Mango Rice Pudding Recipe
Today, there were no eggs, fresh fruit or flour in the kitchen. I was able to find sugar, a can of Alphonso mango purée, sweet Asian rice and a few cups of milk. Rice pudding is my go-to dessert whenever my pantry is running on empty, and I found just the right set of ingredients to make a batch to satisfy my sweet tooth.
First, I boiled the rice in water, drained it and slowly cooked it in milk until tender. Once the rice was cooked, I sweetened and flavored it with the delicious mango purée. I couldn't stop there, so I finished the rice pudding with a little crème fraîche for extra creaminess and created a sugar crust, crème brûlée-style. All I can say is, yum!
Yields: 10 servings1 cup sweet round rice (see tips)
4 cups whole milk, warm
3/4 cup superfine sugar, to taste
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
1/8 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
6 tablespoons canned mango pulp (see tips)
1 tablespoon crème fraîche (optional)
Parboiling the rice:
Reserve 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar for the "brûléeing" later.
Wash and rinse the rice thoroughly in several water baths (about three times). Place in a large bowl, cover with water. Soak for at least 1 hour or preferably 2. Drain as much water as possible.
Fill a small pot with about 3 quarts of water. Bring to a boil. Add the rice. Bring the liquid back to a boil, then immediately lower the heat to a gentle boil. Cook for about 3 minutes. Drain the liquid from the rice using a fine mesh colander. Do NOT rinse. Discard the liquid.
Cooking rice pudding:
Rinse the pot. In the same pot, add 2-½ cups of milk. After bringing the milk to a near boil, return the rice to the pot. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for about 20-25 minutes at a gentle simmer, stirring frequently. This way the rice is cooked all the way through evenly.
The liquid should be all absorbed. Sweeten with superfine sugar. Periodically add ½ cup of remaining warm milk (add all the rest of the milk whenever the pudding thickens). Add salt and cinnamon (if used). Keep stirring the rice every now and then so that it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pot. Let simmer for another 20 minutes. Slowly add the butter and stir until fully incorporated.
Add 4 tablespoons of mango pulp. The rice pudding will turn a pretty golden color. Cook over low heat for 5 minutes until thickened and creamy. Turn off the heat. Add vanilla extract and crème fraîche (if used). Stir well. Allow the rice pudding to cool completely.
When serving, fill ramekins with the mango rice pudding, leaving about ½-inch of head space. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon of mango pulp. Cover the ramekin with more rice pudding to the top.
Sprinkle about ½ teaspoon of sugar in each ramekin, then caramelize with a culinary torch.
Mango rice pudding without the "brûlée" sugar crust.
I used Hakubai brand sweet rice. You can find sweet rice in any Korean market. If you don't have any, you can use any other round-shaped rice.
I used canned mango pulp because the mangoes are picked at the peak of ripeness, which guarantees a consistent result. You can find it in Indian markets but you can also get it online. I prefer the Alphonso mango variety, which has a less sweet, more tart flavor than the Kesar kind.
A pinch of salt brings out the flavor of the rice pudding and enhances its sweetness.
I prefer using superfine sugar. It's a fine-grained sugar and it dissolves much more quickly than regular sugar.
You can add any flavorings you want. I've tried adding lemon curd or other acidic fruit purées such as strawberry, kiwi and pineapple. Let your imagination run wild!