Black Rice Bilo-Bilo

This Philipino rice pud is a super hearty dessert or a suitable indulgent breakfast. It’s free from gluten, making it a versatile soiree surprise, and is easily adjusted to be as sweet or savoury as desired. Here it’s served with apple and pear, but it would just as easily go with grapefruit or orange.


1 cup black rice (such as Lotus Foods Forbidden rice)
1 tablespoon plus ⅓ cup sugar; plus more for apples
Kosher salt
2 13.5-ounce cans unsweetened coconut milk
2 firm apples or ripe but firm pears, halved, cored
¼ cup puffed rice cereal
Finely grated lime zest


Bring rice, 1 Tbsp. sugar, a pinch of salt, and 2 cups water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high; reduce heat, cover pan, and simmer until rice is tender, 30–40 minutes. Drain rice if needed; return to pot and cover. Let sit off heat 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring coconut milk and ⅓ cup sugar to a boil in a medium skillet over medium-high. Reduce heat, and simmer until just thick enough to coat a spoon, 10–15 minutes.
Heat a grill pan or dry cast-iron medium skillet over medium. Cook apples until lightly charred, about 2 minutes per side. Let cool slightly, then chop. Toss apples and a pinch of sugar in a small bowl.

Add reduced coconut milk to rice and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook gently until the consistency of loose porridge.

Serve rice topped with charred apples, puffed rice, and lime zest.

Do Ahead: Rice and coconut milk can be cooked 3 days ahead. Cover and chill separately.

Recipe: Bad Saint, Washington, DC



Leave a Reply