Cook the cereal and vanilla pod in the milk until the grains are tender. Remove the vanilla pod, split it, and scrape the seeds into the pudding. Stir in the sugar while the mixture is still hot, and allow it to cool. Whip the cream, fold it in, and spoon the mixture into ramekins. Sprinkle on a layer of sugar to cover the surface, and put under a hot grill until it melts and caramelizes. Remove from the heat and refrigerate. You can achieve a similar effect by cooking the sugar until it just caramelizes, and then pouring it over the chilled pudding. It should set to a nice glossy brittle surface.
© 1995 Frances Bissell. All rights reserved.