Delicious, properly cooked rice is the basis of many dishes. Neither pilaf, nor sushi, nor risotto, nor many other masterpieces of culinary skills will work if the rice is poorly cooked.
Perhaps every housewife at least once in her life has come across the fact that rice does not always turn out to be really tasty. For some, it remains tough, for others it sticks together into one huge lump, for others it burns.
Unfortunately, having prepared an unsuccessful dish several times, many housewives decide that rice is too difficult, and try to cook this cereal as rarely as possible, fearing another failure.
In fact, everything is not as scary as it might seem at first glance. Cooking rice is no more difficult than any other cereal, the main thing is to know a few important nuances.
Previously, we wrote about how to cook the perfect rice for cabbage rolls and how to properly store dry rice, and today we will tell you how to cook fragrant crumbly rice, which is suitable for both a side dish and a main dish.
The secret of crumbly rice
If you don’t know how to make rice fluffy, start with the basics – choose the right one. cereal variety for your meal.
The fact is that different varieties of rice contain a different percentage of starch, respectively, and their properties are completely different. For example, if you are cooking pilaf, it is better to use Jasmine, Basmatic or Indica long rice. Such rice, as a rule, turns out friable even for beginners. For making sushi, it is better to use special round rice. For this, Akita Komachi cereal with a high starch content is suitable. But for risotto, take Vialone, Baldo or Arborio rice.
If you are just learning how to cook and looking for rice of a particular variety in stores is too difficult and unjustified for you, remember a simple rule: long rice is fluffy, round rice is not. That is, for pilaf, use only long rice, but for dishes where rice must hold its shape, such as sushi, risotto, pudding, etc. buy only round rice.
The second important point in cooking rice is washing.
If you are preparing a dish for which you need crumbly rice, be sure to rinse the cereal. Rice should be washed in cold water at least seven times. Ideally it looks like this:
- pour the required amount of cereal into a bulky dish;
- pour cold water (it will become cloudy due to the starch that was on the cereal);
- drain this water;
- pour rice with fresh portion of cold water;
- repeat the manipulations until the water with which you pour the rice ceases to become cloudy.
The next important point is cooking technology. Fluffy rice is always cooked under a closed lid over minimal heat. Never cook rice until fully cooked. The fact is that rice is a cereal that continues to cook even after you turn off the stove. In other words, if you cook rice until it is fully cooked when preparing pilaf, it will simply absorb all the liquid from you and burn.
If you are trying to figure out how to cook fluffy rice for a side dish or rice for a salad, cook it only until al dente. As soon as the rice boils, reduce the heat to a minimum, let the grits boil for 5-7 minutes and turn off.
Even if you made a mistake with the proportions and put too much cereal, but turned off the stove in time, the dish will be saved. Due to the temperature, the cereal will continue to cook in the hot broth, but when the stove is off, it will never burn.
Many housewives make the same mistake – they cook rice until cooked in violation of all proportions and technologies, and then they wonder why it is not possible to cook friable rice. The answer is simple – rice does not like long cooking. It is enough for him to boil. Then the temperature will do everything for you.
How to choose proportions
If you do not know how much water is needed to make the rice fluffy, take it in a ratio of 1:3. That is, for one glass of rice you need to take three glasses of water.
However, you need to take into account the fact that the proportions largely depend on the dish you are preparing. If we are talking about risotto, then the ratio of rice to liquid is 1:5, if you cook sushi, then 1:2, and sometimes 1:1, depending on the cooking technology.
Before cooking rice, the proportions can be calculated using an ordinary glass or tablespoons. Keep in mind that rice triples in size when cooked, so don’t cook too much at once, especially if you’re not sure you’re cooking the rice right.
What utensils are suitable for cooking rice
Rice can be cooked both on an open fire and in the oven, in the oven and in the slow cooker. Chefs are convinced that the ideal dish for cooking rice is with a double bottom. However, let’s be honest – few people have professional utensils in the kitchen. At home, you can use a saucepan, a stewpan, a roaster, ceramic pots, and any other heat-resistant utensils that you have to cook cereals. Ideally, use cast iron cookware, as it keeps the temperature longer.
How to calculate cooking time in a pot and slow cooker
If you do not know how to cook friable rice in a multicooker, in this case everything is as simple as possible – you just need to turn on the “Pilaf” or “Rice” mode, depending on the model of your multicooker.
If you are trying to figure out how to cook rice in a pot, the rice should boil and cook for at least 10 minutes depending on the dish you want to cook. If your grits cook for 20-30 minutes after boiling, you will get anything but crumbly rice.