Thursday, July 11, 2013

Coconut Tapioca Custard with Glazed Apricots

Tapioca pudding instantly brings me back to childhood, but this version gets an adult twist from the rum, and is a bit fancier thanks to coconut milk and a decadent apricot topping.

For the custard:
  • 2 and 1/4 cups plain non-dairy milk
  • 1 cup vegan sugar
  • 2/3 cup uncooked quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 (14-ounce) cans light coconut milk
  • 2 Ener-G eggs
  • 2 tablespoons white rum
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon coconut extract
For the apricots:
  • 3/4 cup apricot preserves
  • 2 tablespoons white rum
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 10 apricots
1. To prepare the custard, combine the milk, sugar, tapioca, 1 teaspoon salt, coconut milk, and Ener-G eggs in a saucepan, whisking until blended.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly; be prepared for this step to take at least half an hour, since you are using a low heat setting. Once boiling, cook for 30 seconds, still stirring constantly, then remove from heat and stir in 2 tablespoons rum and the vanilla and coconut extracts.

Note: The custard will be quite thick at the end, almost heavy to stir, and the tapioca will have expanded, as shown in the photo below. 

2. Transfer the tapioca mixture to a large bowl; cover and chill for at least 2 hours.

3. To prepare the apricot topping, cut the apricots into 4 wedges each.  Combine in a skillet with the apricot preserves, 2 tablespoons rum, water, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes - the apricots should be soft.

Note: I love that apricots are so much easier to pit than their peach-y cousins, which tend to cling to their pits. Apricot pits, by contrast, practically seem eager to leap out at you once you cut the fruit in half. From there just cut into quarters and proceed with the recipe.

4. Spoon 3/4 cup custard into each of 10 dessert dishes.

5. Top each serving with 1/4 cup apricot mixture.

*Be sure to choose quick-cooking tapioca, which is granulated, not the small or large pearl varieties. If pearls are more to your liking, skip this recipe and check out the tapioca bubble teas from this month's VegNews magazine.

Nutrition Info:
10 servings (3/4 cup custard, 1/4 cup apricots), Calories 289 

Tasting Notes:
The tapioca pudding is similar in texture to any rice or tapioca pudding you've probably had before, but the coconut flavor - actually quite subtle - gives it a wonderfully tropical vibe. What makes this dish stand out though is the apricot topping, which I found surprising in the best way. The sauce has a salty, silky, lightly fruity taste and drizzles over the pudding for just the right touch to each bite. The apricots are tender but still taste fresh, not over-cooked or mushy. Delectable.


1 comment:

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