- 3/4 cup long-grain white rice
- 1-½ cups water
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- One cinnamon stick
- 4 cups whole milk
- ½ cup sugar (I prefer unbleached organic sugar)
- ½ to 3/4 teaspoon natural vanilla extract or another high-quality vanilla extract (…natural vanilla extract can be purchased in most Mexican or Hispanic markets)
- 1/3 cup raisins
- Bring rice, water, salt, and cinnamon stick to a boil over medium-high heat in a medium saucepan.
- Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Stir in the milk and sugar and cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 30–40 minutes, stirring almost constantly, until rice and milk form a thick porridge. (Pudding will thicken slightly more when removed from heat.)
- Remove pudding from the heat, stir in the vanilla and raisins, and remove the cinnamon stick (or any pieces of the stick, if it has fallen apart).
- Place pudding into a large bowl or cups for serving.
- If not serving immediately, cover with plastic wrap (Joy of Cooking recommends gently pressing the plastic wrap against the surface of the pudding, so as to prevent a skin from forming), and refrigerate.
- Serve warm, cold, or at room temperature.