Have you been following the petition to Kraft (watch the short and informative video!), asking them to stop using artificial dyes in their foods? While I don’t eat Macaroni and Cheese, I’m still alarmed by the food dyes—they’re not just in Mac and Cheese (check out this list of unusual places where dyes pop up!)! They are in everything it seems, especially in foods marketed for kids—even in some children’s medicines—how crazy is that? And they are linked to a whole myriad of health issues including hyper activity in children, asthma, eczema, and even cancer. They require warning labels in the UK and other European countries, and are flat out banned in Norway and Austria.
I’ve stopped using artificial food dyes and do my best to avoid foods that contain them. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t enjoy some fun, naturally colored foods! So when I heard about green bamboo rice I knew I needed to find it and make some rice pudding for St. Patrick’s Day! I based this recipe on an old Ellie Krieger recipe I used to make, but switched up some of the flavors a little bit, and pumped up the green with some Matcha Green Tea. Matcha is a little pricey, but it goes a long way—I’ve had the same bag for a year and I still have a lot left!
I’ve always liked rice pudding, or as my Dad always called it R-pud. The rice pudding my mom made when I was a kid had a really firm texture and I always really liked it. But this one is totally different—softer and creamy, and not too sweet—you could totally eat it for breakfast too (ok, I ate my mom’s sweet rice pudding for breakfast growing up too!)! It’s great on it’s own, and would also be nice with some fresh fruit like mangoes or strawberries.
Please excuse the grayish cast to the photos—this is the sunniest it’s been in a week (and it was raining while I took pictures!). Just look at my 5 day forecast—grey, grey, and more grey 🙁 Definitely time for a cozy bowl of warm rice pudding!
Coconut Green Tea Rice Pudding
2 c bamboo rice (I found this in a large Asian grocery store nearby, you can use Arborio if you can’t find it)
3 c water
2 cans light coconut milk (to make this extra creamy, add up to 1 more cup of non dairy milk or water)
½ c maple syrup
½ T matcha green tea powder
1 T vanilla
Bring rice and water to a boil in an oven safe sauce pan. Let water evaporate until there is no visible water and turn to low. Cover and allow to simmer for 5-10 more minutes, until rice is almost done, but still al dente.
While rice is cooking, mix maple syrup and green tea together to form a paste. Add coconut milk and whisk to combine. Pour milk mixture over the rice. Cover with a lid and place into oven. Allow to cook for 45 minutes.
Remove from oven and stir in vanilla. The pudding will be thick, and will absorb even more liquid as it cools.
To serve, scoop the pudding into individual cups and pour more non-dairy milk over top. Garnish with toasted coconut—the Dang! Coconut flakes are delicious with this! (If it firms up too much in the fridge, warm it up and mix little more milk in.)