Rice Pudding (Arroz Con Leche): Instant Pot Simplified

Fun news! We were featured in the food blog EatLikeNoOneElse: A Foodie’s State Of Mind last week!! Our Zuppa Toscana recipe has been a big hit. Go check out Eric’s very comprehensive content on every ingredient you could ever think of. When I visit his site, I start by searching for a recipe and end up learning about the history of a Topaz apple! I think you’ll enjoy it too.

My memories of Arroz Con Leche stem from growing up in Spain, where it is one of the core desserts that graces every high-end and home cook’s table alike. My Yaya (mom’s mom) and my mom made it often, and it was my passion. Whenever I helped my Yaya with any cleaning or spent the day with her, she generously asked what could she make for me. I always asked for Arroz Con Leche (literally means rice with milk- or rice pudding). Turning her recipe into an Instant Pot success took many bowl-fulls served as breakfasts, snacks and desserts. All turned out good, except one try when Nathan said it tasted like macaroni and cheese- Hmmm.

This version of rice pudding is very simple with the basic ingredients that make Spanish Arroz Con Leche.

Simple Rice Pudding In the Instant Pot

  • 6 cups of whole milk (your choice of non-dairy works too)

  • 2 cups of water

  • 2 cups white short grain rice (long works fine too)

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 sticks of cinnamon

  • 1 lemon peel (not the peel of a whole lemon, only a 3 or 4 inch piece), optional

Add all the ingredients to the electric pressure cooker and whisk until sugar seems dissolved. Cover and set on Porridge function (or 20 minutes on high pressure if using another brand of electric pressure cooker). The Instant Pot takes a few minutes to reach pressure and automatically cooks for 20 minutes. Allow 20 minutes on low (after pressure cooking is complete), for delicious rice. We like it soft, so I allow it to slow release which takes about 40 minutes. Stir the rice pudding in the cooker before serving for more even texture and sweetness. If it seems dry for your liking, incorporate more milk when serving. This recipe can be cut in half with great results.

with love. Damaris

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…for love is strong as death

The fragrance of the wedding lilies and the echoes of the bridal pearls flood my senses. This day. Fifteen years in covenant.

My Love,

Yesterday I looked through my twine-wrapped bundle of daily letters sent from you and your shoebox of letters from me. I read how two souls longed to be poured out and lovingly received. I had visions of when our story began – We spent every minute we could together, then so soon we vowed. Our covenant words still clear: “I will do you good and not harm all of the days of your life.”

These golden fifteen years have transformed us together through the delight of God, and He has bountifully blessed us by the gifts of seven-fold.

Your hand and heart give out blessings to us and others, and you never cease to minister comfort, joy, help, healing, strength, and safety. We are satisfied in your unselfish kindness.

The verse still etched inside my ring:

“Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm,

for love is strong as death.” – Song of Solomon 8:6

with unending love. Damaris


Special Visitors

Being born and raised in Spain with all of my relatives still there, there are many ocean miles which separate my family! Although this wonderful technology allows us to talk regularly to my parents, my aunt, and my cousins, a visit from my parents is a celebratory occurrence. A couple of weeks ago, my dad and mom spent several days with us. Here are little snippets of happy days:

We celebrated my mom’s birthday simply, but not without enjoying a delicious carrot cake. Carrot cake has been her favorite as long as I can remember. No one can decide if it’s the butter cream frosting or the moist spice cake…or both…that they love the most – I’ll have to share the recipe with you soon!

Nathan and I went to dinner and a stroll through town on his birthday. Yayo and Yaya (my children’s names for my parents) put the kids to bed early so when we came back from our date it would be restful and quiet. Isn’t that so sweet and thoughtful?

The more time I spend with my parents, the more I realize how I sometimes underestimate their deep genuine care for their adult daughter. Sometimes I’ve wondered if I crazy love my children only because they need me so much now – will it always be this strong? I know it won’t fade when they no longer depend on me, though, because I’ve seen it in my parents.

How grateful I am for their commitment to persevere and grow in their marriage! They’re blessed to share 45 years together. Even though they’d acknowledge many mistakes along the way, with that time comes many insights as well, I’m sure.

I love to see Yayo and Yaya’s enjoyment of my children! Although many months go by between visits, everyone’s excitement, and love so obviously abounds when we’re together again. The kids need not a minute to warm up and pick up where they’d left off.

Before my parents left, my Dad encouraged me to take a few minutes daily for myself. “It will help you these days and in the future if you have 15 minutes of quiet and alone time.” His advice has helped me look for moments to light a candle, read a Psalm, add prayer requests to my prayer notebook, or make a new simple scone recipe without little floured helping hands.

Gracias, Yayo and Yaya!

with love. Damaris


Family Currents

The enormous happening at our house this week was the visit of Spanish grandparents whom we call Yayo and Yaya! While my parents are here for a few days, we have a little something special planned for every day of their stay – birthday celebrations with cake and ice cream, multiple rounds of UNO, a Toys R Us visit, Arby’s lunch, hair curling, sewing projects, a petting farm, and sweetest of all, Nathan and I went on a date on his birthday! We will miss them so much when they fly back to Spain in a few days!!


We make a pot of this smooth tea almost everyday! It tastes especially delicious in the afternoons when we are all slowing down and begin to wish it was almost supper time! It is decaffeinated (perfect for the little guys) and a pleasant combination of spices. We always enjoy the tea with a little cream (or milk) and honey. It’s the best chai when served hot, warm, or iced! Is there a favorite family drink at your house?


Our girls love to fill the rooms with sweetness and joy! They delight to cut flowers and make rooms bright and cheery! Sweet Williams are the most picked lately since they have a brother with the same name -ha!

with love. Damaris


My Spanish Indulgence

Growing up in Spain meant Nutella was a staple…although we called it ‘nocilla‘. All children can count on this glossy chocolate spread to be in the pantry for merienda (afternoon snack). Nutella made schooldays sweet! My heart swells with national pride to see my children love it as much as I do! lol

In a gaggle of women, you can spot me as the Spaniard right away . But really, my family is all from Spain as many ancestral generations as we can recall.

If you know me, you know that I don’t like to make cookies – I avoid it all expense. And before you feel sorry for my deprived children, I disclose that their tummies are full of delicious cookie bars.

Now you understand why this recipe is perfect! My childhood’s favorite chocolate spread in a bar! These come together very quickly and bake in no time. While hazelnuts can sometimes be hard to come by, you can usually find them in the by-the-pound section of your local grocer.

Photo Credit: Eva

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/2 cups Flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon Baking Powder

  • 1/2 cup softened butter

  • 1/2 cup packed Brown Sugar

  • 1 Egg

  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla

  • 3/4 Nutella (or as much as you need to cover the dough)

  • 1/4 cup chopped Hazelnuts (optional)

  • Salt (for sprinkling on top – optional)

Preheat your oven to 350ยบF. Grease an 8 inch square pan. In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients except the Nutella and the hazelnuts. Gently press half of the dough onto the bottom of the pan. Spread the Nutella on top of the dough. Then sprinkle the remaining dough over the Nutella. Sprinkle the chopped hazelnuts over the crumbles of dough and gently press it all down. Sprinkle a pinch of salt, if you’d like to – yum. Bake @ 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until the bottom crust looks golden brown.

Buen Provecho!

with love. Damaris