Approx cost: €0.50
Approx calories (per serving):
Approx preparation and cooking time: ~60 mins
Howdy folks – it’s Christmas eve, la la la! For many people that means one more day and then the full joy of Christmas is upon us. For other people though, Scandinavians for example, Christmas is today. They celebrate “Julafton” or “Christmas Eve” so many of the things I’ve been making the past few weeks would be gracing the tables of millions of Swedes today. As you may know, my wife is Swedish, and what, you may ask, is the impact of this on our annual Christmas celebrations? Well – I’ll reveal to you that I’m determined to cling to my traditions, and she’s equally determined to cling to hers. The idea of celebrating Christmas – with the epic turkey feast and everything – on the 24th is about as foreign to me as celebrating Christmas in June. As a result, we celebrate the Swedish Christmas on the 24th and the “British” one on the 25th. This does mean two huge meals, where others might have just one – hardly ideal for the waistline – but totally worth it!
Today I’ll be posting a traditional Swedish (well, I’m sure Norwegians/Danish have similar variants) rice porridge. The porridge is commonly eaten for either breakfast or as a starter to the Christmas dinner table. With a hint of cinnamon, this stuff is rich, creamy and delicious. The first time I tried it I found it rather curious, but it’s grown on me over time and Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a bowl of rice porridge now! Best of all, this stuff is outrageously cheap to make, so I feel very satisfied being able to plonk this into the <€1 food category on my site here.
Oh – want to hear something hilarious? Ok, it’s not hilarious at all, actually quite tragic. It’s Christmas and my wife and I have both got colds. Right at the beginning of our holidays too! How unfortunate is that? Anyway, I’ll be back tomorrow with a very quick “Merry Christmas” post, thus bringing an end to my “Christmas posting marathon” (a post every day for 7 days!). I’ll leave you today with a little picture of our tree, above, and wish my Scandinavian friends out there – and indeed anyone who celebrates Christmas on the 24th – a very merry Christmas. God Jul – Hoppas att ni har en trevlig dag!
- ~100g White Rice (usually round grain, but you can also use long grain, or indeed almost any rice you like)
- 5 decilitres Milk
- 3 decilitres Water
- 15g Butter
- Pinch of Salt
- 1 or 2 Sticks of Cinnamon
- Start off by placing the rice, butter, salt and water into a pan. Bring to the boil and then cover the pan, lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. If the hot-plate doesn’t cool down very fast you may want to consider switching to a different hot-plate for the simmering because you don’t want the rice to boil dry.
- After the 10 minutes have passed, remove the lid and pour in the milk. Add in the cinnamon stick(s) and give the rice mixture a good stir. Bring to the boil once again, being careful not to allow the milk to boil over, and then cover once again and place on a very low heat (again, maybe on a different hot-plate if the other is still hot!) for 40 – 60 minutes. Don’t stir during this time – it should be warm enough to “putter” very gently in the pan, but not so hot that the rice will burn or stick.
- After the pan of porridge has been on the stove for about 40 – 60 minutes, give it a stir. If it is still very liquid continue to heat it through on a low heat, covered, until the rice has swollen even more and absorbed up the milk mixture. When it’s creamy and thick serve immediately with a sprinkling of cinnamon and brown sugar and enjoy a great Swedish-inspired breakfast or snack!