Pear, Rooibos Tea & Madagascar Vanilla
This recipe is a delightful combination of ripe fruity pears, rich earthy Rooibos tea and full bodied pure Madagascar vanilla.
You will want to use ripe, but not over ripe pears for this recipe. Under ripe pears will not give your pudding as full a flavour or sweetness. I prefer using Bartlett or Forelle pears (Costco often has these). They have a smooth buttery texture when cooked and aren't grainy at all like Anjou pears. If you have never tried Rooibos tea it is worth exploring. This herbal tea originates from South Africa. To learn more about this unique tea visit. It is a caffeine free red tea leaf. As a steeped tea, people either tend to love it or dislike it completely. It has an interesting earthiness to it. Even people that aren't a fan of Rooibos tea often like my Rooibos infused flavours because it blends so well with many fruits while complementing the fruit flavours. As far as the vanilla goes, I use a pure Madagascar Vanilla preserved in alcohol, for this recipe. The alcohol keeps the vanilla flavours 'true'. Pure vanilla maintains it's flavour better than artificial vanilla, when you cook with them. I add the vanilla near the end, once the sauces are fully cooked, but before I add the cooked Calrose rice in. I have made many 'poached pear' flavours using various poaching ingredients. We will be poaching the pears in the Rooibos tea for this recipe.
What you will need:
2 medium sized pots with lids, measuring cups and spoons or kitchen scales (if you have one). a wire whisk (if you have one), a metal slotted spoon or wooden spoon, an immersion or upright blender, a cutting board and kitchen knife, a heat proof/food safe container with lid, a kitchen strainer over a bowl
32 oz / 2 lbs ripe Bartlett pears
1 + 13 oz of coconut milk (14 oz in a regular sized can)
15 oz Calrose medium grain rice
12 oz brown sugar
3 prepackaged Rooibos tea bags
1 1/2 tsp pure Madagascar vanilla (or other pure vanilla)
Wash, core and roughly chop the pears, leave skin on. Place in a medium sized pot with 1 cup of water, 12 oz of brown sugar and empty the contents of 2 of the Rooibos tea bags (discard the bag). Set the pot over a medium heat and allow it to come to a medium boil, while covered.
Rinse the Calrose rice in water and strain. Repeat 2 more times. Set aside to drain.
Once the pear mixture comes to a medium boil, reduce the heat to a simmer and allow it to continue to cook until the pears are soft, (when you can easily insert a fork into them) . Once they are cooked to this point, using a slotted spoon, remove about a 1/2 cup of the pears and set aside to cool.
Using an immersion or upright blender, puree the fruit sauce until smooth. Chop into smaller pieces, the reserved 1/2 cup of poached pears. Add them back into the pureed fruit. This will give the whole pudding more texture and little pops of added colour.
Remove 1 oz of coconut milk from the can and set aside. Add the remaining coconut milk to the pear mixture. Fill the same can with water and add it in as well. Allow the fruit sauce to come back to a medium boil.
In a second medium sized pot, place 30 oz of water and the 1 oz of reserved coconut milk. Bring the pot to a medium boil, covered. Once it boils, add the rinsed and drained Calrose rice. Stir to ensure that the rice isn't stuck to the bottom of the pot. Reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting. Cover the pot and set a timer for 20 minutes.
Once the fruit sauce has reached a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer. Add the emptied contents of the last Rooibos tea bag (discard the bag) and the 1 1/2 tsp of pure Madagascar vanilla. Cover the pot and allow the contents to steep on a low heat setting.
After the 20 minutes cooking time, turn off the heat for the rice, keep covered and allow it to continue cooking and absorbing more liquid for an additional 10 minutes.
After the 10 minutes rest, add the hot cooked Calrose rice to the fruit sauce. Using a wire whisk incorporate the cooked rice into the sauce, breaking up any clumps of cooked rice. Allow the pudding to completely heat through once again.
Empty the hot Pear Rooibos & Vanilla Rice Pudding into a heat proof/food safe container and allow it to cool on the counter or on a cooling rack, covered, for 15 to 20 minutes. Now you are ready to sample your delicious hot rice pudding or you can place it in the fridge to cool completely.
The fruit rice pudding will keep in the fridge, covered, for up to 2 weeks. Or, you can portion and package your pudding into smaller freezer grade containers to enjoy at a later time. It will keep for months in the freezer.
Consult our How to Freeze and Thaw our rice puddings post for best results. Consult the Simply Fruit Rice Puddings Basic Ingredients post and the Basic Cooking Instructions post for more tips, tricks and information on how to make your own fruit rice puddings.