Mangoes and Sticky Rice

I haven’t yet been to Thailand, but I’m sure when I do, I will live primarily off of pad Thai, satay (if that’s actually Thai) and mangoes and sticky rice. I had a former roommate who made the most amazing version of this dessert – the real way. Where you soak the rice over night, steam it instead of simmering and really take your time. That said, it has always daunted me and I’ve always felt bad considering a short cut.¬†Nonetheless, mangoes were super ripe a couple weeks ago, so in addition to making a whole trout on a magical culinary evening, I also made mangoes and sticky rice. I did cheat a little bit.

Here’s my easy version:
  • 1 cup short grain white rice
  • 2 ripe mangoes, peeled and cut into strips – the smaller yellow mangoes are perfect!
  • 4-5 tbsp palm sugar or brown sugar EK: I used brown
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 can good quality, thick coconut milk (I found this even at Safeway)
  • dash of vanilla extract
  • water
Rice:
  • Soak the rice in 1 cup of water for 20-30 min (up to 4 hrs)
  • Do not drain rice – add 3/4 cup more water, 1/4 can coconut milk, salt and 1 tbsp brown sugar in a sauce pot
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium-low heat and simmer with lid cracked for 20 min or until the rice has absorbed all the liquid
  • Turn off heat, put lid on tight and let sit for 5-10 min
Sauce:
  • Warm rest of the can of cocnut milk with remaining 3 tbsp of sugar, and a splash a vanilla.
Serve:
  • Scoop some rice into a bowl, top with generous amounts of mangoes and sauce
The verdict? Mango and coconut magic. It may not have been a traditional method, but the flavors sure were. I thought the sauce by itself was a little too sweet and vanilla (definitely add both gradually to taste), but when it was served with the rice and the mangoes, it was just a delightful combination. My other tips are to be sure not to over cook your rice, or to simmer too high (just like regular rice) and make sure your mangoes are super soft and ripe.
I don’t know the next time I’ll be able to make it back to Asia, so until then I will have to suffice with flavors of the tropics and a couple simplified steps.
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