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Trick to cooking asian rice?

Trick to cooking asian rice?
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  • Trick to cooking asian rice?

    Post #1 - February 8th, 2005, 1:15 pm
    Post #1 - February 8th, 2005, 1:15 pm Post #1 - February 8th, 2005, 1:15 pm
    I've about given up. When I first moved up to Uptown, I bought a 5lb bag of "sweet rice" (I forget the brand). I have NEVER been able to get it right--always way too much gooey starch in between the grains. Last night my cooking companion was washing it for a good half hour and the water wasn't clear--I didn't want to waste any moer so I just said "to heck with it" and cooked the stuff. Still gooey/sticky.

    Is there a trick to doing this relatively quickly? Should I just give up and, authenticity be damned, buy basmati or jasmine rice?
    Aaron
  • Post #2 - February 8th, 2005, 1:26 pm
    Post #2 - February 8th, 2005, 1:26 pm Post #2 - February 8th, 2005, 1:26 pm
    I'm not certain what "sweet rice" is, but my guess is that you purchased short-grain, "glutinous" (I know, there's no gluten in rice) rice prized for its starchy stickiness -- as in the rice used for many Korean or Japanese rice dishes; the stuff eaten in N. Thailand (as in, Sticky Rice); the stuff used for all sorts of Asian deserts; Italian rices such as arborio or carnoli used for risotto; Valencian Spanish rices such as calasparra and bomba, etc.

    The sticky rices are generally pricier than other rices, and you'd be hard pressed to keep it from being sticky. Try a less sticky, longer grain rice, like aged jasmine or long-grained rice from a latino store. Of course, the rices you mention, basmati and jasmine, are both Asian.

    PS, there was a thread on cooking rice well not too long ago. There are lots of methods that work, but a particularly good way to ensure distinct, intact grains is to toast the rice lightly in some kind of fat before cooking. Zim noted that the Indian technique is very similar to the Cuban style I grew up on.

    Or consider a computerized rice cooker. They work.
    Last edited by JeffB on February 8th, 2005, 1:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #3 - February 8th, 2005, 1:31 pm
    Post #3 - February 8th, 2005, 1:31 pm Post #3 - February 8th, 2005, 1:31 pm
    Jeff's probably right- it sounds like you picked a short grain, sticky rice. Note that there are different kinds of Jasmine rice-- if you don't want it to be sticky you have to find a long grain variety.

    Also, you can control the stickiness to a small degree by how much water you use when cooking it.
  • Post #4 - February 8th, 2005, 1:55 pm
    Post #4 - February 8th, 2005, 1:55 pm Post #4 - February 8th, 2005, 1:55 pm
    Sweet rice is different from even the regular Japanese/Korean/sushi rice. Sweet rice is much gooier & stickier than the regular rice. What brand was it? After you've rinsed the rice several times, the water should be fairly clear - still a touch cloudy though.
  • Post #5 - February 8th, 2005, 2:04 pm
    Post #5 - February 8th, 2005, 2:04 pm Post #5 - February 8th, 2005, 2:04 pm
    Thanks for the tips. Sorry about the subject--i realize jasmine and basmati are also Asian but I didn't know what else to say without the bag in front of me. I'll post it when I get home.
    Aaron
  • Post #6 - October 26th, 2010, 10:29 pm
    Post #6 - October 26th, 2010, 10:29 pm Post #6 - October 26th, 2010, 10:29 pm
    HI,

    I bought Japanese style rice today at H-Mart. It has the dreaded tag: New rice. This is rice that has been recently harvested with a higher moisture content.

    Long ago, I read when rice is new it needs less water. As it ages and dries, you add additional water.

    My first encounter with new rice was some years ago. A friend and I bought the same bags of new rice together. A few days later, we reported to each other on the mushiest rice we ever encountered. After some experimentation, we found how to work with this rice.

    My default rice preparation is two cups of water to one cup of rice. While I intellectually understand you need to use less water, is there a rule of thumb on quantities of water for new rice?

