24 December 2013

24 Days of Danish Christmas : 24 : Ris a l'amande / Almond Rice Pudding

Part of the special ending to every Danish Christmas Eve dinner is the dessert. 
This is no mere simple dessert that one simply eats and then, says thank you. 
Oh no, this one entails complete participation. 
What makes this dessert special is 'the chase'...the chase of a single whole almond hidden in a sea of wonderfully delicious and sweet rice pudding filled with chopped almonds that both family and friends take serious to the point that amazing devious and deceptive tactics are employed to deceive all participating until the whole bowl is empty.
And I mean complete participation on a level that make mere mortals make faces and contort as each spoonful is eaten with a sense of anticipation of finding the single full almond in a mouthful of both rise and chopped almonds. 
Best are the faces of those who have never participated in this Juletide ritual. Each mouthful is amazing to see as mouth and eyes concentrate to make sure that each spoonful does not accidentally eat the prized almond. 
The almond may be discovered early on or late in the emptying bowl game. But, all remain silent until the bowl is empty. It's a simply rule. But, one that makes the chase the best part of having this wonderful dessert.
It is at this moment that the hidden whole almond is revealed...and the marzipan piggy is awarded to usher in the new year full of good luck.


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