Rice pudding 2.0
I ADORE rice pudding. And semolina. And blanc mange. Basically I love food. Always have done. There’s a reason why my mum had to resort to (cute) dungarees to dress me when I was little. Regular trousers wouldn’t really fit my slightly rotund tummy. Saying that I was never a fat child, just well nourished 🙂 We played outside in every weather so whatever we ate was mostly used as fuel.
A little detour
Ever since I can remember I have loved to help my mum in the kitchen. She is a fantastic cook and a fabulous hostess so I got to learn from the best!
Making dessert quickly became my thing and I was soon able to whip up sweet treats like Mousse au Chocolat, Crème Bavaroise and the likes. There were tons of mishaps (congealed chocolate, lumpy gelatin, …) along the way, especially when I wanted to impress someone. Stodgy, lumpy chocolate mousse, anyone?
Healthyfying sweet treats
Over the years my passion (obsession?!) with healthy eating grew while my love for great tasting food remained. It is my mission to healthify anything and everything without compromising on flavour. This is how this nutritionally souped up version of rice pudding came into being. The original isn’t exactly bursting with nutritional goodness… Challenge accepted!
In Thailand I came across coconut ice cream with aduki beans. Pulses in a sweet dessert?! Instant nutrient and protein boost. Genius. I was hooked.
Inspiration struck when I craved a warm bowl of creamy, gooey pure comfort one morning. Carbs without protein tend to leave me bloated and hungry again before lunch. Once I start snacking there’s no stopping me and the day quickly turns into one of those dreaded pig-out days. Not good. Using nuts for protein and fat is great if you have a fast metabolism but believe me when I say that this is something I definitely wasn’t blessed with… I therefore needed another way of adding protein without adding too much fat at the same time. Please don’t get me wrong, I am definitely not a low fat kind of girl. I just have to keep an eye on the quantity of all macro nutrients if I don’t want to resort back to the dungarees of my childhood…
- Their aforementioned protein content means they provide lovely amino acids for our muscles. Protein also keeps us feeling full for longer, reducing in between meal snacking.
- They are also a great source of molybdenum. Our clever bodies use this trace mineral for detoxification amongst other things.
- If you don’t have black beans handy any other type will do as well. Mind you, yellow lentils aren’t great in this recipe. I tried and the result was a bit meh.
- This gluten free carb option is hugely allergy friendly and provides us with lovely amounts of fiber. As you probably know by now, fibre and lots of water keep us regular. Regular BMs can additionally help to keep our cholesterol levels in check. I know I harp on about poo a lot so please excuse the toilet talk but I think we all agree that being bunged up is the PITS.
Soaking and cooking pulses
I buy dried pulses and cook them myself – so much cheaper and no nasty chemical residues from tins. It’s SO easy! Just soak a bag (or two) of pulses over night with a little salt. Drain, rinse and cook as instructed on the label. Divide into portions and freeze! I like to freeze 300g per portion, which is perfect for a batch of cookies or dinner for two! Easypeasy.
And while we are on the subject of batch cooking I suggest making a batch of this rice pudding in advance rather than in the morning. The cooking time is quite long and if you are anything like me you need a quick breakfast option that’s ready in minutes. You don’t want to eat the same thing day in, day out? No problem! Just get experimenting with different spices or even (food grade!!) essential oils! Vanilla goes with everything so use this recipe as a basis for a different breakfast every day. I love the obvious spices like cinnamon, ginger, star anise and clove. Superfood powders like maca or raw cacao are great as well. If you use food grade essential oils start with one drop to avoid over-flavoring your breakfast. Lemon or orange are fine but if you decide to be adventurous and go for lavender or bergamot you don’t want to use too much. Trust me on this one…
So! Without much further ado, here’s the recipe. It makes about 3-4 portions, depending on how hungry you are. Feel free to double up the quantities! Just make sure you store the rice pudding in a sterilised glass jar in the fridge. It keeps for about a week.
- 150g short grain brown rice (or Mochi rice)
- 200g of cooked black beans
- 300ml (or more) of water or plant based milk
- 1 vanilla pod
- 5 medjool dates, pits removed
- Generous pinch of sea salt
- Scrape the vanilla beans out of the pod and pit the dates
- Put all ingredients in a pot (or Thermomix and cook on low heat for 35 - 40 minutes depending on the cooking instructions for the rice you use
- If using a pot don't forget to stir regularly to avoid burning!
- If stored in a sterilised glas jar any leftovers should keep in the fridge for up to a week