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #7 - October 27th, 2010, 6:29 am
    Post #7 - October 27th, 2010, 6:29 am Post #7 - October 27th, 2010, 6:29 am
    My Chinese Sister-in-law just sticks her finger into the rice cooker to measure the water. Works every time.
  • Post #8 - October 27th, 2010, 7:43 am
    Post #8 - October 27th, 2010, 7:43 am Post #8 - October 27th, 2010, 7:43 am
    mhill95149 wrote:My Chinese Sister-in-law just sticks her finger into the rice cooker to measure the water. Works every time.


    I do that too! Something I guess I picked up from my mom. Rinse 3x, and stick your finger in the water so that the tip just touches the top of the rice. The water should reach the 1st crease of your finger... No idea how scientific this is, but it works every time!
  • Post #9 - October 27th, 2010, 8:06 am
    Post #9 - October 27th, 2010, 8:06 am Post #9 - October 27th, 2010, 8:06 am
    CrazyC wrote:
    mhill95149 wrote:My Chinese Sister-in-law just sticks her finger into the rice cooker to measure the water. Works every time.


    I do that too! Something I guess I picked up from my mom. Rinse 3x, and stick your finger in the water so that the tip just touches the top of the rice. The water should reach the 1st crease of your finger... No idea how scientific this is, but it works every time!

    HI,

    Does this apply new rice, too?

    I read around where they suggested reducing water by 10 percent for new rice.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #10 - October 27th, 2010, 8:57 am
    Post #10 - October 27th, 2010, 8:57 am Post #10 - October 27th, 2010, 8:57 am
    I guess it depends on digit length!! I use the same method as described above (definitely picked up from my mother) - stick my index finger in until it touches the top of the rice, but I only let it go 2/3 of the way to the 1st crease. It's never failed me. Works for both short and long-grain rice. I suspect I must subconsciously adjust the amount based on a lifetime of cooking rice...
  • Post #11 - October 27th, 2010, 2:42 pm
    Post #11 - October 27th, 2010, 2:42 pm Post #11 - October 27th, 2010, 2:42 pm
    Puppy wrote:I guess it depends on digit length!! I use the same method as described above (definitely picked up from my mother) - stick my index finger in until it touches the top of the rice, but I only let it go 2/3 of the way to the 1st crease. It's never failed me. Works for both short and long-grain rice. I suspect I must subconsciously adjust the amount based on a lifetime of cooking rice...


    Well Puppy, we are going to have to compare fingers when we meet! :)
  • Post #12 - October 27th, 2010, 3:52 pm
    Post #12 - October 27th, 2010, 3:52 pm Post #12 - October 27th, 2010, 3:52 pm
    I just measured the spot on my finger where I think I usually have the water up to, and it's ~19-20mm from the tip of my finger. Granted, to be more scientific, I'd have to actually prepare some rice and dip my finger in the water, but I'm still at work... :)
  • Post #13 - October 27th, 2010, 4:51 pm
    Post #13 - October 27th, 2010, 4:51 pm Post #13 - October 27th, 2010, 4:51 pm
    Puppy wrote:I guess it depends on digit length!! I use the same method as described above (definitely picked up from my mother) - stick my index finger in until it touches the top of the rice, but I only let it go 2/3 of the way to the 1st crease. It's never failed me. Works for both short and long-grain rice. I suspect I must subconsciously adjust the amount based on a lifetime of cooking rice...


    My decidedly non-Asian self has been struggling with Asian rice for a while, had heard this method and tried it with terrific success. Annoying that it's so easy and I had been making it so difficult.

    Not that this helps the OP; I would guess that the problem is the type of rice, as has been noted before. You might try just going with it and making some sticky rice dishes like dumplings or banana rice cakes.

    When I buy rice for sushi, I either find one that says "sushi rice" on the label, or Calrose, an American variety that is common. The blog Just Hungry has a lot of info on Japanese rice.
  • Post #14 - October 28th, 2010, 6:45 am
    Post #14 - October 28th, 2010, 6:45 am Post #14 - October 28th, 2010, 6:45 am
    For glutinous/sticky rice, I've always steamed it. I rinse the rice in the morning and soak it all day, then steam it with the rice spread out over a bamboo steamer until it's translucent. This seems to produce rice with the right amount of 'stickiness' (i.e. not too gummy) You can actually buy sticky rice steamers at many of the Asian grocery stores around Argyle (I'm fairly certain they still have them at Golden Pacific)--I've resisted because I don't want to get in trouble for bringing yet another Asian cooking implement home, although it is tempting...

