In a large, heavy-bottomed pot, combine milk, rice, sugar, vanilla caviar and pod, and salt. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring gently.
Cover pot, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 15 minutes. Uncover pot and continue to cook, stirring often, until rice is very tender and pudding has thickened slightly, about 15 minutes more. Remove pot from heat and let pudding cool for 5 minutes; fish out the vanilla bean pod before transferring to a heatproof bowl.
refrigerate until cold and thick, at least 4 hours or as long as overnight.
Tip: may add 2 large egg yolks and a sot of dark rum during the last 5 minutes of cooking for a more grownup twist.
Note: this recipe calls for medium grain white rice (not long- or short-grain rice), which lends the perfect amount of starch, creaminess, and texture to the pudding.