Rice in Coconut Milk

(Photo by Charles Haynes/Flickr)
(Photo by Charles Haynes/Flickr)

This is served on New Year's Day, to augur prosperity for the coming year. In many homes it is also served at breakfast on the first day of each month.

Serves 6.


500 g/1 lb/2 1/2 cups short grain or broken rice
1 litre/2 pints/4 cups water
400 ml/14 fl oz can coconut milk
2 teaspoons salt
1 stick cinnamon (optional)


In a heavy-based saucepan bring rice and water to a boil. Cover and cook on low Heat 15 minutes. Dilute coconut milk with sufficient water to make 500 ml (1 pint) and heat gently almost to boiling point, stirring. Add to rice with salt and cinnamon stick, stirring well with the handle of a wooden spoon. Replace lid of pan and continue to cook over low heat for a further 15 minutes or until all the milk is absorbed. Remove cinnamon stick, and turn rice onto a flat dish. Smooth top with a piece of banana leaf or oiled foil. Mark in large diamond shapes. Serve with accompaniments.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)