Serves 4-6 / The exotic flavors of cardamom and coconut make this sweet rice pudding a comforting treat to end any meal. Using brown rice, it's even healthy enough to serve as a high-protein, high-fiber snack for kids. Prep tip: If you like rice pudding very moist and creamy, drizzle with additional coconut milk.
3 cups water
1 cup brown or white basmati rice
¼ teaspoon salt
1 2-inch cinnamon stick
⅛ teaspoon whole black cardamom seeds (not whole pods)
¾ cup coconut milk
⅓ cup agave nectar
⅛ cup chopped almonds, plus more for garnish
2-3 dates, chopped
Ground cinnamon, for garnish
PER SERVING: 364 cal, 28% fat cal, 12g fat, 8g sat fat, 0mg chol, 5g protein, 62g carb, 2g fiber, 156mg sodium
1. Buy whole spices and grind small amounts with a spice grinder as needed. Whole spices retain their fragrant oils longer. Once ground, they immediately start to lose intensity.
2. Dry-toast whole or ground spices for 30 seconds before using. This step can significantly increase a dish's flavors.
3. Add a touch of sugar to balance the spices. Without it, too much of the strong, pungent flavors may take over.