A savoury porridge, all about using that leftover rice and making an easy meal. It's comfort, family food - one of those one pot wonders. We are all about it.
Last week it was Matt's birthday, so we did lots of entertaining and we ended up with lots of leftover rice. And I mean lots. Also, we are in the middle of spring, which means we are in cabbage, garlic, onion and herb land - with not a whole lot else growing - broad beans are at their end, winter's greens like chard and kale have basically all bolted and been picked clean and all of our root vegetables like turnips, beets and carrots have been pulled.
These two factors combined with the fact we just got a GIANT mandolin (see photo below) meant it was time to make this dish - inspired by our Danish cousin Cammy, who insisted cabbage and milk was a great combination. She was right.
PS. When Matt ordered said mandolin, he thought he was ordering one that was about 30cm. And then this arrived. The biggest mandolin in the world.
On fermenting rice
This recipe was designed to be made to use up your leftover rice. But if you need to make some fresh, this is how we recommend you do it, to ferment your rice before cooking it:
Place brown rice in a pot and cover with the amount of water you would cook it in (*note: make sure it's unchlorinated water, otherwise fermentation can't occur). Add 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar (or any other acid) per 2 cups of rice and allow it to soak for 8-24 hours at room temperature.
Place your pot of rice and water on the stove and cook as you usually would.
Why ferment rice?
- It deactivates "anti nutrients" (like phytic acid) which inhibit your absorption of all of the good nutrients.
- It begins to digest the complex carbohydrates, making it more easily digestible for your body.
- It allows more vitamins and minerals to be available to your body.
- And it makes it taste even better.
Time 30 minutes / Serves 2 big meals, 4 small meals
You know what, sometimes we make a dish and it tastes delicious, but it doesn't always look amazing as a finished product. So I really do apologise for the slight ugliness of this dish (of which Matt insisted was important to point out), it makes me a little bit sad because it's so delicious. I promise it's good.
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 onion, diced into small pieces
500g (1/4 head) cabbage, finely shredded
750ml (3 cups) milk (full cream, raw where possible)
2 cups of cooked brown rice
crushed, toasted walnuts to serve
nutmeg to serve
grated parmesan or cheddar cheese to serve
salt and pepper to taste
Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a large fry pan and saute spices, pepper, garlic and onion on medium heat.
Add cabbage and a big splash of water and steam-fry for a few minutes.
Add milk to the pan, cover with a lid and bring to the boil. Then turn down the heat, add the rice and simmer for 15 minutes.
Remove the lid, bring back to a rolling boil for a second time then leave the pan to simmer uncovered for another 5 minutes, until the liquid has thickened.
Turn the heat off. Add salt and pepper to taste, stir in cheese, and top with toasted walnuts and a sprinkle of nutmeg to serve.
PS. We have been named finalists for the 2015 Australian Sustainability Awards, in two categories: Sustainable communities and sustainable education. We are so thankful!
We head to Sydney tomorrow to present on our little business and to see who will win. Good luck all.