This recipe for Black Sticky Rice in Coconut Milk (Pulut Hitam) consists of black glutinous rice cooked in sweetened coconut milk, fragranced with pandan.
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What is pulut hitam?
Pulut Hitam (also known as bubur ketan hitam) is an Indonesian dessert consisting of black glutinous rice cooked in coconut milk, sweetened with palm sugar.
The dessert has a consistency similar to rice pudding or rice porridge and is also known as black glutinous rice porridge.
What is black glutinous rice?
Black glutinous rice (also known as black sticky rice) can come in short-grain or long-grain varieties, similar to its white counterpart, which is used in sushi, mango sticky rice and lo mai gai (Chinese sticky rice in lotus leaf).
Black glutinous rice is black in color, but when cooked, turns a purplish-red hue.
The rice needs to be soaked for a period of time, preferably overnight, so that it can cook evenly.
Why you'll love this recipe
This bubur hitam recipe (Pulut Hitam) has added black beans in place of mung beans and is:
Simple to make: aside from soaking the rice overnight, the overall process to make black glutinous rice with coconut milk is easy.
Minimal in ingredients: you only need a few pantry ingredients for this dessert.
Rich and creamy: the rice porridge cooks up and the starches in the rice thickens it nicely.
Dairy-free and gluten-free: by using rice and coconut milk, this dessert is naturally dairy-free and gluten-free.
Ingredients you'll need
- black glutinous rice: long-grained black sticky rice; soaked overnight and drained
- water: or more as needed
- pandan leaf: knotted; optional, for flavor
- yellow rock sugar: you can also use gula melaka/palm sugar, or granulated sugar; adjust the amount to your taste
- coconut milk: use a canned, full-fat coconut milk for the best flavor
- sea salt: balances out the sweetness
- cooked black beans: optional; or cooked mung beans
You can find these ingredients at Asian supermarkets or grocery stores.
How to make it
Soak the black glutinous rice in water for at least 4 hours, or overnight. Drain.
Add the soaked glutinous rice into a pot and cover with water.
Add in pandan leaf and sugar.
Cover with a lid, and bring the rice to a boil over medium heat.
Prop the lid ajar slightly and reduce to a simmer.
Cook for 1 hour, or until the rice grains are tender. Check intermittently to see whether more water needs to be added.
Remove the lid and discard pandan leaf.
If there is too much water left, increase the heat to evaporate it.
Add in 2 tablespoon of coconut milk, cooked black beans (if using), and stir until incorporated.
The consistency should be like a rice pudding, thick and creamy.
How to serve
Serve Pulut Hitam warm or chilled with additional coconut milk.
In Indonesia, it is common for black sticky rice with coconut milk to be served with mung beans and bread.
How to store & reheat
Store the black sticky rice porridge in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
To reheat, cover with a lid and microwave for 1 minute, or until warmed through.
If you can't find black glutinous rice, you can replace it with long-grained white glutinous rice. It just won't give you the purple-red hue.
No pandan leaf? Add in a splash of vanilla extract. It won't be the same, but it will make the dessert taste good.
Other Southeast Asian dessert recipes you may like
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Pulut Hitam (Black Sticky Rice in Coconut Milk)
For accuracy and precision in baking recipes, use weight (metric) measurements when available.
Black sticky rice:
- 100 g (½ C) black glutinous rice soaked at least 4 hours, or overnight and drained
- 600 ml water or more as needed
- 1 pandan leaf knotted
- 40 g yellow rock sugar or gula melaka/palm sugar, granulated sugar; to taste
- 45 ml coconut milk plus extra for serving
- 140 g cooked black beans
Optional: Thickened coconut milk for serving:
- 70 ml coconut milk
- 2 teaspoon granulated sugar or palm sugar, to taste
- pinch sea salt or to taste
- 1 tablespoon cold water
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- Soak the black glutinous rice in water for at least 4 hours, or overnight. Drain.
- Add the soaked glutinous rice into a pot and cover with water.
- Add in pandan leaf and sugar.
- Cover with a lid, and bring the rice to a boil over medium heat.
- Prop the lid ajar slightly and reduce to a simmer.
- Cook for 1 hour, or until the rice grains are tender. Check intermittently to see whether more water needs to be added.
- Remove the lid and discard pandan leaf.
- If there is too much water left, increase the heat to evaporate it.
- Add in 2 tablespoon of coconut milk, cooked black beans (if using), and stir until incorporated.
- The consistency should be like a rice pudding, thick and creamy.
- Serve warm or chilled with additional coconut milk (or thickened coconut milk).
Thickened coconut milk:
- In a small saucepan, combine coconut milk, sugar, and salt and heat over medium heat.
- In a small bowl, combine cold water and cornstarch and stir to make a slurry.
- Bring the coconut milk mixture up to a boil and add in the cornstarch slurry, stirring until thickened.
- Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl or serving vessel.
The nutritional information provided should be considered as approximate and is not guaranteed. Please use your best judgment to ensure food is safely prepared and/or a good fit for your diet.