Rice pudding with honey soaked fruit and pistachios
- November 2018
- Serves 8-10
- Hands-on time 20 min, cooking time 45-60 min, plus resting
Rice pudding is a traditional Middle Eastern dessert. This recipe is made with coffee making this a grown-up treat. The sweetness of the honey-soaked fruit cuts through the creamy richness perfectly.
Serve it warm or make ahead and serve at room temperature in the Middle Eastern way.
- 26.6g (15.8g saturated)
- 77.5g (61.2g sugars)
For the rice pudding
- 1 litre whole milk (for a rich finish use gold top), plus extra – optional
- 400ml double cream
- 200g pudding rice
- 200g light brown soft sugar
- 150ml freshly brewed espresso (from a coffee machine – or use instant espresso powder)
- 2 tsp vanilla bean paste
For the soaked fruit
- 150ml clear honey
- Finely grated zest and juice 2 oranges
- 1 long cinnamon stick, or 2 short
- 400g mixed dried fruit, roughly chopped (we used sultanas, apricots and figs)
- Handful unsalted pistachios, roughly chopped, to garnish
- Put all the rice pudding ingredients in a large heavy-based saucepan, bring to a gentle simmer and cook, stirring often, for 45-60 minutes until the rice is al dente. Keep an eye on it once it starts to thicken up as it can catch on the bottom of the pan. If the rice starts to dry out before it’s ready, add extra milk.
- Meanwhile, put the honey, 200ml water, orange zest and juice in a pan over a medium heat. Add the cinnamon stick(s) and bring to a simmer. Add the fruit, reduce the heat and cook for 2-3 minutes, letting the mixture steam but not bubble. Turn off the heat and leave the fruit to steep until the rice is ready.
- Once the rice pudding is al dente – cooked but still with a little bite – turn off the heat, cover the top with a piece of cling film directly touching the surface to stop a skin forming, then leave it to rest. Drain the fruit in a sieve set over a bowl to catch the juices. Set the fruit aside and return the juices to the pan. Bring to the boil and reduce for around 10 minutes until syrupy. To serve, divide the rice pudding among bowls. Top with a couple of spoonfuls of the dried fruit, a generous drizzle of the syrup and a scattering of pistachios.
The pudding tastes sweeter when it’s warm than when it cools, so you may want to reduce the sugar in the rice to 150g if you’re planning to serve the dish warm. Keep leftover fruit in an airtight container for up to a week and serve spooned over yogurt, porridge or ice cream.
Cool, cover and chill the pudding up to 24 hours ahead. Reheat or bring up to room temperature to serve – although it’s great fridge-cold too.
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