Ris à l’amande (Danish rice pudding)

This dish is French in name, but it’s a very fun Danish family tradition. For years, I could not eat it after overindulging as a kid, desperate to find the whole almond hidden in the dessert. Now I’m more strategic. If you’re really good at deflecting attention and hiding it in your mouth, you can slip it to a child undetected.


  1. A witness must be present when placing the single, whole almond into the pudding.
  2. No poking around in the bowl!
  3. Whoever gets it should hide it until the pudding is gone and everyone is stuffed and stumped as to who has it.
  4. The host can’t win the gift, which is traditionally a marzipan pig – presuming the winner ate the most?

This recipe serves 6 to 8 people.

Ris à l’amande

Cook for 1 hour:
125 g (1 cup) short-grain rice
1 L milk

Add to warm pudding, stir, cool:
3 Tbsp sugar
1 vanilla bean (scraped, or 1 tsp vanilla)

Fold in:
500 mL whipped cream
100 g slivered, blanched almonds
1 whole, blanched almond (see rule #1, above)

Serve cold. Let guests serve themselves (see rule #2, above).

Top with:
Warm bing cherry sauce (available canned), or
Warm wild cranberry sauce (our Yukon-ised version)
It’s also delicious served warm with cinnamon-sugar and a hunk of butter.

Værsgo’ og glædelig jul! (Enjoy! Merry Christmas.)

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