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Lebanese Rice Pudding with Cinnamon and Caraway

  • Active:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 8
  • Time(Other): plus overnight soaking and chilling

This pudding is made with finely milled rice flour, seasoned with cinnamon and caraway and garnished with walnuts, pine nuts and slivered almonds. Known as meghli, it is traditionally served at birthdays and holidays, including Christmas. Rita Nakouzi is eager to make it for her own children one day. "I've been attempting my family recipes more now that I'm pregnant," she says. "Because my kids will be born in America, and their dad's American, I think food will be a great way to teach them about Middle Eastern culture."

slideshow  More Middle Eastern Dishes

KEY: Winter, Entertaining, Christmas, Dinner Party, New Year's Eve, Middle Eastern, Desserts, Puddings & Custards, Gluten-Free, Make Ahead

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Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon caraway seeds
  • 9 cups water
  • 1 cup rice flour (see Note)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup walnut halves
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

How to make this recipe

  1. In a spice grinder, grind the caraway seeds to a coarse powder.
  2. Pour the water into a large saucepan. Whisk in the rice flour, sugar, ground caraway and cinnamon. Bring to a boil over moderate heat, whisking constantly. Reduce heat to moderately low and simmer, whisking often, until the pudding is very thick, about 1 hour and 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Meanwhile, place the walnuts, almonds and pine nuts in separate small bowls and cover with water. Let stand at room temperature overnight.
  4. To serve, spoon the pudding into bowls and sprinkle with the nuts. Dust with confectioners' sugar and serve.

Make Ahead

The pudding can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Notes

rice flour is made from milled white rice and has the fine texture of cornstarch. It is available at major supermarkets and online at kalustyans.com.

Contributed By Photo © Lucy Schaeffer Published December 2007

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