750 ml (3 cups) milk200 gm (1 cup) short-grain rice, such as arborio20 gm butter, diced1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped1 piece of thinly peeled lemon rind110 gm (½ cup) caster sugar60 gm plain flour1 egg, lightly beaten1 tbsp golden rum1 tsp baking powder Vegetable oil, for deep-fryingPure icing sugar, for dustingRhubarb and winter strawberry jam400 gm rhubarb, trimmed, cut into 2.5cm pieces200 gm strawberries, hulled, halved600 gm white sugar Juice of ½ lemon
Combine milk, rice, butter, vanilla bean and seeds and lemon rind in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until rice is tender (20-25 minutes). Transfer to a bowl, cool to room temperature (30-45 minutes) and discard vanilla bean. Add sugar, flour, egg, rum, and baking powder, stir to combine and refrigerate until firm (4-6 hours; if the mixture feels a little too wet add 1 tbsp of plain flour until it comes together).
For rhubarb and strawberry jam, place rhubarb, strawberries and 50ml water in a saucepan over medium heat. and cook partially covered, stirring frequently, until rhubarb is tender (12-15 minutes). Add sugar and lemon juice and cook until mixture reaches setting point (15-20 minutes; see cook’s notes p177). Set aside to cool.
Heat oil to 180C in a deep-fryer or deep saucepan. Deep-fry heaped tablespoonfuls of batter in batches until golden (2-3 minutes; be careful, hot oil will spit). Dust with icing sugar and serve with rhubarb and strawberry jam.