inspiration2022/07/25

An Ixta Belfrage Recipe: Sticky Coconut Rice Cake With Turmeric Tomatoes

by Ixta Belfrage

Read our Q&A with Ixta Belfrage, cook, food writer and Contributing Editor at ELLE UK. This recipe is an extract from Mezcla, her first solo cookbook following on from being co-author, with Yotam Ottolenghi, of Ottolenghi Flavour.

This recipe is almost completely hands off and requires very little prep; all you have to do is rinse rice, crush garlic, julienne ginger and chop spring onions. Both the rice cake and the tomatoes bake in the oven at the same time and don’t need to be stirred or basted, leaving you to get on with other things.

Leftover rice cake slices are great pan-fried the next day, in a little oil, until crispy. This dish is vegan as it is, but I love it with crispy fried eggs, too. 

Ingredients: 

Rice cake: 

  • 400g Thai sticky rice (aka glutinous rice or sweet rice), rinsed and drained (see notes)
  • 400g tin of full-fat coconut milk (at least 70% coconut extract)
  • 250g water
  • 2 small cloves of garlic, finely grated/crushed
  • 2 teaspoons of finely grated fresh ginger
  • 2 spring onions, very finely chopped (25g)
  • 1½ teaspoons of fine salt

Turmeric tomatoes: 

  • 400g sweet, ripe cherry tomatoes, such as Datterini
  • 15g fresh ginger, peeled and julienned
  • 15g fresh coriander, stalks and leaves
  • 3 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 70g olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup or honey
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1¼ teaspoons cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon fine salt

To serve: 

  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 5g fresh coriander
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges

Method: 

1. Preheat the oven to 230°C fan/250°C. Line a 23 x 23cm baking tin (or a similar-sized ovenproof dish) with non-stick parchment paper.

2. Whisk all the ingredients for the rice cake together, making sure to get rid of any lumps of coconut milk. Pour into the prepared tin and flatten the top. For the tomatoes, put all the ingredients into an ovenproof dish that’s just big enough for them all to fit snugly in a single layer.

3. Put both dishes in the oven – the tomatoes on the top shelf and the rice on the bottom shelf (or preferably both on the top shelf, if they’ll fit). Bake for 30 minutes. The tomatoes should be soft and slightly charred and the rice should be cooked through and golden-brown on top.

4. Remove both dishes from the oven. Cover the tomatoes to keep them warm. Leave the rice to rest for 20 minutes. Turn the oven grill to its highest setting. After 20 minutes, lift the rice cake onto a flat baking tray with the paper.

5. Tear away any overhanging parchment that could burn under the grill. Grill for 5–8 minutes near the top of the oven, or until the rice is crisp and golden-brown on top. All grills are different so this could take more or less time. If you have a blowtorch, use it to crisp up and lightly char the surface a little more.

6. Leave to cool for 5 minutes before slicing into squares. Serve with the warm tomatoes and garnish with the spring onions, coriander and lime wedges. 

Notes: 

I use Thai Taste brand sticky rice, which doesn’t need to be soaked. If you’re using another brand, check the instructions on the side of the packet, as the rice may need to be soaked overnight

Both parts of the dish can be made the day before and reheated in a warm oven. 

Independent
Designers

Free 14-Day Returns
Worldwide

No Animal Testing
No Fur