- Food and Cooking
How To Cook Rice To Perfection
A STEP BY STEP GUIDE ON HOW TO COOK RICE TO PERFECTION
Cooking rice to perfection can be so hit and miss sometimes. I always thought it had to do with the exact measures of water to rice as my rice always turned out either as, what I can only describe as, wall paper paste substitute ie a congealed mess or it would go the other way and be semi cooked inedible rice.
The next misconception was that I should only use expensive rice as this had, what I can only presume, to be magical expensive rice qualities that some how the rice, when put with water in a pot would know what to do. The slow realisation that, at the end of the day, rice is rice dawned. When the rice is rice dawned on me so did the fact that rice is just a little grain full of carbohydrate. Brown rice is not better for you than white rice (oh how I am just waiting for the uproar on that statement), as rice has very little in the way of nutrients and is just a great little carbohydratey friend.
I have read so many statements about how we should look to the Asian continent to see how good rice is for you, then the same people, normally in the same paragraph, will tell you to eat brown rice instead of white. Here's a thing for you, I lived in Asia from the age of 7 to 19 years old and NEVER EVER saw brown rice, it just isn't eaten!
I digress, here is a little article that will show you very simply how to cook PERFECT rice!
Do You Need To Be A Rice Conisseur
After many years of cooking rice and trying all different types, I do believe that at the end of the day all rice tastes pretty much the same. The only difference I can find with most rice is the price tag . . do you agree?
Do you agree that any rice will do or does it HAVE to be Basmati/Jasmine/Brown Rice
You Do Not Need Pricey Rice
I have spent stupid amounts of money on all variations of rice and have come to one very sane conclusion. They all taste pretty much the same and the fact is rice is used as an accompaniment to meals such as Sweet and Sour, curry, samosa, con carne etc so it is going to be drowned in their sumptuous flavour making the necessity for a strong rice flavour pretty much a mute point!
I now buy the stores cheapest brand. The main difference between the cheap brand and the more pricey numbers is the amount of starch residue you get. Starch residue is absolutely 100% not a problem as you will find out later. So save your money and get the cheap seats!
It's Rice Time
So Let's Get This Recipe On The Road . . . here goes
The Rice Makers Kit
Just so you know what you need to make this superb perfect rice recipe here is a little list.
Of course this stuff is a rather important part of the whole process
You will of course need a kettle to speed up the whole process
You are not going to get very far without a medium sized saucepan! You may have tough hands but please don't try to cook rice in them, unless you are made of teflon then pff who am I to tell you what to do?
I must admit I adore my funky red colander so you may now enjoy one too!
Why not really make a beautiful statement and serve in some super gorgeous rice bowls. They do give a meal a really nice touch.
The Measures - How Much Rice?
As a rule of thumb I add 2 to 2.5 cups of rice, or if you are my partner Rob that is 5 manly handfuls. Due to Rob being less of a clutz than me, I stick to using my little measuring cup.
How Much Water
So you have popped the rice into your pan. Now boil the kettle 1.5 liters of water. Once the water is boiled add to your pan of rice. Do not put cold water on the rice and bring to the boil it is a waste of time.
How Full Should The Pan Be?
After adding the rice and the water my pan in around 3/4 full and looks like this. Now put your pan on the hob to boil.
The Rules Of Rice Club
DO NOT PUT YOUR PAN ON SIMMER AND WALK AWAY! THIS IS THE FIRST RULE OF RICE CLUB!! KEEP YOUR PAN ON BOIL AND STAY WITH IT.
THERE ARE NO OTHER RULES BY THE WAY . . . . BIT OF A WORK UP BUT THERE YOU HAVE IT
Not Nice Rice - Yet . . .
Many people will tell you not to stir rice when it cooks. IGNORE THIS!! Stir it, and stir it a lot. Ensure the rice is not sticking to the bottom of the pan and keep it moving every couple of minutes.
Rice really is like a small child and you should not just turn down the fun and walk away as, like a child, it just gets all sulky and will get up to doing bad stuff in your absence. You should keep it on full throttle, give it all of your attention until it has no other choice but to behave perfectly!
Rice is a water absorber and so if you water looks like this picture you know the rice is not yet done as there is way too much water showing. Note the colour of the water, this is the starchy residue that you get with cheap rice, not a problem as we will be rinsing later.
Nearly Ready Rice
Now we are really cooking. The water is becoming thicker, you can now see the swollen rice and instead of rolling water you will notice quite large bubbles appearing. You must keep a keen eye on your rice right till the end. Keep testing small amounts on a teaspoon from here on in to check its progress.
Rice Ready To Rinse
You may find that you need to top up the water a small amount to ensure the rice does not start sticking to the bottom of the pan, don't worry this is all fine and dandy. At the end of the process there will be very little water and the rice will look swollen rather than blistered, don't panic if it has blistered this is not the end of the world!
Just Before The Rice Magic Happens - The Mistake Most People Make
The mistake a lot of people make is just thinking this little pot of gloop is a ricey failure. YOU ARE WRONG PEOPLE! Here is what you MUST now do.
Put a large colander into your sink and empty the cooked rice in. If you have used the cheaper rice (like I do) you will think it is all gloopy and horrid. Do not fear this is when the Cathi magic happens. Pour around 2 kettle fulls of COLD water over your rice. You will notice the gloop coming out of your colander in a big white sticky mess. You will also notice your rice magically appears in its gorgeous perfect form . . see the Cathi magic has happened!
Rinsing The Rice - All becomes clear
As you can see on the right of the colander in the picture the lumps of starch, this left on is what causes the wall paper paste effect . . blerg.
So you have rinsed your rice thoroughly and it should now look like this. Ohhhh happy days my friend, happy days.
It Is Done Perfect Cooked Rice - Tah Dah! It is done!
To finish, pour another kettle full (1 litre will do) of BOILING water over the rice to heat it through and TAH DAH! Your work here is done!
All in all it should take you around 15 - 20 minutes from start to finish. You have just made perfect rice. Give yourself a well deserved salsa round the kitchen finished off with a personal round of applause and, if you are stretch enough a good old pat on the back.
Now all you have to do is pop it into a bowl and eat it! Grum nyum nyum!
Thank you for bobbing along to find out my method of making perfect rice, here is hoping it all turns out really well for you too.