Cooking rice is one of the most basic skills needed in any kitchen. It can be intimidating to cook rice for the first time, but it’s actually quite easy and only takes a few minutes once you know how to go about it. The first thing to do is pick out your rice and follow these simple steps:
Basic Rice Cooking Guidelines:
Use a heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid: A heavy pot/lid makes it easier to regulate the temperature, which is essential to rice cooking. If you use a glass lid, it will also help seal in the moisture released from the rice as it cooks.
Use 2 cups rice to 3 cups liquid (water, broth, or milk): The more liquid added to rice, the softer and stickier it becomes. You can vary this ratio depending on how soft or firm you like your rice, but be aware that rice will continue cooking for a short while after you turn off the heat.
Don’t lift the lid during cooking: This will cause the rice to cook unevenly, with some rice overcooking and other rice undercooking. You can peek in when about half of the cooking time has elapsed. Also, if rice is not done when the rice cooker turns off, let it steam in the rice cooker for 5-10 minutes before serving.
Let rice sit for 5 to 10 minutes after cooking: This allows rice to firm up so that it doesn’t overcook or become mushy.
Now you’ve got all of your equipment and rice picked out, it’s time to get cooking rice!
Basic Rice Cooking Instructions:
Rinse rice in a mesh strainer under cold running water until the water runs clear. This is a very important step because rice has a sticky outer layer that can ruin the rice if not properly washed off before cooking.
Once the rice is rinsed, pour rice into your pot.
Add rice to a dry pot and add water plus salt (if using) to the rice according to the rice-to-liquid ratio described above. For example, if you’re cooking 2 cups of rice you want to use 3 cups of water or broth. Bring rice and liquid to a boil, then turn the heat down to low.
Cover rice with lid (no steam venting necessary), turn the heat up slightly until the rice is at the point where it’s boiling gently- this should be about medium heat on most stovetops.
Once the rice is boiling, reduce heat to low again and let cook for 12 minutes.
Turn off heat and let the rice sit in the pot, covered, for an additional 5-10 minutes.
After the rice has rested, fluff with a fork and serve.
Rice cooking can also be done in a rice cooker or pressure cooker following the same instructions. Rice cookers are a great way to cook rice perfectly every time, and many also have other functions such as slow-cooking or steaming. Pressure cookers are becoming more popular lately due to their speed and energy efficiency; they can cook rice in as little as 5 minutes!
So there you have it- cooking rice is a breeze when you follow these simple steps and guidelines. With a little practice, you’ll be able to make perfect rice every time. And once you’ve got rice down, branch out and try some of our delicious rice recipes!