Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Steamed Brown Rice

Plain steamed brown rice is usually prepared as an ingredient for other dishes like lemon rice (great use of leftover rice), or as a side dish for sauces like curries. Steamed rice can be dressed up a bit adding a few small vegetables like peas, and common seasoning like cumin and salt.

1 cup brown rice soaked
1 cup water
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cumin seed ground
1/4 cup green peas

Soak: plan ahead and at morning or noon, measure dry rice and soak, 2 hr. Test by biting a single kernel of wet rice. Wet rice will not crunch like dry rice. Rinse and drain.

Cook: Add rice and water to rice cooker. Add any optional spices and vegetable. Close lid and start cooking and steaming, 35-45 min. When finished, fluff lightly with wooden spoon and serve.

Rice Cooker
- Not enough water, boils out too soon, and undercooks the rice. Rice kernel is hard.
- Too much water, takes forever to boil out, and overcooks the rice. Rice is mushy and sticky.
- Soaked rice both absorbs less water (add less water), and cooks faster (add less water), than dry rice. Start with 1:1 ratio of soaked brown rice to water. (Directions that call for more water probably don't soak the rice.)
- Set a timer to 45 min for the rice cooker. This will guarantee you don't forget the rice. A timer also make you aware of how long the rice boils and steams. When rice cooker switches from boil to steam, note how much time the brown rice boiled (probably 20-30 min), and reduce the timer to 15 min.
- Best use your own measures and ignore the measure and marks provided by the rice cooker. The rice cooker provided measure cup is only 3/4 cup (180 ml), while pan side marks are 2x that, or 1-1/2 cup (360 ml).

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