I am not sure if you know this about me, but I hate fruit. I know, I know. It’s totally bizarre, but it is what it is. My mom says that my childhood baby sitter is to blame for this. Supposedly, she brainwashed me into hating fruit and liking chocolate in order to mask and enable her own chocolate addiction (“The baby wants chocolate!”) Frankly, I am not sure I believe my mom’s telling of this story. Fruit is so slippery, and slimy, and it always smells and tastes like it’s rotting to me. My antipathy toward fruit is so strong that I won’t even taste something that looks like a fruit. This means that, for years, I refused to try rhubarb. It’s always mixed in with strawberries, and that is just not my thing.
But, not too long ago, after painstakingly removing strawberry chunks and seeds from the corner crust of a strawberry-rhubarb pie (I can’t resist a good pie crust), I discovered that rhubarb is not so bad, after all! In fact, I kind of like it! I mean, it’s weird that a stalk tastes like that, but as long as it doesn’t remotely resemble a piece of fruit I am happy!
This recipe comes from a colleague of mine, and I like it because it can be enjoyed as breakfast, as a snack, or as a dessert. And the best part? No fruit.
Black Rice Pudding with Rhubarb and Pistachios
– Serves 4 –
For the rice pudding:
½ cup uncooked black (forbidden) rice
1 cup H20
Generous ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup coconut milk
¼ cup sugar
For the rhubarb
1 ½ cups ½ inch pieces rhubarb
2 ½ Tablespoon sugar
1 ½ teaspoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons H20
2 Tablespoons roasted, salted, shelled pistachios, roughly chopped
1. In a medium pot with a tight fitting lid, add rice, water, and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer at the lowest heat, and cover. Allow to cook 20 minutes. Rice should be very al dente.
2. Add in the coconut milk and sugar and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook 15 minutes longer. Most of the coconut milk should be absorbed and the rice should be completely cooked through but still slightly al dente. Transfer to 4 ramekins or serving dishes and allow to cool.
3. While rice is cooking, prepare the rhubarb: Add lemon juice, sugar, and water to a small saucepan with a pinch of salt. Add rhubarb and toss to coat. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and reduce to a gentle simmer. Simmer for 5-7 minutes, or until rhubarb is very tender, tossing very gently every few minutes. Transfer rhubarb to a shallow bowl and allow to cool completely.
4.Top the rice pudding with rhubarb and pistachios and serve. Enjoy!