There’s something strangely comforting about watching certain movies over and over again, even if they’re not particularly good or even one of your favorites. Even if it would shame you if everyone you know knew that you couldn’t turn away from “Notting Hill” or “Love Actually” or any romantic comedy starring Tom Hanks and pre-collagen Meg Ryan. Because I can’t.

Sunday afternoon, I stayed home from Jeff’s soccer game to curl up on the couch and watch “You’ve Got Mail.”

It was just so cold outside and soooooo warm inside.

The perfect conditions to make some Arborio Rice Pudding. And eat it.

OK, so, fess up and share my shame. What movies lull you in and make you watch them over and over again? A romantic comedy, perhaps? Some corny action movie or really bad sci-fi/horror movie or something starring Patrick Swayze? As Kyra Sedgwick says every week on “The Closer” in her extreme Southern accent: CawnFAYusss!

Arborio Rice Pudding

Adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s “Baking: From My Home to Yours”

Makes 4 servings

  • 1/4 cup Arborio rice (Use 1/2 cup for a thick pudding.)
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • Dash of cinnamon
  1. Put the rice and water in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan. Bring to a boil. Lower the temperature and cook the rice, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Drain the rice in a strainer and rinse it. Set aside.
  2. Rinse out the saucepan, then pour in the milk, stir in the sugar, and set the pan over medium heat. When the milk boils, stir in the parboiled rice. Reduce the heat to low, and let the mixture bubble away gently, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes. (As the pudding gets close to done, the rice kernels will be visible in the boiling milk. The pudding will thicken in the refrigerator.)
  3. Remove the pan from the heat, and add the vanilla, raisins and cinnamon. Stir to combine. Serve immediately, or press plastic wrap against the surface of the pudding, and refrigerate it for at least 6 hours.