Cooking rice has been a going concern for me since I can remember. It either turned out too sticky, too hard or I burned it. Many curse words later… I think have perfected the art of rice cooking. Follow along with me and try it for yourself! Times and amount of liquid used will vary, if you follow this method it works well for white rice (including basmati, jasmine, etc.), brown rice and wild rice.
**** Side note*****
I just glanced these instructions over, what you are about to read may seem very elaborate, and once you get the hang of it…. You will find out why people use rice cookers… BUT you will also be that one person in your group of friends that can cook a mean pot of rice – stove top!
Be exact with your measurements, for white rice the ratio of water to rice is 2:1, for brown rice it is 2.5:1, and for wild rice it is 3:1. Bust out those measuring cups!
A common mistake I made with rice was seasoning only with salt. Sautéing your rice in a bit of oil before adding your liquid can add a toasty, nutty flavor to the end result. Adding onions, garlic and seasoning while sautéing can add even more flavor. At this point add a bit of salt to taste.
Pick your liquid – water, chicken broth, beef broth, add flavours to your cooking liquid such as – a scoop of tomato sauce or paste, a bit of white wine or beer.
Actually cooking the rice is where things usually went wrong for me. If the heat is too high your liquid will evaporate before the rice is finished cooking. If the heat is too low you end up with a nice crunchy dinner, and I’m not talking al dente.
Once you have everything you want in your pot, crank the temperature on your stove to high and bring the mixture to a boil. Once it is at a rolling boiling (about 3 minutes) give the mixture a quick stir, reduce the heat to just under medium and cover with a lid.
Halfway through the rice cooking, taste the broth that your rice is cooking in. If you don’t like the way it tastes now, you probably won’t like your rice once it’s finished. If it tastes like it is missing something, it is probably salt! Add salt a bit at a time until you are happy with the taste.
Let it steam
Once the liquid has absorbed – 15-20 minutes for white rice – 25 – 45 minutes for brown rice – 50 – 60 minutes for wild rice – remove the rice from the heat and allow it to stand covered for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork and call it a day!
These tips will help you ten-fold next time you’re cooking up a batch of rice. If you’re as inspired to cook perfect rice as I once was, here is my Balanced Chef Rice Pilaf recipe that I serve with some of my meals.
Balanced Chef Rice Pilaf
1 tbsp Olive oil
½ medium onion, finely diced
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
1 c brown rice
2 ¼ c water
1 cube chicken bouillon
1 ½ tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
Salt to taste
- In a medium sized pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Sauté onions and garlic until fragrant and they begin to soften.
- Add rice and stir until grains are coated with a bit of the oil, sauté for 3-5 minutes until fragrant.
- Add water and bouillion cube. Bring rice to a boil, stir and taste your rice broth for seasoning.
- Adjust seasoning, reduce, cover and simmer for 35-45 minutes until rice is tender.
- Remove from heat and let the rice stand, covered for 10 minutes. Stir in parsley just before serving.