Today was all about Loretta.
She begged for a doll and for rice pudding. She got both.
The pudding is a Tamar Adler recipe that I've made a few times before since I usually have cold rice in the fridge and coconut milk in the pantry.
And the doll? It called for a poem.
Suddenly, after seven years of girlhood,
you wanted a doll.
In the toy aisle, there's Rachel, Tess,
Ashley, Star. They have horses, roller skates,
tea sets, electric guitars, and big price tags
next to your crumpled allowance.
You pick Phoebe
because her hair is long.
You're talking to her before we're home.
I forget how much love you have to give.
Now, on the living room floor, you're brushing,
humming, cooing, changing her shoes,
making her a bed. Something in me knows
this is the easiest
being a girl will ever be--
before rejection, scales, first love,
before unraveling, tidal desires--
one suntanned, lively second grader
who wants only a doll, a Sunday afternoon,
and snacks all around.
Coconut Rice Pudding
I don't know how Loretta got rice pudding in her head, but she did. My kids have a one-track mind (treats!) just like their mother has a one-track mind (cheese!). Phoebe had some too, of course.
2 c. cold cooked rice
2 c. coconut milk
1 c. heavy cream
1/3 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
grate of nutmeg
1 tsp. vanilla
lime zest if you like
Combine all ingredients except lime zest in a heavy medium saucapan. Stir and bring to a simmer. Turn to low and cook until rice has absorbed a lot of the liquid and pudding is the consistency you like. Tamar says 50 minutes--I did more like 25. Once done, spoon into bowls and top with lime zest, if you like. (or stewed fruit, cinnamon, toasted nuts...) Phoebe likes hers plain.