The combination of peaches and cream is one of the most mouthwatering desserts of all time, so when these colorful fruits take over the markets each summer, I naturally start thinking of ways to use them in my healthy and creamy dessert creations.
The first thing that comes to mind when I think of creamy desserts is arroz con leche, which has to be one of the most universally-loved desserts, don't you think?
That's how I came up with this seasonal arroz con leche enhanced by the taste, color, and aroma of summer's best stone fruits: peaches, plums and apricots. Since I lead an almost-vegan lifestyle, my spin on this traditional Latin American dessert is made with coconut milk instead of dairy milk.
This recipe calls for grade B maple syrup because it has a stronger maple taste; you can substitute grade A maple syrup if you prefer.
Use as little or as much fruit as you like (I've given a range in the instructions), and if you can't find these specific fruits for any reason, feel free to replace them with all the sweet and juicy berries also available at this time of the year.
1/2 to 1 medium peach, chopped (about 3/4 cup to 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 to1 medium plum, chopped (about 1/3 to 2/3 cup)
1 cup arborio rice
1 can (about 15 ounces) regular coconut milk (not light)
1/2 cup grade B maple syrup
2 cups water
1/2 cup dried, unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup pistachios
Chop all the fruit and put in a small or medium-sized pan together with the rice, coconut milk, maple syrup and 2 cups water.
Mix well and bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat to medium-low, and simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring with a spoon every now and then, adding more water (1 cup at a time) if needed. Don't let it dry out too much. The consistency should be creamy the whole time, even when it's ready, as the rice will keep absorbing the liquid once it's done.
While the rice is cooking, toast the unsweetened coconut and pistachios in a pan over low heat, stirring for about 2 minutes.
Serve warm or cold, and sprinkled with toasted coconut and pistachios.
Store leftovers in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.