Thursday, July 26, 2012

Rice and Fruit Salad

Oh my stars, guess who forgot to plug in her post for Thursday????

I blame Dave. He's got this week off and a girl gets positively distracted by all that muscle... the wood piles... the sound of a chainsaw reclaiming my yard at long last!!!

Clearly, it's his fault I'm a dunce and can't keep my days of the week straight if the littlest thing changes.

You would think lists would help, right?

But then you have to find the lists.


And you'd think "Wow! Ruthy has a SMART phone. With a Make a List App!!!  Surely she could access that????"

Not when the phone is smarter than the user.

So anyway, here's what should have posted five hours ago:

Rice and Fruit Salad

(The reason for this salad is that we kind of sort of invited ourselves and possibly a few others to a party last Sunday... In doing so, we realized that one Fried Turkey wouldn't be enough and that an extra salad or dish to pass might be in everyone's best interests. In reality, WE WERE CORRECTAMUNDO! So this is the cupboard salad I threw together to balance the decadent chocolate peanut butter chip cookies I brought)

1 can pineapple chunks
1 can mandarin oranges
3 nectarines, chopped medium (skin on)
3 cups pineapple rice made with basmati rice or some rice that is not gooey, Missy!!! (to follow)
2 cups vanilla pudding (I used homemade, recipe below)
1 pint whipping cream, whipped and lightly sweetened

Drain fruit in cans, reserve liquid. Add enough water to make 3 cups. Add 2 tablespoons sugar and a splash of olive oil to liquid. Bring to boil. Add 1 1/2 cups rice to boiling syrup water. Bring back to boil, cover and simmer until liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes.

If you're in a hurry like I was because (sigh....) you're on a time frame, chill finished rice in FREEZER. Hey, whatever works, right????

Make pudding while rice simmers:

Melt 2 tablespoons butter
Mix 3/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup cornstarch. Add to butter.
Whisk in 2 cups milk and 2 egg yolks.

Heat to boiling over medium/medium high heat, stirring constantly while reading Mary Connealy's In Too Deep. (Yes, I'm behind in my reading too! Oy!!!)

Place plastic wrap over pudding and chill in freezer. If you're making this the day before like a normal person, the whole freezing thing isn't exactly necessary.

Whip cream. Taste for accuracy and deliciousness and possible poisonous effects. If no poisonous reaction occurs (and there's still whipped cream remaining), set in fridge until ready to assemble.

You can throw mini-marshmallows in here. A lot of recipes call for that. I don't like when they get all squishy, wet sticky sweet, so I'm not doing that in this recipe. I tried it and liked it better with the less-sweet taste and texture of the rice/fruit/dressing.


Mix rice, fruit, pudding together. Fold in whipped cream. Garnish with fruit if desired, or hurriedly pack in car along with apparatus to fry Oreos in beer batter and rush to party. But don't speed!!!! And try to remember they closed Hill Road to replace the old bridge....

But here's the thing: If you bring cookies, delicious fruit salad and make folks fried Oreos while they lounge in the back yard, they're very forgiving.


  1. ok this sounds a lot like a dessert to me! I was wondering where the post was earlier (night shift for me!)

  2. Oh, oh, oh. I can do this! I have fresh cherries and will toss some toasted coconut on top! YUM!!!!!

    Thanks for making my morning.

    Peace, Julie

    1. I almost added the toasted coconut, Julie... but we had some folks who don't like coconut, so I erred on the side of caution. I would love the tropical touch!

  3. Fried oreos in beer batter?????? Ugh!!!!

    And rats to not picking up cornstarch yesterday because I think I have everything else and could have made this. It sounds scrumptious. Though I'd substitute peaches for nectarines -- I could do that, right?

    So, if you weren't doing this in a mad dash would you just toss it all together and put it in the fridge overnight to chill? And could you substitute the vanilla pudding mix package instead of the homemade version? Or custard instead of vanilla pudding?

    Lots of questions this morning. :-)

    1. Yes, to all Kav-a-licious! All of my friends would be using a packaged pudding and we'd still love it! And the day before???

      PERFECT!!! :)

      By the time we got done inviting a whole bunch of folks to Lisa's house, we realized the food we had coming might not stretch. Hence the hurry.

      But still, wonderful.... !!!

    2. Oh, Kav... Deep fried Oreos are to die for. Really naughty Carnival and/or Southern fair. But you're thinking you can taste the beer? Naw, never. It's just got enough yeast/hops/whatevers to make the batter puff and taste crispy-amazing. Really, it sounds weird (like me) but you would be totally lovin' on it. We did peanut butter Oreos, Chocolate Oreos (Delish!!!!) and double stuff.... Oh mylanta, I think I loved Double Stuff the best!

    3. Ok, I shouldn't have read deep fried Oreos so early before breakfast. Ick.

    4. Munoz/Carmichael, they aren't ick... They're melt-in-your-mouth amazing. I had one last year and knew I could make it better... So I did, LOL! The beer batter (which sounds bad but is really a light, fluffy crispy batter when fried) is amazing on these. I dip the cookies in flour first... then the batter. Then deep fry.

      Oh. Yum. Twinkies... Snickers bars... 3 Musketeers.... Deep fried everything. Clearly it's carnival time in upstate!!!

