Cardamom Tapioca Pudding with Summer Berries

The last Bank Holiday until Christmas. Scary. And also a little depressing that it was basically a washout. After an very energetic game of pictionary last night with friends today was definitely one for PJs, back episodes of River Cottage on the food channel and the weekly supermarket shop (not done in PJs I might add). 

So what can you make when it's August but the weather is more like October? Something warm, comforting but still with a hint of Summer...this cardamom tapioca pudding is perfect. It's the culmination of all that is wonderful about late Summer - it's full of orange sunsets, brambles, warmth and memories. I'm going to carry this recipe through to Autumn with me because it feels like getting a hug from pudding. Have I built it up too much? nah.

I love pudding. It's different from dessert, or cake. Pudding is something else. It reminds me of school dinners and uniforms. I yearn for school in a big way at this time of year. I want to buy new stationary and knee socks but I guess at 26 I probably definitely shouldn't be wearing knee socks. 

The berries make a brilliant addition to this tapioca. The heat of the cardamom and the subtle hint of tea go perfectly with the sharp raspberries and sweet blackberries. In the Autumn I would pair this with a runny jam and light brown sugar sprinkled lightly on top. 

This dish will serve 6 people and is only 216 calories. I calculated it as 6 propoints on the Weight Watchers plan but it could be less as the fruit would be free. I think I will probably re-heat some and have it for breakfast before work tomorrow as it will be a great alternative to my usual porridge.

Cardamom Tapioca Pudding with Summer Berries
(taken from the Aug/Sept 2012 issues of Jamie magazine)

serves 6

550ml milk
1 black tea bag (optional)
1/2 tablespoon cardamom pods
125g tapioca pudding
200ml tinned light coconut milk
40g golden caster sugar
soft light brown sugar, to serve
400g mixed berries
25g shelled pistachios
  1. Place the milk and tea bag (if using) in a saucepan and gently simmer for 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and take out the tea bag.
  2. Take the seeds out of the cardamom pods and crush in a pestle and mortar. Add to the milk.
  3. Rinse the tapioca under cold running water and add to the milk. Stir in the coconut milk and golden caster sugar. Return the pan to the heat and summer gently for 30-40 minutes, stirring regularly, until thick and creamy. 
  4. Serve the tapioca sprinkled with the sugar, berries and pistachios.