In a bowl, rinse basmati rice until the water runs clear. Soak rice for 20 minutes. Transfer soaked rice into a strainer and drain thoroughly.
Place rice into a blender or small food processor; pulse to coarsely grind. Set aside.
If using cardamom pods, grind cardamom seeds in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder and set aside.
In a saucepan, combine canned coconut milk with the coconut beverage and salt. Place onto medium-high and stir until it just begins to boil. Immediately reduce heat to medium-low (coconut milk tends to separate when boiled for an amount of time).
Add in the coarsely ground rice, shredded coconut, and ground cardamom. Stir frequently to prevent burning. Simmer for 30 minutes or until rice is soft, milk has thickened slightly, and the pudding is creamy.
Stir in the Redpath® Organic Granulated Sugar and simmer for an additional 5 minutes to dissolve sugar.
Remove from heat and stir in the orange blossom water. Transfer pudding into a wide dish (or if serving warm, place into decorative bowls or glasses).
Lay a piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper directly onto the surface of the rice pudding to prevent a skin from forming. Place into the fridge to chill; 4 hours.
Serve in decorative bowls or glasses. Garnish with pistachio, toasted coconut, and/or a sprinkling of orange zest.
*Coconut milk is derived naturally from coconuts and is commonly sold in cans.
*Coconut beverage is a drink made from coconut meat and is sometimes called “milk.” You can find it in cartons in the dairy aisle or alongside nut “milks.”
*Organic produce and products can be found in the organic aisle of any major grocery store or in health food stores.
*Grinding cardamom from pods give a more pronounced flavour of the spice than pre-ground cardamom. Ensure pre-ground cardamom is fresh or add more ground cardamom, to taste.
*Rice can be rinsed and soaked several hours before to ensure water has been drained thoroughly.
*For a nuttier flavour use cashew beverage, for a more coconut flavoured rice pudding use coconut beverage. Alternatively, any non-dairy based beverages can be used (almond, oat, or soy).
*Pudding will continue to thicken as it cools; if a thinner consistency is desired, add an additional ¼ cup (60 ml) of the coconut beverage when adding the orange blossom water.
*Orange blossom water can be found in either the baking aisle or international aisle of most major grocery or even health food stores. If unavailable, replace with finely grated orange zest, vanilla extract, or omit completely.
*Rosewater can be used in place of the orange blossom water. Garnish with dried rose petals instead of the orange zest, if using.