You are quite amazing — and funny — and I am most likely predictable. You were right in guessing that there was stewed fruit involved in my dessert. What else? I could well have used tapioca — actually I did too one evening to use fruit leftovers — but instead, my dessert was an unpretentious rice pudding. To make P. happy. Because rice pudding is really a special dessert in his eyes.
In fact, both P. and I are big fans of rice pudding. Moi ? It brings fond memories of my childhood when my grandmother used to make it for us at the farm. I doubt that she was using Arborio rice then but nonetheless, her rice pudding was authentic, the quintessence of comfort food: she would use the milk they produced and the fruit they grew. As to P. ? I am actually not sure. All I can see today though is an obvious well-anchored history with this dessert: he simple adores rice pudding. So much so that he often begs for me to prepare it, especially on evenings when we are short of dessert ideas, feeling that yogurt, un carré de chocolat noir or a piece of fruit is not enough to satisfy our sugar craving.
With this in mind, I cooked rice pudding a few times this past week, and made tapioca pudding too. At each time, I chose to use coconut milk instead of regular cow’s milk. A pretty welcoming twist to the traditional dessert.
My rice pudding has simple quality ingredients: Arborio rice, rhubarb, strawberries, coconut milk, grated coconut and a tiny bit of sugar. I like the idea of mixing cooked fruit with raw pieces for a contrast of textures and food temperature, and add crunchiness by topping the dessert with coarsely chopped green pistachios and slivered almonds. This recipe is simple to make and fairly quick to assemble. We also like to eat rice pudding warm, so this is how I typically prefer to serve it.
So yes, perhaps I am talking about spring as if it were here already, and frankly I really wish for it now. But there are really worse things that can happen than long for spring, non ? In fact, we did not even mind seeing snowflakes today during the lovely walk we took with our friend K. and her dog at one of our favorite beaches — empty besides a few horses, walkers and dogs. Instead, it gave us a really good excuse to comfort ourselves with a nice dinner — probably a vegetable stir fry with salad — and finish it with rice pudding, once again.
What else is there on Sunday evening, I ask you?
Note: I have reorganized the Recipe Index and added a Link page, as you can see in the menu options at the top, and on the right panel of my site. Take a look. The recipe index is nearly finished, but I will keep working on its format until I find one that I am fully happy with. So come back to see the changes.
- 3 oz Arborio rice
- 2 cups coconut milk
- 2 Tbsp blond cane sugar
- 3 Tbsp blanched slivered almonds, chopped coarsely
- 2 Tbsp green unsalted shelled pistachios, chopped coarsely
- 2 sticks of rhubarb, peeled and diced (5.5 oz)
- 9 oz strawberries diced, (+ 5 to 6 more kept intact)
- 1/3 cup blond cane sugar
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 4 green cardamom pods
- 1 vanilla, split open and seeds scraped
- 2 Tbsp water
For the rice:
For the fruit:
- To prepare the fruit, dissolve 1/3 cup sugar with 2 Tbsp water and add the strawberries and rhubarb with the cinnamon and vanilla seeds and pod. Simmer until the fruit is tender (about 15 min.) Remove the vanilla bean, let cool and divide between 4 glasses.
- In the meantime, rinse the rice under cold water and drain.
- Heat the coconut milk with the cardamom pods. When it reaches boiling point, add the rice and mix. Cover and cook on low heat for 25 min or so, until most of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. Mix a few times while cooking. Discard the cardamom pods and add 2 Tbsp sugar; mix.
- Serve lukewarm on top of the stewed fruits and add the nuts and fresh strawberries.
- 80 g de riz arborio
- 500 ml de lait de coco non sucré
- 2 càs de sucre de canne blond
- 3 càs d’amandes en julienne blanchies, hachées grossièrement
- 2 càs de pistaches vertes non salées, hachées grossièrement
- 2 bâtons de rhubarbe, pelés et coupés en dés (150 g)
- 250 g de fraises, coupées en dés (+ 5 to 6 entières)
- 70 g de sucre de canne blond
- 1/4 càc de cannelle en poudre
- 4 capsules de cardamome verte
- 1 gousse de vanille, fendue et grattée
- 2 càs d’eau
Pour le riz :
Pour les fruits :
- Pour préparer les fruits, faites dissoudre 70 g de sucre dans 2 càs d’eau et ajoutez les fruits et la cannelle avec les graines et la gousse de vanille. Faites compoter doucement pendant environ 15 min à feu doux. Retirez la gousse et laissez refroidir avant de diviser entre 4 verres.
- Pendant ce temps, rinsez le riz sous de l’eau froide. Égouttez.
- Dans une casserole, chauffez le lait de coco avec les capsules de cardamome jusqu’à la première ébullition. Versez le riz en pluie, mélangez et faites cuire à couvert sur feu doux pendant environ 25 min. Mélangez de temps à autre et vérifiez la cuisson du riz (tout le liquide doit être presque absorbé). Retirez les capsules de cardamome, et ajoutez 2 càs de sucre; mélangez.
- Servez tiède sur la compote de fraises/rhubarbe avec les noix concassées et les fruits frais.