I am a big fangirl for turmeric. After reading about its DNA-repairing and anti-inflammatory benefits, I am sold on it until science proves otherwise. That's why I try to sneak this liquid gold into our meals as much as I can. Let me introduce you to my beloved vegan turmeric rice pudding recipe that needs to be in every health-conscious person's back pocket.
This dessert was served to the Ottoman Empire palace cohort for centuries before it found its way to commoners' tables for a variety of celebrations. The dessert's Turkish name, "zerde", can be literally translated as "turmeric" from Turkish. Some chefs in Turkey shockingly skip the turmeric in their recipes and use more saffron to land its yellow hues. I am assuming that they do so to exclude turmeric's distinct flavor from the dessert since not everybody is into it. So if you passionately dislike the taste of turmeric, either omit altogether or use half the amount prescribed.
Optimizing Nutrition for Vegan Turmeric Rice Pudding
You can swap the white rice for other gelatinous options such as tapioca. I plan to test it with brown rice one day as well; and will update this post when I do.
Yes, we do have a good dosage of turmeric in this dessert, but we also have lots of sugar. Therefore if you want to skip the sugar, use 1 ⅓ cups of erythritol per 1 cup of sugar instead. The taste is different of course, but the end result will still be delicious.
When optimizing a recipe for health-related or macro-friendly purposes, I usually choose whole food sweeteners such as blackstrap molasses, date sugar, date syrup, or sweet potato syrup. However, there are some recipes that the aforementioned sweeteners just won't work with. That is when I try these recipes with erythritol instead.
According to Dr. Greger:
The natural sweetener erythritol does not appear to carry the adverse effects associated with other non- and low-caloric natural and artificial sweeteners, and may actually have antioxidant potential.Dr. Greger on nutritionfacts.org
Moreover, I find the taste of erythritol a lot more neutral when compared to other popular options such as stevia or monk fruit.
This recipe is...
- cooling (if you choose to chill it)
- cozy (if you choose not to chill it)
- a party-favorite
- super easy
- and fit for sultans' tables. 🙂