Basic Steamed Rice

Basic Steamed Rice

It may seem basic, but it’s not so easy to get that nice steamed rice that sticks together enough to eat with chopsticks! The first rule is to avoid minute and converted varieties. Start with a medium-grain rice (jasmine rice is great for this, or just buy medium-grain bulk rice), then as you become more confident, mix in a variety that suits your taste – we like a mixture of equal parts white, sticky (aka glutinous), and brown sticky rice. And some of our friends go in for truly exotic varieties, such as purple, red, black, and even green rice.

In a rice cooker:
Use the measure that came with your rice cooker to add 3 c of rice to the pot (it’s probably about 2.25 regular cups).
Cover the rice with cold water, rub the grains between your fingers, then pour the water carefully out.
Repeat the process.
Fill to the 3 c line with fresh water, then add 1/2 of the measure more of fresh water.
If you have time, let the rice soak for at least 30 m – it can be as long as several hours.
Put the pot into the cooker and turn on according to the appliance directions.
When the cooker indicates the rice is done, let it sit covered for 10 more m. before serving.

In a pot:
Measure 2.25 c of rice into a medium-sized heavy pot that has a lid.
Cover with cold water, rub the grains between your fingers, then pour the water carefully out.
Repeat the process.
Add enough water to the pot so that between the top of the rice and the top of the water is the same as the measure between the tip and first knuckle of your index finger (don’t ask me – it works!)
If you have time, let the rice soak for at least 30 m – it can be as long as several hours.
Turn the heat on high and bring the rice to a boil with the lid on.
As soon as it boils, crack the lid, turn the heat to low, and allow to simmer until the level of the water is even with the top of the rice.
Cover the pot tightly, turn the heat as low as possible, and simmer until the water is absorbed, usually 10-15 m. more.
Turn off the heat and let it sit covered for 10 more m. before serving.

hints:
If you use a mix of brown and white rice in the rice cooker, soak the brown rice much longer – even all day – before adding the white rice and soaking that. The same applies to the exotic varieties – they may take a bit of experimentation.
If you use a mix of brown and white rice in a pot, I suggest cooking them separately, then mixing together once cooked.

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