When I was still living alone my pantry was actually a cupboard with mere three shelves: a) spices, b) pasta, rice, polenta, couscous, instant mashed potatoes and c) tea, coffee.
For me rice was long-grain parboiled rice, preferably Uncle Ben’s. Rice that never overcooked and tasted delicious.
Before we moved in together she came for a visit and dropped her jaw when she wanted to cook rice. What? No rice cooker? And only this, this, this rice. In order not to jeopardize our fresh relationship I ran to the shop to buy the rice she wanted me to buy. Of course I forgot it on the way, so I bought all 3 types of rice they had in the small K-market around the corner: parboiled long grain rice (not Uncle Ben’s, because she for some reason hated it), Basmati rice and Jasmine rice. For me they all looked the same. They were all long grain types of rice.
Today, about four years later, I was checking the pantry, which is not a single cupboard anymore and counting all kinds of rice we have. The list is overwhelming:a) Jasmine rice b) Basmati rice c) Broken rice d) Glutinous rice e) Brown rice f) Red rice g) Sushi rice h) Rice for rice porridge i) and rice I have never seen before and have to ask what it is
Let me quickly explain what I know about rice
Jasmine is moist and sticky, while Basmati is drier in texture (grains do not stick together). There is also a major difference in Glycaemic index (the higher GI, the faster carbohydrates break down during digestion and release glucose into the bloodstream – which is bad by the way) between Jasmine and Basmati rice. GI of Jasmine rice is according to some studies twice as high as GI of Basmati rice. If you want to eat healthy, buy Basmati rice. You will also get hungry much later.
Broken rice as name already says is second or third quality rice. People mix it together with 1st quality one to bring price down. Nothing bad about it. Same taste, same qualities. Especially when you have sticky Jasmine rice, you don’t pay so much attention to grain length.
Cook me! Brown rice
Brown rice and red rice are healthy ones, because the bran layer and germ are not removed in the processing. They are full of nutrients, unlike white rice, which consists mostly of carbohydrates.
How we are cooking rice
When I was still single I used to prepare all different kinds of risotto. My favourite is mushroom risotto, also meat one is perfect. My own recipe is rice with spinach and cucumbers. I have never cooked simple white rice before.
Nowadays we are not so creative anymore. Rice goes to rice cooker. Top with water so the water level is about 12 mm (half an inch) above the rice level. Cover. Press the button and wait. The cooker switches off when rice is ready. I do not know how it knows. I never bother to read the instructions.