Tuesday, November 18, 2008

TWD: Coconut Cherry Rice Pudding


Up this week: an ultimate comfort food dessert - rice pudding! Thanks be to Isabelle for another recipe that doesn't have two sticks of butter in it. I hate to break the bad news first, but I had two problems with this recipe. Not really problems so much as... qualms, I guess you'd call them. After reading it through the first time, I thought to myself that using arborio rice was sorta neat. I mean, you want your rice pudding to be creamy, but you want to taste individual grains of rice. Mush is not what I go for when making rice pudding, because guess what? I have all of my teeth still. But then I realized that Dorie had you parboil it in an excess of water. And then rinse it off! Why would you let all that starchy goodness just go down the drain?!?

In a second, I had already decided to ditch making Dorie's recipe to the letter. I would not parboil in an excess of water, I would only use the smallest amount necessary - adding it a little at a time, a la risotto. Then, if I misjudged and had too much water, I would drain it, but I was not going to rinse. No sirree. I want that starch.


On to qualm number two. Chocolate. In my rice pudding. Excuse me, but BLECH. I like vanilla rice puddings, but my all time favorite is a rum raisin rice pudding. Seriously, even people who hate rice pudding love this stuff. (Hello! It has RUM!) So I puttered around my apartment kitchen (and by puttered, I mean I turned around in a circle. I've got a tiny ass kitchen). In the end, I came up with: a bag of sweetened flake coconut from the Florida Pie for TWD and a bag of frozen sweet cherries from the cobbler for TWD. Seriously, this TWD thing has left me with the most random assortment of things in my kitchen. Oh yeah, and I realized that I had some scraped out vanilla bean pods that could be repurposed as well.

And that is how I ended up with a Coconut Cherry Rice Pudding. It's purple, perfumed with vanilla, and tropically coconutty. Oh yeah, and it's tasty. That's key. After making it, I put some into my cute little dishes that I could eat it straight out of, and the rest into mini brioche molds, in hopes that I could unmold it and have a fun little starfish shaped rice pudding. Unfortunately, this is a softer pudding, so that... umm... didn't go so hot. No pictures of the carnage, thankyouverymuch.


Coconut Cherry Rice Pudding

1/8 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup water
1 cup coconut milk
5/8 cup whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean (I used a pre-scraped one, it still has a lot of flavor)
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons sweetened shred coconut
1/8 cup chopped cherries (I used frozen ones and cut each into 8 pieces - about 6 of them)

Bring the water and arborio rice to a boil. Let boil uncovered for 10 minutes, adding water if necessary. Drain any excess water off and set rice aside in a separate bowl. (Dorie's recipe has you rinse the rice, but as I said, I can't stand to wash away all that starchy goodness)

Pour coconut milk and milk into the same pot, stirring in the sugar and vanilla beans. Bring to a boil then add the parboiled rice and coconut. Lower heat to low and let it bubble away for 20-25 minutes. Add the cherries, and boil until the rice is done. As Dorie says, you'll see the rice floating underneath the top layer of milk, but it will be quite soupy. And as she said, it thickens up quite nicely in the fridge. Fish out the vanilla bean and pour the pudding into individual serving dishes. Press plastic film over the top to prevent a skin from forming and chill at least overnight.

Makes two servings.

PS: To those of you who put up with my blah-ness last week, a million thanks. You have no idea how nice it was to see so many comments saying such nice things. What a wonderful pick-me-up, and one more reason why I don't understand when people say you can't truly get to know people through blogs. After such thoughtful messages, I had only gratitude that I decided, 11 months ago, to jump into this world.

Last Week: Kugelhopf
Next Week: Thanksgiving Twofer Pie

77 comments:

Judy said...

Blue rice pudding. How cool is that! At first I thought it was the lighting, but as I read on, I realized it was the fruit. Sounds like a great combination.

n.o.e said...

Seeing as I'm obsessed with All Things Cherry (I was snacking on dried cherries as I linked on your blog!) this sounds really wonderful. And I'm glad to know I don't HAVE to rinse the rice next time - thanks for blazing that trail!
Nancy

Cristine said...

You are so very creative!!! Great job!

Mevrouw Cupcake said...

I love your purply-blue rice pudding! Gorgeous!

Di said...

Great way to use up those leftover ingredients! I may have to try the rum raisin version--maybe it will convince me to like rice pudding. =)

Laura said...

I thought the same thing about rinsing the rice becasue I wondered how 1/4 cup of rice was ever supposed to absorb over 3 cups of milk. But, alas, I followed the recipe to a T and ended up with rice soup. I fixed it, but I wish I has read the TWD comments first!

Your cherry coconut combo sounds wonderful and I love the color! Pretty neat :-) That rum raisin version is way too tempting and so I'm going to have to try that next!

Madam Chow said...

Great idea, and I'm going to avoid par boiling next time. I made mine with almond milk and had soup.
Madam Chow
http://www.mzkitchen.com

Jules Someone said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it. Did you have to cook it for less time because you had more starch?

Anne said...

I love your changes to the recipe! I'm with in the "weird things leftover" department. It looks like it came together great! :)

Tracey said...

