Attention: this is not your usual rice pudding. Moreover, it’s not a rice pudding at all. Plus it’s tradition mixed with the choice of products in a supermarket on the opposite side of the street. Creamy, fluffy, and even vegan.
There are some tasty grains that are often forgotten. Checking out the cookbook that my grandma had, I found stuff like buckwheat and millet. The primer is used in Polish cuisine quite often (kaszanka, a relative of British black pudding, anyone? ) and when I was a kid, my mum used it to serve alongside mouthwatering sauces or lovingly tender chicken livers, too. The latter is often being forgotten, and it shouldn’t – because, in my humble opinion, it’s a perfect breakfast food. But let’s get back to vintage recipes.
What I loved about that recipe book was the simplicity. As the export-import situation in Eastern Europe was complicated, and general food rationing was often getting in the way (the cookbook dates back to 1949, but was extensively used in the Seventies and Eighties, too), there was far less ingredients available. No supermarkets. You needed to cope with what you had and aim to make it delicious. That generation relied on the local produce, stuff you’ve grown, or local markets. They were hipsters before it was mainstream, children.
The jaglanka is made just like rice pudding. It’s fairly simple, you can make it in advance and heat up the next morning, so all the criteria have been met. Equally creamy and fluffy, but with more protein and fiber, and no animals have been cooked in the process – what’s not to love?
Serves 2-3 | Preparation time: active ~20 mins, total ~40min
100g of millet grains*
2 cups of coconut milk
1 tablespoon of fructose (or 2 tablespoons of brown sugar)
3/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
a pinch of nutmeg
Fill a big saucepan with water. Bring it to boil, then put the millet in. Cover and simmer for around 15 minutes. Leave covered for additional 5 minutes, then drain.
Pour the milk into another saucepan. Add fructose, cinnamon, vanilla essence and nutmeg. Boil it, stirring when the bubbles start to appear on the surface. Add millet and stir for a minute. Lower the heat and keep on mixing the content of the saucepan. Keep on simmering it until it reaches the thick and creamy structure – it should take around ten minutes. Remember to stir it constantly!
Remove from the heat. Top it with chopped walnuts and almonds, if you wish. You can mix it with mashed banana and a bit of microwaved frozen berries (works very, very, very well!). Or serve it with fruit- fresh raspberries and strawberries, perhaps, mango, maybe kiwi and tangerines?
*If you’re lucky enough to buy millet – or should I rather say ‘kasza jaglana’ – in a Polish shop (or in Lidl when they have a Polish week [lol]), it will probably be sold in a box with 4 separate bags, 100g each. Each one of them has tiny holes. Don’t remove the bag when you cook it in water – it’s a clever way Poles cook all the grains which saves you on the hassle of draining. You won’t even need a colander (one thing less to wash, the beauty of lazy cooking)! Remove the packaging before you cook it with milk.
Smacznego – enjoy your millet breakfast pudding!