Perfect Brown Rice is one of the staples of my packed lunch routine – a half cup (or a full cup if I am having a hungry day) as the base for a packed lunch salad makes the difference between 4 pm munchies and seeing me through till dinner.
But for years I have moaned about how long it takes to cook and how it stays as hard as bullets forever then “flowers” and goes all soggy – which is not nice as a salad base as what you really want are tender grains with a bit of a chew left to them. Its certainly NOT a grain you want to be cooking at breakfast time to use for lunch!
Till my Armenian friend came on Skype and gave me a lesson in cooking the perfect brown rice – a hands off cooking method that produces perfectly cooked, separate grains that don’t stick together and remain chewy when used in other dishes.
So – choose your pot … best pot is a heavy bottomed pan so that the grains don’t stick to the bottom. But it MUST have a close fitting lid. So my trusty cast iron pot is called into action yet again.
….. but until there is only a tablespoon or so of water left in the bottom of the pot. The grains will still be pretty chewy at this stage but don’t worry. Pop the lid back on and leave it all to continue steaming for about 10 minutes (if you want hot rice) or leave it till it goes cold if you plan to store in the fridge.
This is a 1.5 litre box – so you can see that one cup of brown rice really grows when you cook it. After steaming the grains soften up and keep wonderfully separate – no soggy, claggy rice that begins to smell funny as it cools.
Perfect Brown Rice …… so simple to do – but so wonderful to have on hand for quick meals through the week.
So what store cupboard staples can we all get in the habit of having cooked and on hand to make our mid-week meal prep easier, quicker and cheaper?