Rice, eggs, milk: simple ingredients for an everyday recipe that belongs to Reggiana tradition. In Reggio, it is a homemade desert that you can also find at the bakery or in cafes and is also eaten for breakfast. It has many variations and each family has a personalised recipe with different ingredients, preparation methods and cooking times. In the countryside, in the early 1900s, preparing a rice cake was a genuine rite; it was cooked very slowly over the coals in the fireplace and many hours were needed to reach the desired level of doneness. Once upon a time, the cake was prepared for the country festival and in accordance with family tradition, the dough could be enriched with almonds, amaretti or raisins, resulting in either a softer or harder rice cake. The recipe that we propose is very similar to Marta Ferrari’s version; it is the simplest but the most widely one used to obtain a glossy cake surface, along with a crust that is a little burnt, but not too dry.
1 litre of whole milk (fresh that day if possible)
150 g rice
150 g of sugar
one lemon skin
a vanilla stick
a pinch of salt
1 small glass of Sassolino or Anisetta Cocchi
Boil the milk with the stick of vanilla, the lemon skin and a pinch of salt. Once boiling put in the rice, stir and cook for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the lemon skin and
let the mixture cool, stirring occasionally to prevent the skin on the milk from forming. Then add the sugar, Sassolino or Anisetta Cocchi and egg yolks, one at a
time: the yolks must be well blended into th: the yolks must be well blended into the mixture first, before adding the next. Finally, add the egg whites on top. Pour the mixture into a buttered cake tin or one lined with greaseproof paper and let it let stand 2 to 3 hours. Then bake at 180 C for 45 minutes. When the cake is baked and still warm, add sugar and sprinkle with drops of Sassolino or Anisetta Cocchi. It smells absolutely wonderful!