Apart from potatoes and pasta, rice is probably the most popular side dish for meat, vegetables, etc. But often the little tasty kernels end up on the plate: something can go wrong during the preparation, which can ruin the enjoyment at the end. That’s why we’re giving you seven tips for cooking rice today, so that everything really is perfect.
Preparing rice – Tip 1: Pay attention to the special characteristics of the respective varieties
Rice isn’t just rice: there’s high-quality long-grain rice, basmati rice, brown rice, jasmine rice, and what feels like hundreds of other varieties. And yes: the varieties differ from each other on various points, for example in terms of taste and texture – but also in relation to cooking time. They also want to be treated differently.
Many always cook the rice in the same way and do not take into account the… let’s call it the individual needs of the respective grains. So: Before you get started – you MUST read the package instructions properly.
Tip 2: Choose the right type of rice for each dish
We already had it: Since rice is not just rice, not all rice is suitable for every project. Since we don’t want to go beyond the scope here, we’d like to refer you to our guide, where we break it all down for you in great detail:
Oh, and if you’re planning to make a risotto, we’ll explain here which flavors go best with this dish.
Tip 3: Wash the rice before cooking
Just dump the rice in the water and get started? It’s not that easy – at least if you expect the perfect result. If you take some time in advance and wash the rice thoroughly, you can look forward to all sorts of benefits.
Rinsing removes excess starch – as well as any residues from minor impurities. This makes it all more digestible and also healthier. In addition, washing the rice beforehand will make it more grainy and crispy. Perfect!
Tip 4: Soak rice before cooking
Oh dear…another time waster. Of course, you don’t “need” to soak the rice before cooking – but in terms of health, it pays off. Scientific studies have shown that soaking rice can minimize the level of pesticides in it. It’s definitely worth striving for, don’t you think?
Attention, bragging knowledge: Rice is very healthy in itself and contains many nutrients and vitamins. However, the products from the supermarket contain a lot of arsenic, which the rice itself as a plant absorbs from the groundwater. You can reduce the arsenic content by washing beforehand – and then soaking does the rest. It reduces the arsenic content by a good 84 percent.
Now if you are ambitious and want to soak your rice before cooking, you should note a few things: The rice must be soaked the day before cooking, preferably overnight. Simply put the desired amount in water and then cover with a clean paper towel. Now just leave it until you actually use it. Before use, pour into a strainer and rinse with cold water until the water that comes out is completely clear. Then it’s just a matter of continuing with the preparation.
Tip 5: Pay attention to the right ratio between water and rice
Just throw any amount of water and rice into the pot and you’re good to go? You can probably already imagine that this is not the ideal way. Sure, it’s a bit annoying – but you’ll actually get the best result if you measure the ingredients in advance. And yes, how much water you need for the rice depends on the variety you choose. So here’s the tip: Read the instructions on the package!
But we have a little mnemonic for you:
- Jasmine and basmati rice: Here you need one and a half times the amount of water
- Risotto rice: Here you need three times more water than rice
- Rice porridge: In this case, you need a full five times the amount (in this case) of milk in relation to the rice
Tip 6: Do not stir the rice while it is cooking
People want to touch while cooking. Makes you feel busy and somehow also super professional. Besides, nothing burns – right? Not really! Stirring also removes starch from the rice and heat escapes from the grain. As a result, the rice tends to become sticky later and has a rather unsightly texture.
Tip 7: Pay attention to the right temperature
If you gasped at the prohibition against stirring: If the heat is regulated correctly, nothing will burn even without stirring. However, many people keep the same heat when cooking rice.
The correct way to do it is: Cook the rice on the highest setting, then let it simmer on medium heat. Boiling kills any bacteria – the lower heat immediately afterwards is sufficient to cook the rice without burning.
With our seven tips for cooking rice, everything should go smoothly – and you can look forward to a healthy, tasty side dish that also has the ideal consistency. That’s how we like it! We’ve selected a few of our rice highlights for you here:
By the way: We also have tips for you for cooking potatoes – and we are happy to tell you all the things you can do wrong when cooking pasta.