"I think it's nice that there are all different kinds of lunches and breakfasts and dinners and snacks. I think eating is nice." – Albert from Bread and Jam for Frances, by Russell C. Hoban
I was peering into the cabinet the other day while pondering breakfast ideas and I noticed I had a lot of rice. It took a minute for me to remember that rice pudding is the ultimate breakfast food containing rice. I was a bit sleepy.
Looking around on the internet, I saw a few recipes (like this one) that had eggs, milk and a lot of hassle. I remember my mom making something relatively simple, but incredibly tasty. I wrote her an email, and sure enough, she sent me the outline for an apple-juice based vegan rice pudding.
The is adapted from Mary Estella’s Natural Foods Cookbook many years ago. My mom likes it with leftover rice, preferably short grain brown, which swells up like risotto with this preparation.
It took me a couple days to actually get around to making it, but it’s cooling on my counter now and it tastes delicious. Can’t wait to heat up a bit tomorrow morning for breakfast.
Note: Be careful to stir while the rice pudding is cooking with the juice and spices, or you’ll end up with a lot of badly burnt rice on the bottom of your pan. Burnt rice is one of the hardest things to clean off of pan bottoms in the world.
All-Star Vegan Rice Pudding
1 cup of regular white rice
2 cups of water
A nice amount of raisins, 1/2-1 cup, depending on preference
Lemon peel – I used a vegetable peeler to cut strips off a lemon, but you can also use a microplane style zester
(optional) Cinnamon stick or a few shakes of ground cinnamon
Other spices as desired – I used Cloves, but you could use Allspice, Nutmeg, Anise…
(optional) A few drops of Vanilla extract
(optional) Raw, dark tahini paste
In a medium-small pot, boil the water. Add rice and stir in the salt.
Cover, lower heat to a simmer and let cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the water is all gone.
It will probably bubble up at the beginning, uncovering it for a moment and lifting the pot if needed should save it from bubbling over.
After the rice is finished, fluff with a fork or a wooden spoon. If the rice on the very bottom of the pot is slightly burnt, you might want to wash the pot or use a different one for the next step. Or, you may not care.
In a pot (probably the same pot) add raisins, lemon peel and a bit of salt to the cooked rice. Add apple juice to cover.
Simmer slowly until the rice really absorbs the liquids. You can also add cinnamon stick and vanilla. When it’s all nice and mushy and absorbed (keep an eye on it, can take about 40 minutes to an hour) add of some tahini paste (if using) and eat.
Rice pudding can be kept in the fridge for a week or two (but you will probably have eaten it in much less time), and can be enjoyed hot or cold. Serving additions include peanut butter, soymilk, honey, maple syrup, granola, or some combination therein.