Rice pudding with tea-soaked dates and mandarins

by Sophia Young
Rice pudding with tea-soaked dates and mandarins


40g unsalted butter
200g (1 cup) arborio rice
2 strips lemon zest
1.25L milk
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
75g (1/3 cup) caster sugar
4 egg yolks
Fresh nutmeg, to serve
Sweet biscuits, to serve

9 fresh dates
1 English breakfast tea bag
3 mandarins
110g (1/2 cup) caster sugar


1. To make rice pudding, melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add rice, stir to coat, then add zest and 375ml (1 1/2 cups) milk. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes or until most of milk is absorbed. Meanwhile, place remaining 875ml (3 1/2 cups) milk in a saucepan and bring almost to the boil over low–medium heat. Once rice has absorbed milk, add hot milk with vanilla and cook, stirring occasionally, for a further 10 minutes or until rice is tender. 2. Meanwhile, to make tea-soaked dates, halve and pit dates, then place in a heatproof bowl with tea bag. Pour over 250ml (1 cup) boiling water and leave to steep for 5 minutes. Discard tea bag. Strain liquid into a saucepan. Grate zest and squeeze over juice of 1 mandarin. Add sugar and simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes or until syrup thickens. Segment remaining 2 mandarins and remove pits. Add to syrup with dates and turn to coat, then set aside. 3. Whisk sugar and egg yolks in a bowl until combined. Add a ladle of rice mixture, stir to combine, then stir egg mixture into rice mixture. Stir for 5 minutes or until mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Do not allow to boil. 4. Spoon rice pudding among bowls, then top with tea-soaked dates and mandarins, and a little syrup. Grate over nutmeg and serve with sweet biscuits.

Recipe by Sophia Young.

One of the great joys each week is opening up my Free Co. box and discovering what they have sent me. I can then plan my meals around the veg and challenge myself with new recipes and ideas. I'm also supporting a truly sustainable business.

— Hannah

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