A take on the classic Southeast Asian dessert of fresh mango with coconut white sticky rice, this version has grilled pineapple served over cardamom-infused coconut black sticky rice. The consistency should be that of a loose rice pudding, though black sticky rice is always chewy. For an equally delicious dessert, use grilled banana or mango instead of pineapple.
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 cup black sticky rice, (see Note)
- 1 14-ounce can lite coconut milk
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped palm sugar (see Note) or packed brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 small ripe pineapple, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
- Step 1
- Combine water and rice in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer, cover and cook until the rice has absorbed all the water, about 20 minutes. The rice should be cooked yet still somewhat firm.
- Step 2
- Bring the coconut milk to a boil in another medium saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low, add cardamom, sugar and salt. Stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Set aside 3/4 cup of the seasoned coconut milk. Add the rice to the pan with the remaining seasoned coconut milk, return to a gentle simmer, cover and cook until the rice softens and absorbs almost all the liquid, about 15 minutes.
- Step 3
- Meanwhile, preheat grill to high. Oil the grill rack (see Tip). Grill the pineapple slices until slightly charred and softened, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a cutting board; let stand until cool enough to handle. Chop the pineapple.
- Step 4
- Serve rice and pineapple with the reserved coconut milk drizzled on top. Serve hot or at room temperature. Variation: White sticky rice can be substituted for the black sticky rice, but the cooking time in Step 1 will be 12 to 15 minutes and, in Step 2, 10 to 15 minutes. Check the rice while it's cooking to prevent scorching.
Notes: Black sticky rice, often called Forbidden rice, has a sweet, nutty taste, is high in fiber and is a good vegetarian source of iron. When cooked the brown-black rice turns a shade of purple-black. It may also be labeled “black glutinous rice” or “black sweet rice.” Sushi rice, brown rice or regular white rice cannot be substituted for black sticky rice.
Palm sugar, an unrefined sweetener similar in flavor to brown sugar, is used in sweet and savory Asian dishes. Commonly available in pod-like cakes, but is also sold in paste form at Asian markets. Store as you would other sugar.
Tip: How to oil a grill rack: Oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the rack.
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