Wow, you are certainly creative! The pudding looks great!

Steph said...

I like your twist on this week's challenge!

Heather said...

I love it! Who wouldn't want purple rice pudding...I bought the rice and the chocolate but never quite got to it...life seems to be getting in the way. I did get to Dorie this week just the wrong recipe!

Looking forward to some pie next week baby!!!

Teanna said...

Mmmm, rum raisin rice pudding sounds so good, but your cherry rice pudding is awesome! That looks so great!

Jamie said...

Your pudding sounds delicious! I wish I liked rice pudding!

Peggy said...

Blue pudding! I like the cherry idea! You are always creative!! I was amazed that little bit of rice soaked up all that milk!

rainbowbrown said...

Good gravy lady. That sounds so good. I've never had rum raisin rice pudding. Hm, actually I had never had rice pudding before. Hm. I like it.

chocolatechic said...

What a great idea you had.

I put chocolate in mine.

Steph said...

I agree about not rinsing the rice! When everyone said they were having problems, that was one of my first thoughts. And I love your flavor combo! Jazzed up rice pudding, who could ask for more?

Sarah said...

yummy! you make me thing i should try this again...

Cathy said...

Wow, that is one wonderful sounding flavor combo! And my three year old would be all over the purple color (it's her favorite!) As usual, you have and then execute some really great ideas!

pinkstripes said...

coconut/cherry sounds delicious. YUM!

Marthe said...

Coconut and cherries: sounds like a great combo!!

P.S. Have you already seen my Snterklaas giveaway??

Katrina said...

Love the cherry/coconut combo. Great job. Glad you changed it up to be a pudding you'd like to eat! I agree, chocolate doesn't belong in rice pudding.

Isabelle said...

un riz au lait bleu !fallait y penser :)

Kayte said...

Oh, I'm usually right on board with all your little add-ins, eagerly awaiting each week to see what you will choose...and I do like coconut and cherries, but I am thinking there are so many other really good ways to use those...LOL. Not a fan of the rice pudding...but am very happy that you are as you should be happy! Most surprising thing: you didn't pick chocolate in any way shape or form...see, I just knew there was a chance we could be friends...LOL.

Matt's Kitchen said...

OK, finally someone who agrees with me. I was thinking the same thing. Why use Arborio when you are just going to rinse all of the starch away? Congratulations for not being a follower. I went against my instincts and parboiled away all of that creamy starch!

AmyRuth said...

I think the perfum of coconut milk in a warm pan is heavenly. Love it! I wondered about rinsing off that starch (creaminess) as well. But like a lamb to the slaughter, I followed the instructions as written both book and blog. It turned out just fine. In other recipes I've read, Pierre Herme and Regan Daley there is no parboiling. So ??? Either way your rice pudding really sounds delish. I would love to try it and a neat quality of rice pudding is its versatility. Go Girl!! Thanks for stopping by and so glad your back to your "tricks!" : )
AmyRuth

leanne said...

Oh I didn't rinse my rice either! Your pudding looks so yummy! I will have to try your recipe.

Melissa said...

Coconut and cherry... my you are creative! And now I've learned that there's no need to rinse the rice. Thanks for posting your variation!

April said...

Coconut milk sounds like a fabulous idea. Another great job, as always!

singletoncooks said...

Hahaha! I laughed so hard about wanting to taste the individual rice grains because, yes!, you still have your teeth! I never understand the desire that some people have (my parents) to cook things down to mush! Love the cherry idea too. I kept wishing that I had some raspberries or some tart fruit that would balance out the richness of the pudding.

Ninny said...

What a cool idea to do cherry and coconut. Rice pudding is new to me and I am excited to try different versions now.

Fit Chick said...

Looks yummie! I might actually try yours, the coconut cherry sounds so good.

Tammy said...

I agree re: washing the starch off. I think that is maybe why it was runny for some poeple

happytummy said...

1. i hear you on the goodness of rum raisin rice pudding. it was my first initiation into rice pudding, and will always remain my fave :)

2. ok, the coconut cherry combo? genius!! love the idea of creamy coconut with tart cherry. not to mention--it's beautiful!

Tami said...

Gotta say that you win for the most fabulous colored rice pudding. It looks great! I bet those two flavors together were terrific.

I didn't think that I would like the chocolate rice pudding but I did. Thanks for the nice comments on my blog!

Sabrina said...

Okay you are awesome. And your rice pudding looks good enough to eat... and that is saying a lot, cause I don't like rice pudding!

Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Satisfying my Sweet Tooth said...

LOVE coconut and cherries. Must have been tasty! Way to use your leftovers!

Jodie said...

Ooh, fun variation. I might even eat this rice pudding flavor!

kim said...

yum! nothing like a little flavor improvisation, and this is the perfect palette for it :) good to know about the parboiling... i've never worked with this kind of rice before, so it's all new to me!

Beth G. said...

YUM!! Cherry coconut is fabulously creative and sounds super yummy!! I love it!

Candy said...

It looks smurfilicous! (That means very, very tasty!) Very innovative.

SUGAR B said...

