Saturday, January 15, 2011

How to Cook Rice

There are over 2000 varieties of rice, more than 110 countries have crops and almost every country in the world have their very own rice dishes, I can mention the risotto from Italy, the paella from Spain, the nasi goreng from Indonesia, the arroz con pollo (rice cooked with pieces of chicken) from Venezuela, Pelao from Trinidad & Tobago and the list never end. 

Rice can be basically be divided in two types, long rice (which tend to stay separate when cooked) and the Short rice which stick together when cook.

I have seen many different ways to cook rice, some people put water to boil and them put the rice in the pot, some people toasted the rice with oil then they put water (hot or at room temperature), here in Trinidad I have seen people boil the rice until it get  dry and do not cover, and I am sure that you have your own way to make rice. 

Well, I make rice just how my mother tough me when I was small, I will give you may family recipe that works very well with long rice, then I will introduce you to two comum method of cooking rice The Absorption Method and the Boiling Method ( Taken from The Cook's book: Recipes and step-by-step techniques from top chef by Jill Norman) in my next issue. I hope you enjoy it!!!

Karina's Mom White Rice Recipe (for 4 portions):


1 cup of white rice (long type) not parboil.
2 cup of water
Salt to taste
Oil


Note: for each cup of rice you always have to use two (02) cups of water.

Directions:
In a large saucepan  with capacity for at least 3 times the volume of rice, put some oil at medium fire (just enough to toast the rice);

Aadd the rice (do not wash or rinse the rice), and with a wooden spoon toast the rice for a little bit (do not let it get brown), then add water at room temperature. Add salt to taste. 



 Bring it to boil over moderate heat. Then simmer uncover, until all liquids is absorbed. Stir one gently.

Reduce the heat (minimum fire) and cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid. Let it cook for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. The rice is ready.




I have been making rice from my family recipes for years, and the result has been excellent, no mater the amount of rice I need to make, the proportions are the same, and the result  too. Just remember to use a sauce pan that can hold at least 3 times the amount of rice that you need to cook. Do not let the rice cook for more than 12 minutes after the rice is covered, otherwise the rice will came out too soft and sticky. We want to achieve  a separated grain, for this I recommend to use also long grain.


TIPS FOR PERFECT RICE

  • Always buy good-quality rice
  • Use a heavy-bottomed pan with a tight-fitting lid
  • Be sure that the rice is big enough, rice can triple in volume
  • To add flavour use stock instead of water, you can also saute pieces of onion and/or pimento before adding the rice. Flavour can be added also adding pieces of onion to the water and remove when the rice is ready.
  • Never stir, prod or even taste rice during the cooking process. Rice grain are delicate and can easily split, releasing their starch and becoming sticky.

See you... I hope this tips and recipe can help you somehow in the kitchen...

White Long-Grain Rice on FoodistaWhite Long-Grain Rice

Rice on Foodista

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