How to Cook the Perfect Bowl of Rice

Chinese New Year
Celebrate Chinese New Year

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I have been posting a series of recipes to celebrate Chinese New Year so I thought we need to look at how to cook the perfect bowl of light fluffy rice to eat with all the other dishes. If you follow the tips below you don’t need a rice steamer cluttering up your work surface and I know you won’t go wrong with the perfect accompaniment to your Char sui  Pork and Spicy Sesame Chicken Wings;-

Chinese Char sui
Char sui Pork

5 Top Tips to Cook the Perfect Bowl of Rice

  • When you are cooking a long grain rice like Basmati or Jasmine you need to rinse off any excess starch which will help stop the rice becoming sticky ( this occurs when the rice grains rub together during transit ). Place the rice in a colander and rinse under cold water until the water stops being cloudy and runs clear.
  • Add the rice to boiling well-salted water this will stop you from over seasoning the rice once you have cooked it. I use the following ratio 1 : 1 ¾ rice to water, the easiest way being one cup of rice, will feed two people, added to one and three-quarter cups of boiling salted water. This rule is not infallible as some types of rice may be a little more absorbent and you may need to use a 1 : 2 ratio.
  • Do not stir the rice whilst cooking as this will break down some of the rice releasing more of the sticky starch and keep the lid on tight so that the rice steams.
  • When the rice has finished cooking using a fork to lift and separate the individual cooked rice grains to fluff them up.
Stir fryBeef and Peppers
Beef in Black Bean Sauce

If you want to add a little more flavour to your rice try toasting dry rice, especially brown and wild varieties, by heating a little oil in a heavy bottomed frying pan and tossing the rice and giving it a nice even cooking for a couple over minutes over a medium heat which will really bring out the natural nutty flavour. Use a good quality meat, chicken, fish or vegetable stock instead of water but remember the stock may already be seasoned so you will need to add less salt, you can also add herbs, garlic, chilli and other flavourings.  Don’t forget to quickly cool down any excess rice and store in the refrigerator and use the leftovers for Egg Fried Rice.

Cooked Rice
Fluffy Cooked Rice

Perfect Fluffy Basmati Rice                  serves 2

1 cup ( around 90 gr ) Basmati Rice

1 3/4 cups of Water

A large pinch of Salt

First, we need to wash the rice. Place the rice in a colander and run under the cold tap gently swirling the rice with your hand. The water will go cloudy from all of the starch that you need to remove, continue this washing process until the water runs clear. Place the rice into a bowl and cover with water and soak for thirty to forty minutes.

Pour the water and salt into a medium-sized saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and bring to the boil. Drain the rice one more time and add to the boiling water, stir once, and wait until the water comes back to a full boil. Cover with the lid and turn the heat down as low as it will go and cook for fifteen minutes. Remove from the heat and keeping the lid on ( this is important to allow the rice to finish steaming ) leave for five more minutes. Carefully remove the lid and fluff the rice with a fork before serving.

There are no allergens in plain boiled rice.

Red Lantern

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