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How to Cook Rice
Excelsior Culinary Students, Cooking a pot of rice is one of those everyday things that everyone has to do, but no-one seems to be able to do well! For most, the biggest problem is rice sticking to the bottom of the pot or burning altogether. With this technique, this is no longer a worry. Since the pot is not over an open flame and the steam will keep the pot moist even after the rice finishes cooking, you can walk away, forget about it, and go take a nap.
Common rice sold in the US is usually fortified with key vitamins and minerals (like Iron and Niacin), most of which will be washed away if the rice is soaked and washed prior to cooking. On the other hand, soaking and washing the rice will result in fluffier, lighter cooked rice, with fuller grain that doesn't stick. Washing will remove a good percentage of the starch in the grain leaving the protein intact.
1.Soak the rice in cold water for 30-60 minutes
2.Rinse/wash in sink until it the water is clear enough to see the rice through it. So basically, keep the water running on low while shaking the rice until the foggy white color turns to clean clear.
3.Measure one cup of washed rice into a pot (or you if you skipped the soaking/washing you can start here with dry rice out of the bag).
4.Pour one and a half cups of cold water into the pot. It depends on the rice and your preference, you may want to add 1.75 cups of water.
5.Place the pot over a moderate to high heat.
6.Turn down the heat to the minimum possible when the rice comes to a rolling boil, and continue heating for five more minutes. Place a well sealed lid on the pot at this time.
-A "rolling boil" is when large bubbles appear that cannot be dissipated by stirring, and will keep breaking the surface. In making rice, the rolling boil is important so that enough steam builds up to completely cook the rice without it being over an open flame.
7.Turn off the heat after five minutes. Place a paper towel between the lid and the pot to avoid moisture buildup. Do not lift the lid as the steam inside will cook the rice through.
-The pot of rice will be fully cooked, light and ready to eat about 10 minutes after the heat is turned off.
8.Take a little taste of the rice to be sure it is cooked (this should be no problem if you measured out the water correctly). If the rice is still a bit crunchy, put the lid back on to retain the steam, and get a little bit of hot water from the tap (not too much, maybe a 1/4 of a cup) and add it to the pot. Put the lid back on and wait another few minutes.