Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Rice Information

There are many different choices when it comes to rice these days.  This post is meant to be a brief beginner's guide to rice. 

The difference between Long Grain and Short Grain is Short/Medium Grain Rice is a stickier rice.  I grew up with Long Grain and so naturally that is what I prefer.  But if I could eat my rice, or any food item for that matter, with chopsticks I am sure I'd switch to Short Grain.

Visually compare White Rice and Brown Rice:
Long Grain White Rice on the Left, Long Grain Brown Rice on the Right
Brown Rice has a tan color to it--that's the bran. 

The skinny on Brown Rice is that it is more nutritious than White RiceBrown Rice digests more easily than White Rice due to the fiber rich rice bran remaining intact on Brown RiceBrown Rice retains the natural oils, proteins and vitamins that are lost in the processing of White Rice.  So with all of these benefits why would anyone buy anything different.  It's because Brown Rice does NOT store well.  The natural oils in it can cause the rice to go rancid in 6 months to a year.  It's a great choice for everyday use but again Brown Rice does NOT store well long term.  The Shelf Life for Long Grain White Rice in a sealed #10 can (with oxygen absorber) is 10 to 15 years under ideal storage conditions.

Brown Rice has a slightly nutty flavor to it.  It does take longer to cook than White Rice.  

Stove Top Directions for Long Grain WHITE Rice: Measure 1 part rice to 2 parts water. Place in large pot and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Boil for 1 minute, then cover and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes, or until water is absorbed.

Stove Top Directions for Long Grain BROWN Rice: Measure 1 part brown rice to 2 parts water.  Add salt to water and bring to a boil. Stir in rice and reduce heat to a simmer, cooking for about 45 minutes covered.

I personally use a rice cooker, which gives me great rice every time. 

So I know you are just dying to know what I use.  I'll admit it--I love Long Grain WHITE Rice. Gasp! Shock! What! Say it isn't so! But it is. I love it. I buy Long Grain White Rice for my family. I'll eat Brown Rice when it's served and it's good.  However, I buy White Rice for 3 reasons: that's what I grew up with (and Mom is always right!), it cooks faster, and because it stores longer.  My husband grew up on Brown Rice and I have a sister that uses Brown Rice.  To each their own...
What variety of Rice do you prefer?  Do you have any special tips on how you prepare your rice? 

Happy Eating!


Cami said...

I too prefer the taste of white rice, long or short. (Living in Hawaii they only know what "sticky rice" is, so that's what we've been using.) I do like that white rice stores well, but I don't like that it doesn't have much nutritional value. What we have been doing to add some of that nutrition, but not sacrifice the great taste of white rice, is adding half white and half brown rice to our dishes. Its great because it still tastes yummy but adds more fiber, etc! Try it, you won't even know the brown rice is there! You can just throw both rices into the rice cooker and it cooks evenly!

Nathan said...

It was a little bit of an acquired taste for me, but I really like medium grain brown rice. Tastes like you're eating at Pei Wei!

Brenda said...

I prefer brown rice, but don't like how mushy it comes out when I cook it on the stove. It reminds me of oatmeal, sometimes.
I like to cook it using a recipe from Alton Brown (Food Network) where he bakes it in the oven. It comes out perfect and fluffy every time.

Here's a link to the recipe:

We do, also use white rice for the storage, and convenience of cooking.