Pear & Ground Cherry Fruit Rice Pudding
This flavor marries the sweet & buttery ripe Bartlett pear with the slightly punchy taste of Ground Cherry. The tart is nicely balanced out but not overpowered. Did you know that Ground Cherries, aka Golden Berry (Costco) and Physallis are all the same fruit?
They are easy to grow in our region and are readily available to purchase at our Ottawa Farmers' Markets too. If you've never tried one, I would suggest giving it a go. If you like making my fruit rice puddings, I would doubly recommend trying them. They complement so many different fruits. They aren't as tart as rhubarb to cook with, but they are just as versatile.
What you will need:
2 medium sized pots with lids, a strainer that fits inside of a bowl, a long metal spoon, a rubber spatula, a wire whisk (if you have one), an immersion or upright blender, measuring spoons, cups or a kitchen scale (if you have one), a heat proof/food safe container with lid, a small knife & cutting board, a medium sized bowl
24 oz Bartlett pears
13 oz Calrose medium grain rice
13 oz light brown sugar or organic
12 oz ground cherries/golden berries/physallis
1 + 7 oz coconut milk
1/4 tsp ground dry ginger
Place the Calrose rice into the strainer that sits inside of a bowl. Rinse under running water and strain. Repeat 2 more times. Set aside to drain.
If the ground cherries still have their dry sheaths attached, remove them. Place them and the whole Bartlett pears into a small bowl. Using a light dish soap rinse and drain the fruit.
On a small cutting board, cut the pears in half lengthwise and remove the core. Chop the pear into medium sized pieces. Keep the pear skin on the fruit.
In a medium sized pot place the chopped pear, ground cherries, 2 cups of water and 13 oz of brown sugar. Cover and place over medium heat. Cook until a fork can be easily inserted into the pears (about 15 to 20 minutes).
In a second medium sized pot place 32 oz water and 1 oz of coconut milk. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to the lowest setting. Add the rinsed and drained Calrose rice. Stir to ensure that the rice isn't sticking to the bottom of the pot. Cover and set a timer for 20 minutes.
Once the pears are soft, remove a 1/2 cup of pear pieces and set aside. Using an immersion blender or upright, puree the remainer of the sauce. Add 7 oz of coconut milk, 7 oz of water and 1/4 tsp of dry ground ginger. Bring the fruit sauce back to a medium boil.
Chop the reserved pear pieces into small bite sized pieces and add them back into the pureed fruit sauce. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to cook until the rice has finished cooking.
After the 20 minutes cooking time, turn off the rice heat and allow the rice to continue to cook and to absorb more liquid for an additional 10 minutes. Keep pot covered.
After the 10 minutes rest time, add the hot cooked Calrose rice into the hot fruit sauce. Blend together well using a wire whisk. Break up any clumps of hot cooked rice. Bring the whole Ground Cherry & Pear Fruit Rice Pudding back up to a medium boil.
Turn off the heat and empty the hot rice pudding into a heat proof/food safe container. Cover and allow it to cool for 15 to 20 minutes on a counter or a wire cooling rack.
Now, you can place it in the fridge to cool completely, covered. It will keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. You may also choose to portion and package some of the fruit rice pudding into freezer grade containers to enjoy at a later time. They can be frozen for a few months.
Consult our How to Freeze & Thaw blog post for best results. Consult our Simply Fruit Rice Puddings: Basic Ingredients post and our Basic Cooking Techniques blog posts for more tips and tricks on cooking your very own fruit rice pudding. Enjoy!
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