I’ve been on a bit of a compulsive blackberry picking drive recently; I can’t seem to take the dog for a walk without coming home with a bagful of blackberries, it just seems a shame to walk past the heavily laden brambles without at least nabbing a few… I have made jam (recipe coming soon!) and I’ve been eating an awful lot of blackberry compote, which is delicious with yoghurt or porridge, but I think I enjoyed it most when I paired it with this creamy, comforting coconut and cardamom rice pudding.
I have actually weirdly been craving rice pudding for a couple of months now, but it just seemed a bit wrong to make it in the Summer, to me rice pudding is an Autumn and Winter dish (I prefer to eat it hot), so I waited patiently until the weather began to cool down, and as soon as I felt a chill in the air I took my chance. I decided to make the pudding with coconut milk rather than regular milk as coconut works really well with blackberry, I also threw in some cardamom pods for a bit of warming spice and added a star anise to the blackberry compote. As an unintentional side effect of using coconut milk, the pudding also happens to be vegan and lactose free as a bonus.
Rice pudding is very versatile, it can be eaten hot or cold, though I do prefer it hot, and it not only works as a pudding, but is also great as a snack or for breakfast as it is not overly sweet. If you do what I did and layer the rice pudding and compote up in a jar and pop the lid on it becomes instantly portable (remember to take a spoon….), so you can easily take it to work or as part of a school lunch. I make my rice pudding on the hob rather than baking it in the oven as I prefer the texture, it also doesn’t take anywhere near as long to cook that way and both the rice pudding and blackberry compote are very easy to make. You can replace the blackberries with any other berry if you like, just adjust the sugar to taste.
If you’re a fan of creamy, fruity breakfasts then this Coconut Oatmeal With Blueberry Compote, Millet Porridge With Honey Glazed Plums, Breakfast Parfait and Caramelised Apple Oatmeal will be right up your street.
- 100g (1/2 cup) pudding rice
- 800ml (two cans) (3.5 cups) coconut milk
- 250ml (1 cup) water
- 75g (1/3 cup + 1tbsp) sugar
- pinch salt
- 3 cardamom pods, bruised
- milk as needed
- 250g (9oz) blackberries
- 25g (2 tbsp) sugar
- 1 tbsp water
- 1 star anise (optional)
- 1 tsp cornflour (cornstarch) mixed with a splash of water (optional)
- Place the rice, coconut milk, water, sugar, salt and cardamom pods in a pan and bring to the boil over a medium-high heat then reduce the heat to low and cook at a gentle simmer for 35-40 minutes until the rice is tender and the liquid has reduced; stir the mixture regularly, especially towards the end of cooking.
- Once the pudding is at your preferred texture, remove the pan from the heat and discard the cardamom pods, pour into a bowl, cover and leave to cool then place in the fridge to chill. If, once the pudding has chilled, you find it to be too thick, stir in a little milk to loosen.
- To make the compote, place the blackberries, sugar, water and star anise in a pan and bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer for about 10 minutes until the blackberries have broken down.
- If you find the compote to be too liquidy (bear in mind that it will thicken a bit as it cools though), stir in a tsp of cornflour mixed with a splash of water then bring the compote back up to the boil and simmer for a couple of minutes until thickened. Discard the star anise.
- Serve the rice pudding hot or cold with the compote (also hot or cold).