During these warm days of summer, a cool dessert seems like just the solution. Fortunately, French writer and chef Rahel Jarach-Sztern has been kind enough to supply one! Known in her family by its Judeo-Spanish name of “sotlachico” but also variously called “sutlach” or "sütlaç," it basically means "milky food."
Said to be originally from Central Asia, sotlachico came to the Balkans with the Silk Road. The creamy mixture of rice, milk and sugar was often prepared for people suffering from stomach problems. Hence, for a long time it was considered a healing food.
Says Jarach: “This dessert is delicious for summer days and a classic for Shavuot too. It is a tradition in my Salonican family. My grandmother passed it on to me, and it was included in the family cookbook we created for our oldest daughter’s Bat Mitzvah.” Please enjoy!
P.S. You can find more of Rahel’s recipes here in her book, Recettes Familiales ashkénazes, judéo-espagnoles et judéo-italiennes:
-1 pack of rice flour or semolina
-½ liter of cold milk
Put a cup of cold milk aside.
Boil the rest of the milk in a saucepan with 6 teaspoons of sugar
Add 6 teaspoons of semolina (or flour) to the cup of cold milk.
When the milk is boiling, add slowly the milk with semolina and mix without stopping until it starts boiling again and the cream thickens.
Pour in small bowls and sprinkle with cinnamon (you can draw patterns).
Put in fridge until it becomes really cold, and serve it directly from the fridge.