Is it just me, or do Chinese takeout restaurants always seem to give you more rice than you can eat with your General Tso’s chicken? Sure, a little rice is a great way to soak up the sauce from your beef and broccoli, but an entire container leaves me with the dilemma of how to use up the leftovers long after the stir fry is gone. Fried rice or rice with black beans are always great options, but I like to use the leftover rice as an excuse to treat myself to a little dessert. This rice pudding is rich and creamy, without a drop of milk. If you are short on bananas, you can substitute a quarter cup of milk for the 3rd banana, but you do lose some of the rich banana flavor.
The trick to this pudding is in using previously frozen bananas. No matter how hard I try, I always have one or two bananas that become over-ripe before I can eat them so I simply toss them into the freezer, peel and all. When a recipe, such as banana bread, calls for mashed bananas, I let them defrost for about 20 minutes on a plate, use kitchen shears to snip off one end, and squeeze the banana into the mixing bowl. The bananas are very mushy and easy to mix into whatever you are making. You will get the same effect even if your bananas are under-ripe or perfectly ripe when you toss them in the freezer – just leave them in the freezer overnight to freeze solid before using.
Banana Raisin Rice Pudding
2 cups cooked rice
3 defrosted large bananas
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 cup raisins (optional but highly recomended)
1) Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease 5 small ramekins or 1 medium oven-safe casserole dish.
2) Cover raisins with hot tap water for 5 minutes. Drain well.
3) Mix all ingredients together.
4) Divide pudding evenly between individual ramekins or pour into casserole dish.