Saturday, August 2, 2008

Cooking Jasmine Rice

What is the most necessary ingredient in a Thai meal that you can never miss ?

Yes. It’s rice!

There are many kinds of rice in the market that you can buy, but the rice for Thai food must be Jasmine rice. The other kind of rice will never give the same unique taste as Jasmine rice. Jasmine rice quality is different from brand to brand. It’s up to the season when the rice is grown. Absolutely we have no control over it, but we can fix it when the rice is not cooked right.

There are a few tips that you can use to cook the rice just ‘right’.

How the perfect cooked rice should be? Taste it. It should be soft enough but not mushy. It should not be too sticky or hard. All you need is a rice cooker. A small one can do a perfect job as the big one.

When you bought a rice cooker, you will see a measuring cup that comes along with the rice cooker. This is the easiest way to cook rice and the result is always perfect. The secret is the amount of water you put into the pot. Use this measurement :

1. If you put in a cup of rice, add water until it reaches 2 cups as measured in the rice cooker. ( They have marks inside the pot for you to measure already ). Always add water more than the rice for one cup. For example, 3 cups of rice with 4 cups of water.

Spread the rice all over the pot so it’s at the same level. The rice will be cooked throughly.

3. When the rice has just cooked. Don’t open the pot yet, let it cool down for 5 minutes and you will have a perfect cooked rice. The reason is that when the rice has just been cooked. It can be mushy a little bit at the time and some of it will stick to the bottom of the pot. Letting it cool down will help. After that fluff it up and it is ready to eat!

Fluff it up like this.

If the method mention above doesn’t give a satisfying results. There must be two reasons :

1. The rice is mushy. It can rarely happen but if it happened, it’s becuase the rice is very new from the year it has been collected. Use less water when you cook it next time.

2. The rice is hard and not cooked. It can happen sometimes when the rice has been keep for so long. It’s the old rice. Even the same brand can have different type of rice sometimes. ( old or new ) I experienced it myself before. If It’s not cooked, Sprinkle water on the rice and warm it up in the microwave until it’s cooked. Next time when you are going to cook the rest of it, use more water ( add about 1 more cup from usual ).

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