That is awesome! I am digging the color of that pudding! Awesome job and thanks for sharing! :)

Pamela said...

I still have a bunch of frozen cherries left over too, but they probably won't be going into rice pudding anytime soon! Great job. What a creative twist on the recipe! Keep smiling, Caitlin!

Amber said...

I was thinking you had added blueberry, but cherry? Mmm. You are very creative with what is available also.

Carol Peterman said...

We were supposed to rinse the rice? I really need to start reading the instructions more carefully. Last week I missed the part about sprinkling granulated sugar on the Kugelhopf and just used powdered sugar. Your pud looks lovely!

Liliana said...

Your rice pudding looks delicious! Great idea not parboil the rice.

Liliana said...

P.S. I love the new look of you blog!

the Spaz said...

I did a double take when I saw the first photo, but after reading the post, it sounds like such a delicious combo. Go you, for being creative and using up odds and ends. :)

Jacque said...

Way to get creative with the leftovers! It looks and sounds delish :)

The Food Librarian said...

Love the color! Looks wonderful and cheerful!

Linda said...

Nice improvisation in the kitchen! Your pantry sounds like mine, with assorted remnant ingredients begging to be used.

Natashya said...

I agree about the starch. I didn't know why we were washing it off when it seemed integral to rice pudding. Also chocolate - it worms it's way into everything. Not in my rice pudding!
You came up with a wonderful combo, I bet it was delicious.

Cakelaw said...

Cherry coconut - just like the middle of a cherry ripe- yum! A great way to use up some random ingredients.

Eunice said...

HOW AWESOME DOES THIS GET!?!
you're my hero.
officially.

Jess said...

Although I was a miserable failure at chemistry in high school, I also wondered why we were wasting all that starch parboiling and draining the rice - but unlike you, I wimped out and did what I was told. Your version looks delicious, and I will NOT rinse next time!

Kait said...

I know I'm supposed to comment on this post, but I can't get over your new layout - it's awesome! I've been meaning to mix things up a bit and go for a more sophisticated look at my blog - this is awesome motivation.

Kimberly Johnson said...

Your pudding looks delicious! I must have missed the rinsing step! I only drained mine.

I love love love the new look of your blog!

Rachel said...

Ok even though I don't like rice pudding, coconut cherry does sound pretty good....

Carmen Cooks said...

Yum ... I love the coconut cherry variation! Those are great flavors. I agree, I was not crazy about the idea of chocolate rice pudding!

Amanda said...

I love your new background!!!! AND, this recipe. Maybe I would like this better than the plain vanilla.....

The Spiteful Chef said...

Dude. I was totally pissed off about wasting the starch, too. But I didn't think to defy the laws of Greenspan (insert failing economy joke here). I feel like a mindless drone now. I like the pink pudding, and pretty much anything else pink.

What's for Supper? said...

Great idea on the cherries. I think my husband would have loved your version. He loves cherries!

dharmagirl said...

what gorgeous color, and nifty flavor combinations! thanks for sharing your experiment:)

TeaLady said...

Blue pudding!!! How gauche!!! Sounds good. I will have to try this one day. I would never have thought of THOSE ingredients. Good for you. Nice pics.

Christina said...

I like your changes! Cherry and coconut is a combination I don't see often.

The standard rice porridge recipe I make (it's not really desserty) calls for the rice to be cooked in the proper amount of water before adding the milk and letting it simmer, but I really can't imagine it's worth the trouble of parboiling it.

Amanda said...

Great use of old TWD leftovers. Such an interesting combo and I bet delicious!

Shari@Whisk: a food blog said...

Sounds like you put your re-purposed food to good use! Very creative.

Mary Ann said...

I love what you did with this recipe. I was so excited not to use any butter this week as well.
I took your advice and did not rinse my rice when I made this again last night and boy, was it better!

Melissa said...

you crack me up! You're so silly and I love reading your posts!! Nice job, btw! I'm not a rice puddin' kinda girl, so I sat this one out. You did it proud, though! ~Melissa @bakingasweetlife.com

AllisonWonderland said...

Thanks for the comment, I'm glad someone read it :) You're recipe sounds very yummy , I may have to give this rice a second try!

Liz said...

I love it! I totally have whole cupboards full of random spices and ingredients from various baking projects--it's so nice to use them up occasionally!

Karleen said...

Haha TWD has left my pantry full of random ingredients as well. Corn meal and caro chips, anyone?? Love it!

Heather B said...

Love the blue rice pudding!! My favorite rice pudding is a rum raisin too!

Sandy Smith said...

Good idea not to rinse the starch off. Even as I was rinsing I was thinking, "Why am I doing this? What's going to bind this stuff?" So my pudding was pretty loose.

Also I LOVE cherries, so you have a real winner here, as far as I'm concerned!

jillbert said...

Thanks for the modified recipe - I wanted to try a coconut version. I'm also happy to see another raisin fan out there! By the way, my Winter in Wisconsin pictures are from Richfield, which is about 35 miles northwest of Milwaukee.

Jaime said...

wow, coconut cherry sounds great! maybe i would like that better than chocolate....