I went to sleep last night thinking about this cinnamon sticks I got a few days ago, thinking on a recipe to utilize them and of course arroz con leche (rice pudding) immediately popped into my mind. Arroz con leche means to me cozy, home, mom, warm, soothing and all of those things that make you go back in time and find that little kid in you. Just the smell of the cinnamon perfuming my whole house takes me back to those happy days. This recipe is my mom's. We made it together because her directions are a bit hard to follow: "a little bit of this, a pinch of that, stir it until you see it's right" ahhh the old school way, the best way.
I gave my son Lucas a little taste and he seemed to like it. Well, at least he didn't make that face he makes when he absolutely hates something. It makes me happy to think that I am building this memories for Lucas and hopefully one day he will say " smells like my mom's kitchen"
1 cup long-grain white rice (I like Basmati)
5 cups water
2 cinnamon stick
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
1 (14-ounce) can condensed milk
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup raisins
Ground cinnamon, for dusting
Put the water, rice, and cinnamon sticks in heavy saucepan set over medium heat. Bring to a boil, uncovered, and cook until the rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Strain out the liquid, discard the cinnamon sticks and return the rice to the saucepan. In another saucepan add whole milk, evaporated milk and condensed milk and bring it to a boil. Stir in the milk mixture into the rice and continue cooking over medium heat for 15 to 18 minutes or until the mixture is thick, stir constantly. Add the raisins, and stir well. Dust with ground cinnamon and serve.
Note: A good sing for me is to cook until the liquid it's just below the level of rice. The rice will
continue to absorbe the liquid even after cooking.