I have a friend who when I first met him stated that there is only one way to make rice. That made me laugh – and I still rib him for that statement. I am aware that there are many ways to make rice – he for instance makes amazing coconut & black-bean rice – but I am also aware that lots of people are not confident at cooking rice.
So for those of you who need a little confidence to make light, fluffy, tasty rice this is my favourite way. I learnt it from an Egyptian woman when I was about 7/8 in Cairo and it has always worked for me. Key things are : ♥ rinse the rice ♥ hot oil all over the rice in pan ♥ double water:rice ratio ♥ once the water’s in the pan don’t stir!
Adding a little flavour is my touch to her technique. You can choose which whole spices you want to use, choosing the flavours which will accompany your dish best of all. For those of you who have your failsafe way of cooking rice – please share your techniques :-)!
The Simple & Delightful Side – Rice (with a little spice) – Ingredient list
basmati rice, olive oil, then choose your spices (whole cloves/whole peppercorns/whole cardamon pods/lemongrass crushed/star anise)
The Simple & Delightful Side – Rice (with a little spice) – Process
- Rinse your rice (½ C per person) in a sieve in cold water, bounce it off the side of the sink to get the cloudy water out
- rinse again – repeat until you’re happy all the rice dust is removed
- Boil a kettle
- In a heavy based pan put a glug or two of olive oil (depending on how many you are cooking for)
- Place on a medium-high flame
- Pop your rinsed rice into the hot pan and stir so all the rice is covered in the oil
- Keep stirring – the pan should be hot enough for the rice to want to stick (don’t let it stick!)
- Stir the rice until it starts to go transparent
- Drop in the whole spices you fancy and mix them up with the rice
- Pour in your boiling water (1C per person) it should bubble and hiss due to the heat of the rice and oil in the pan
- DO NOT STIR AT ANY POINT AFTER THIS
- Ensure all the rice at the sides of the pan is pushed down into the water
- Pop the lid on the pan
- Turn the heat down low
- Leave to cook like that for 12 mins
- Keep the lid on until you are ready to serve (serve asap!)
- Pick out the spices before serving they should all surface – none wants to chew on a cardamon pod!