Guys make this a lot. Start with the rice you didn't eat with the Chinese food. Warm this with milk and a little half-and-half. Add your sugar and vanilla to taste. (Put a vanilla bean in and take it out if there is someone you want to impress). Slowly add two eggs (which have been lightly mixed separately). After a minute, it will custardize nicely. Add raisins, if you like raisins. Cool and eat. So good. m
Merrill S. January 3, 2010
So essentially a Bachelor's Rice Pudding, no?
Tracy F. January 3, 2010
Hee, hee, funny, I have some take out rice leftover from last night and I said to my hubby after dinner I was going to use this very same recipe for it. My recipe is called Italian Rice Pudding, though I think Bachelor Style is more appropriate,LOL! I only use this one when I have leftover rice, otherwise I prefer the traditional way, having the rice cook in the milk and vanilla ;)
Michael.Alcamo January 3, 2010
Tracy, it's funny you mentioned that -- since it was my grandfather's recipe, it probably is what the rest of the world views as "Italian Style"! I tend to name it after the Chinese restaurant that supplied the rice.
AntoniaJames January 3, 2010
I love that sticky white rice that only the restaurants seem able to make so perfectly . . . . I've been known to get carryout of a large box of rice from our local Chinese place, just for this purpose, using almost precisely this recipe! Their brown rice -- in this neighborhood, it's practically against the law NOT to offer brown rice -- works nicely, too. (The people in the restaurant look at me like I'm a bit crazy, by the way, ;o) )
Michael.Alcamo January 3, 2010
aha! That's an excellent idea. I didn't even know you could buy a single portion of white rice. You're inspiring me think I could ask the guys at No. 1 Lucky C.R. to sell me some uncooked rice, so I can work it up myself in the rice cooker. best, m
AntoniaJames January 3, 2010
Actually, I buy the rice already cooked. I live close enough to two different, large Chinatowns so that if I really wanted to, I could probably find exactly the rice that they use in the restaurants. But I just go into the restaurant and ask for "steamed rice for four;" within about a minute, I've divested myself of about three bucks and they've given me the rice, and I'm on my way.
PaulaK January 1, 2010
Both rice pudding recipes look superb.
Amanda H. January 2, 2010
Thank you -- it's nerve-wracking to compete against each other!
pierino January 1, 2010
I had to try a rice pudding on New Year's Eve to satisfy one of 2009's resolution. Never made one, and it scared the hell out of me because it had to be the finish to a celebratory meal. What I came up with was closer to Merrill's I used short grain rice, gave it a Spanish/Basque touch with dried cherries, almond extract and toasted almonds. I was scared as hell that the custard wouldn't set but thankfully it did. I finished the puddings in individual ramikins in bane marie in the oven (because the hostess preferred warm), meanwhile toasting sliced almonds to top. I'm now absorbing all the things that you two did, so that next time mine will be even better. Thank you.
Amanda H. January 2, 2010
Glad it all worked out well. The starch in rice really helps the pudding set -- even mine, which is very milky and loose when it's first done, firms up after a day in the fridge.
Merrill S. January 3, 2010
That sounds like a great first attempt! Bravo.
pierino January 3, 2010
and now I have to repent for misspelling bain marie to prove that I'm not a total retard. The curse of spell check. But yeah, my New Year's Revolutions are complete now.