  4. See, and if you provide them recipes for these things - and yummy pictures - they're also very forgiving of lapses of memory and missing blog posts.

    Samples would be nice. :) If the smart phone can figure that out.

    1. We need a Yankee Belle Sampler Smorgasbord at a conference or book signing sometime.

      Missy, get on that, will you, dear????? ;)

    2. Ruthy, I noticed this last night but I just figured my pies were so beautiful that you ahd to give them an extra day. :D

    3. Virginia, you were correct, as always. They needed more time on air... And I'm a tad forgetful some weeks.

  5. Ruthy, I'm sure they would have welcomed you even without the extra food!

    This sounds yummy and easy - I'll have to try it!

  6. Jan, they might have, but they would never have let me live it down. You know how friends are!!! And I liked this better than our old stand-by acini de pepe salad.... The rice texture made this like a pudding with fruit (yeah, Susanna, kind of dessert-ish, but that's what summer's for, right?)

    So I liked it a lot.

  7. OH. YUM!!!!!!

    I've never heard of this. Why? Why has this never crossed my plate??

    It almost makes me think of the agua de orchata (rice water and sugar/cinnamon) drink my husband makes... or the sweet rice he makes. YUM.

    Definitely going to try this!!

    1. It's like a form of sweet rice and rice pudding. With fruit.

      So tasty and yummy, but if you use cheap rice you ruin it. Cheap rice is so tacky and gummy. The texture of this rice is like a gift from God. Whoever developed the better rice grains should be hugged and kissed a lot.

  8. Oh Virgina, I'm starting to crave something Christmasy. :)

    Wonder why.

    1. Christmas... I love Christmas. And this is how my mind worked today as Dave and Seth have been clearing our woods (read: Jungle) of underbrush, and cleaning out around the old shed, and disposing of very old decaying bones.... ( I may be exaggerating slightly on that last part)

      I was thinking of where I could put Christmas decorations to make this old house look totally Currier and Ives.


    2. Oh, I saw that cover on facebook!!!!! Oh, Virginia, Yes! There is a Santa Claus!!!!

  9. I've never had anything like this. It sounds amazing! A doctored up rice pudding. I love it!!

    1. Missy, exactly! I will bring some to you. Except you live far away.

      In the South. With the bugs and the heat and the humidity.

      Sign me:

      Northern Wuss Girl

    2. You can bring it to me in October. It'll be cool by then. :)

    3. Moonlight and Magnolias... One of these days! I even entered the Maggies, Missy! But I crashed and burned... Still, finaling would have been enough to get me to Georgia!!! ;)

      Maybe next year. Or the next!

  10. Sounds soooo good! Rice and I have a love-hate relationship. I love it when it's not sticky, but I have an awful time cooking it the way I want it. And yes, I buy good quality rice. And I try hard to follow the cooking directions. Then again, I'm sometimes a bit rebellious when it comes to directions, so maybe that's where the problem lies.

    Still... this is tempting me..... Yup, I'm gonna have to try it. But if the rice gets yucky, I'm not going to be a happy camper. You understand that, right? I'll be passing the blame along when hubby's tongue starts sticking to the roof of his mouth.

    1. Carol, it might not be you. Really, truly. I have a heavy-duty cast aluminum (really ugly) pan that I use for rice. I love cast aluminum for certain things because it holds the heat perfectly, no hot spots, no scorching. It's the perfect simmer pot.

      My rice never comes out quite as perfectly in a stainless steel pot. Isn't that weird? But it's true, so watch for a cheap cast aluminum pot. (They're crazy expensive in stores, but I buy them at garage sales. And years ago my boys THREW ONE AWAY that was in the garage. Of course if you saw my garage back then, you'd know that they were overwhelmed by the task of cleaning it.

      But I've missed that big soup pot ever since! Beth found me one at a garage sale... $3

      It's huge and amazing.

      Love it! The one I cook rice in is a 4.5 quart Dutch oven type. I could use a slightly smaller one, 2 or 3 quart... We'll keep scouting those sales! Old folks had 'em and used 'em a lot. They work great.

    2. Hmm... I used to have a whole set of cast aluminum pots. I replaced them a few years ago with a set of very heavy stainless steel ones, but I kept the aluminum Dutch oven as an extra soup pot. I've never tried cooking rice in anything that big, but maybe it's worth the experiment. If it works, I'll definitely have to hunt up a regular sized aluminum to use especially for my rice. I'll let you know if what I learn... i.e., whether it's my fault, or the pot's! :D

  11. Rice cookers are great for cooking consistently great rice. Also, my husband is part Spanish and we use Canilla rice. This type of rice we soak for a few moments and rinse until water runs clear. I'd never heard ofthisbefore I was married and always thought I was rinsing away the nutrients but what you are really doing is rinsing away the starch so the rice is not sticky. When not using for the recipe above, I sauté garlic in olive oil, add rice and stir to coat each piece and you kinda fry it for a few minutes then add water and boil. Works great, taste great.

    1. Maddie, I've done this and used the Sazon seasoning in the oil to make yellow rice... My Hispanic son-in-law's mother showed us this years ago and it's wonderful. I never thought of doing it for regular cooking, though. To 'fry' the rice lightly first. Although that's part of the base for Rice-a-roni...

      Great tip! Thank you!