I met a couple at the Market recently who raved about this Coconut Rice Pudding recipe that they tried in a recipe brochure that I had handed out years ago. This Coconut Rice Pudding is what I would call comfort food for anytime of year. The velvety texture that you receive from eating this pudding is hard to resist, but oh so good for you! It's lovely to add blueberries, peaches, mangoes or any fruit in season. Since it is blueberry season here in the Northeast, I have made a maple blueberry sauce for the topping or you can just add a few fresh blueberries to top the rice pudding. Also toasted coconut can be added for a nice tasty crunch and/or cinnamon for a warm and spicy touch.
I use Arborio Rice in this recipe which is a variety of short-grained rice, used primarily in the classical preparation of risotto. Originally cultivated in Italy, today it's grown in California and Texas, too. Because it undergoes less milling than ordinary long-grained rice, it retains more of its natural starch content. Cooking releases this starch, giving risotto its creamy consistency.
I am glad I was inspired to make this once again by frequented customers of our maple products at a local Farmer's Market.
2 (14 oz.) Cans Coconut Milk
1 C Arborio Rice
1/3 C Maple Sugar
1/2 Tsp. Salt
1 Cup Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
2 Tsp. Vanilla Extract
Fruit and/or Toasted Coconut For Topping
Combine the coconut milk with 2 1/2 cup water, the rice, maple sugar; and salt in a medium-sized pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
When rice is done cooking, remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Cool completely and chill for 2-3 hours.
Spread coconut flakes on a sheet pan and toast in oven at 350 degrees until golden brown and fragrant (about 5 minutes). Set aside until you are ready to serve the dessert.
Spoon the pudding into individual cups and sprinkle with toasted coconut and/or fruit.
Serves 6-8 people.