As a recipe developer, I am always on the lookout for interesting ingredients – ones that are healthy and not extremely popular. Black rice posed as an inspiration when I started reading about its versatility and health benefits. Being a north Indian, I had to search for this distant cousin of white rice. Thanks to online shopping sites. I could connect with a seller in north east India where it is organically produced.
When it arrived in my kitchen, I instantly fell in love with its colour and texture. And when it was cooked like a normal rice dish, its rich taste, purplish hue, sweet nuttiness and chewy texture inspired me to try out this Black Rice Tart recipe.
Although black rice is ideal for dishes such as puddings, desserts or risotto, I tried to bring in the tart dough kind of consistency by clubbing it with sorghum flour (jowar ka aata), a millet that has huge amount of macronutrients and dietary fibre.
Black Rice Tarts with Mango-Chia Seed Topping recipe
Yield: 12 Tarts
½ cup – Black rice (washed and soaked overnight)
½ cup – Sorghum flour
¼ cup – Salted butter or ghee
A pinch of salt
Water to knead
* To begin with, cook the soaked black rice with double the amount of water. Once done, let it cool down to room temperature. Now add sorghum flour, butter (or ghee), salt and start kneading. Try to bring in the dough kind of consistency. Add water only when required. Once the dough is ready, cling wrap it and let it rest for a while.
* Roll out the dough and cut circles with the help of a round cookie cutter or a small size steel bowl. Spread them on greased tart moulds. You can choose any shape.
* Adjust them on a baking tray and bake at 150 degree celsius for 20-25 minutes in a preheated oven.
* Once baked, let them rest and demould only when completely cooled.
* For toppings, I chose something that’s seasonal, quick and easy. Mango chunks with loads of chia seeds. You can also add fruit cream, chocolate ganache, lemon curd, custard, caramel or just a dollop of whipped cream.
Health benefits of black rice:
Black rice is a powerhouse of nutrition. It’s incredibly healthy, and was primarily consumed by Chinese royals for the smooth functioning of stomach, liver and kidney. It has powerful antioxidant properties that are beneficial for people with diabetes and heart disorders. Moreover, it’s loaded with Vitamin E, which improves skin and hair.
If you wish to eat something low on calories, but tasty, serve yourself a platter full of black rice, which is rich in dietary fibre and iron content. You will love it.
Shalini Rajani is the founder of Crazy Kadchi and holds innovative and healthy cooking workshops for all age groups.