Monday, February 27, 2012

How to cook Brown rice

Uncooked brown rice

What is Brown rice?
Brown rice is rice that is less processed than white rice. Brown rice is the result when the outermost layer, also known as the “husk” is removed. White rice has the outer husk removed, as well as the bran layer and germ layer. The white portion is the end sperm of the grain, and this is the starchy component. Brown rice is less processed  and as such the nutritive value is superior to white rice. While both have the same number of carbohydrates and calories, a single cup of cooked brown rice has 84 grams of magnesium. Magnesium has many health benefits. It is known to assist the bio-availability of vitamin B6 and cholesterol, prevents osteoporosis, heart attacks ,hypertension, migraines, gallstones and kidney stones, etc.

How to prepare brown rice:
Par cooked brown rice.Image via Wikipedia


Many people shy away from cooking plain white rice, however, both white and brown rice are very simple to prepare. The chief difference in preparation is the time. Brown rice takes about twice as long to cook as white rice, so plan out your meal in advance. Other than that there are very few differences. I have read all sorts of crazy ways people cook brown rice even rice to water ratios of 1 cup of rice to 12 cups of water. However, I have found that this is just plain unnecessary.

If you are expecting the same texture as white rice, adding more water to the process and cooking for longer may give you a closer texture to that of white rice, but I am a fan of saving time. I also like the chewy texture of brown rice. Cooking grains for the least amount of time needed is no doubt the way to go.

The water to rice ratio for white and brown rice is almost similar, with the exception that brown rice is one cup of rice to two and one half cups of water. While white rice takes about twenty minutes to cook, brown rice takes about 45 minutes. To feed four adults, two cups of brown rice to 4 ½ cups of water are usually sufficient.

Step one:
Rinse your rice in cool water. This is optional.
Select a pan suitable for the number of people you plan on serving. I use a large skillet to prepare my rice.
Step two:
Add in two cups of water and bring to a boil.
Step three:
Once water is boiling, add in 2 cups of brown rice, stir and bring back to a boil. Simmer uncovered for about 10 minutes. Lower heat setting on your stove top to simmer or lowest setting, cover rice. Let cook for about 30-35 minutes and do a taste check. If it is to your liking remove from heat, season and add a few pats of butter and stir. If you like it a little softer, add a half of a cup of water and continue cooking for an additional 5-10 minutes.
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