Slow cooker coconut rice with cinnamon and dates (arroz con leche, with a twist)

After gallo pinto*, arroz con leche (rice pudding) is my favorite dish from my time in Nicaragua. For some reason, it’s taken me years to make a serious attempt at arroz con leche myself. Today turned out to be THE day, however, and I’m happy to report my results: mouthwateringly delicious! Even better, I did it all in my new slow cooker, AND I used brown rice. Boom.

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I stirred the dates into the pot because I wasn’t ready to serve the remainder of my arroz con leche right away.

 

Ingredients

1 cup short grain brown rice
1 can full fat coconut milk
water
2 tsp ground cinnamon (If you have cinnamon sticks, those are probably ideal)
6 mejool dates, pitted and chopped

optional–dried, shredded coconut to taste

Method

Put the rice and coconut milk in the slow cooker and stir. Turn it on high for 2 hours.
After about an hour, add the cinnamon and stir the concoction.
Stir every 20 minutes or so for the 2nd hour of cooking, adding a bit of water if the pudding is getting too dry. (I ended up adding about 1/3 cup of water).
Check the pudding at the 2 hour mark. In my slow cooker, this was the perfect amount of time. However, cooking time may vary, so look for a creamy texture. Most of the liquid should be absorbed. If its not, and your rice is still kind of hard, keep cooking.
When the rice is done, spoon it out into bowls/cups/mugs and top with a handful of chopped dates.

You could definitely also stir in some dried coconut as well–I intended to do this, but forgot 🙂

*Gallo pinto is a traditional Nicaraguan meal of rice and beans. Simple, I know, but sooooo good.

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