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Milk Pudding

There's nothing nicer than a lovingly made milk pudding, use creamy, fresh milk though, and don't omit the butter or spice. Opt for rice, tapioca, sago or semolina, whichever yoi have. The method's easy for them all.

ingredients

50 g (2 oz) short-grain white or brown pudding rice, flaked rice or tapioca, or 40 g (1 1/2 oz) semolina or sago
568 - 900 ml (l - l 1/2 pints) fresh milk
30 ml (2 tbsp) sugar
15 g (1/2 oz) butter
1.25 ml (1/4 tsp) ground cinnamon, ground mixed spice or grated nutmeg

method

1. If using rice, flaked rice or tapioca, put it in a buttered 1.1 litre (2 pint) ovenproof serving dish. Pour in 568 ml (1 pint) milk. If using brown rice, add an extra 300 ml (1/2 pint) milk. Add the sugar and butter. Sprinkle top with cinnamon, mixed spice or nutmeg.

2. If using semolina or sago, heat the milk in a saucepan until lukewarm, then gradually sprinkle in the semolina or sago, stirring continuously. Add the sugar and butter and continue to cook for 10 minutes, until thickened, stirring frequently. Pour into a buttered 1.1 litre (2 pint) ovenproof serving dish and sprinkle the top with the cinnamon, mixed spice or nutmeg.

3. Bake the rice, flaked rice or tapioca pudding in the oven at 170°C (325°F) mark 3 for 2 - 2 1/2 hours (brown rice for an extra 30 minutes). Stir the pudding 2 or 3 times during the first hour, but leave for the remaining time to form a crust.

4. Bake the semolina or sago pudding at 180°C (350°F) mark 4 for 30 minutes, without stirring.

5. Serve milk puddings hot or cold, plain or topped with fresh fruit, chopped nuts, or thick natural yogurt.

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