A completely gluten, sugar and dairy-free dessert, this soothing rice dish would normally be referred to in the UK as ‘rice pudding’ but the word ‘pudding’ doesn’t have the same comforting connotation in the US as it does back home. So I won’t call it that.
I used my favorite recent discovery – calorie-free monk fruit sugar, plus a combination of coconut and macadamia nut milks, making this almost entirely guilt free, that is if you don’t count the carbs. Carb-guilt notwithstanding, it’s absolutely delicious.
You can make it in under 30 minutes (not counting 30 minutes to soak the rice) – and I like to serve it chilled, so make it a day or two ahead and keep it in the fridge, covered with cling film.
I’m including a second recipe for a rice ‘dessert’; this time made with risotto (Arborio) rice and it’s completely fat free, although you’d never know it.
The rice isn’t soaked so the natural rice starch creates a very creamy pudding that’s sweetened with maple syrup, dotted with plump golden raisins and fragrant with cinnamon and vanilla – its one of the nicest rice puddings I’ve ever tasted. Perfect for fall or winter when you want something to make you feel cozy.
So here they are.
COCONUT RICE with LIME ZEST
1/2 cup (120ml measure) of white Basmati rice
One 14 oz (400ml) can of unsweetened coconut milk
1 1/4 cups (300ml) of unsweetened nut milk (almond or macadamia)
1/3 cup (80ml) of monk fruit sugar – or 1/2 cup (120ml measure) of regular white sugar
2 heaped teaspoons of finely grated lime zest, chopped
Pinch of salt
Put the rice in a bowl and cover with cold water to soak for 30 minutes – drain.
In a heavy based pan, bring the milk, coconut milk, rice, sugar and a pinch of salt to the boil.
Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook uncovered for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally and more frequently towards the end.
Take it off the heat and add the lime zest.
Serve while still warm or better still, make it a couple of days ahead – cover and chill.
And now for the other comfort food recipe:
MAPLE RICE PUDDING WITH GOLDEN RAISINS
4 cups (960ml) of skim milk (or your favorite unsweetened nut milk)
2/3 cup (160ml measure) of Arborio rice, unwashed
2/3 cup (160ml) of pure maple syrup
1/4 cup (60ml measure) of golden raisins/sultanas
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1/4 teaspoon each of ground cinnamon and nutmeg
Combine the first four ingredients in a heavy pan and bring to the boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to a very low simmer, cover with a lid and cook for 50 minutes until creamy, stirring occasionally.
Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients.
I like this one served warm.