As the weather is changing, so too does the type of food our bodes need. In the summer months, lighter cold smoothies, juices, yoghurt bowls are all wonderful to start the day with, but as the colder months roll in something more nourishing and warming is often required.
As much as I love oats and grains, they can be overdone. I am a championing fan of porridge, but a glut of it every morning gets a bit old. So I have been seeking out inspiration from new grains. In light of a recent visit to a central London restaurant called Nopi (another in the Ottolengthi group) I have created a dish based around Chinese black rice. A creamy black nutty porridge alternative. Its cereal-free, thus gluten free. It also just so happens to be vegan and sugar free, completely by accident… wouldn’t you look at that.
It might sound completely odd, the idea of eating rice porridge for breakfast, but I promise you, it is delicious. The longer, lower and slower you cook it, the more it breaks down and becomes a pleasing thick porridge texture. If you can find black rice, try a Japanese short grain brown rice, or Arborio risotto Rice.
The reason I have opted for light coconut milk is because the thicker variety is very rich, when I can I actually cook the rice in coconut water and the coconut pulp for Cocoface coconuts. Using coconut straight from the nut is the way I like to eat it, it is at its freshest this way. I you can I urge you to try this recipe by adding the water of a full coconut to a blender with 2-3 big scoops of the flesh and cooking the rice in the smooth creamy coconut mixture. If you need to, add a little extra water when cooking the rice. You can save the rest of the flesh for smoothies, healthy ice cream alternatives or even just to snack on.
Coconut Black Rice Porridge Recipe
- 1 cup Chinese black rice
- 400ml light coconut milk, plus extra to serve
- 4 tbs maple syrup
Soak the rice overnight in cold water, before using. This with reduce the cooking time.
When ready to cook, Throughly wash the rice in a sieve under the cold tap.
Place in a saucepan with the coconut water and pulp, or coconut milk (whichever you are using) and cook for 30 minutes, with a lid on the saucepan. If need be add a little extra water whilst the rice is cooking.
Sweeten before serving, to taste, swirl through a little extra coconut milk and scatter over the goji berries