    Sticky rice steamer
    Image
  • Post #15 - November 1st, 2010, 6:57 am
    Post #15 - November 1st, 2010, 6:57 am Post #15 - November 1st, 2010, 6:57 am
    Cathy2 wrote:Does this apply new rice, too?
    Article on shinmai/new-harvest rice in Japan Times, including cooking instructions.
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #16 - November 1st, 2010, 8:43 am
    Post #16 - November 1st, 2010, 8:43 am Post #16 - November 1st, 2010, 8:43 am
    Gary,

    Thank you! This is very helpful on navigating what to do.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #17 - April 14th, 2022, 7:26 pm
    Post #17 - April 14th, 2022, 7:26 pm Post #17 - April 14th, 2022, 7:26 pm
    HI,

    I met a Korean woman today who mixes rice to her taste. I later learned she is book author who wrote The Vegan Korean. Her preferred rice combination:
    - 1 part Brown rice (small grain, Korean style)
    - 1 part sweet Brown rice (small grain, Korean style)
    - 2-3 tablespoons of forbidden rice

    She rinses her brown rice three times before cooking.

    She showed the index finger method for measuring water, because this was brown rice she added to the second joint.

    I have used forbidden rice, though usually in a larger quantity. She advised this would make it a nice purple color.

    Her Mother has a modified version:
    - 1 part Brown rice (small grain, Korean style)
    - 1 part sweet white rice (small grain, Korean style)
    - 2-3 tablespoons of the forbidden rice

    I never was aware of anyone mixing rice to cook together until today.

    Regards,
    CAthy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #18 - April 15th, 2022, 9:15 am
    Post #18 - April 15th, 2022, 9:15 am Post #18 - April 15th, 2022, 9:15 am
    Cathy2 wrote:I never was aware of anyone mixing rice to cook together until today.

    Regards,
    CAthy2



    I do that with a half-half combination of Canilla parboiled Rice and Sella parboiled Basmati. But I do that because I am a Cheap Bastard :lol: !
  • Post #19 - April 15th, 2022, 10:17 am
    Post #19 - April 15th, 2022, 10:17 am Post #19 - April 15th, 2022, 10:17 am
    HI,

    Just for fun, I made a mixed rice with what I had on hand:
    - Jasmine brown rice
    - Sweet short grain Chinese rice
    - forbidden rice

    It is definitely purple!

    Regards,
    CAthy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #20 - April 15th, 2022, 2:45 pm
    Post #20 - April 15th, 2022, 2:45 pm Post #20 - April 15th, 2022, 2:45 pm
    Re mixing rice, has Ming Tsai's "house rice" been mentioned? That's what he says is his way of getting kids to eat brown rice. It's equal parts brown and white rice, cooked according to the normal white rice time (whatever that is, depending on whether you're using the stovetop or rice cooker or pressure cooker), but the white rice only has to be rinsed, whereas the brown rice has to be soaked for an hour in advance.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #21 - April 15th, 2022, 4:33 pm
    Post #21 - April 15th, 2022, 4:33 pm Post #21 - April 15th, 2022, 4:33 pm
    Not going to try the finger method for the water in my rice, because it's geared to human-sized fingers.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #22 - April 15th, 2022, 4:42 pm
    Post #22 - April 15th, 2022, 4:42 pm Post #22 - April 15th, 2022, 4:42 pm
    Katie wrote:Re mixing rice, has Ming Tsai's "house rice" been mentioned? That's what he says is his way of getting kids to eat brown rice. It's equal parts brown and white rice, cooked according to the normal white rice time (whatever that is, depending on whether you're using the stovetop or rice cooker or pressure cooker), but the white rice only has to be rinsed, whereas the brown rice has to be soaked for an hour in advance.

    The soaking step of the brown rice could be the great equalizer in getting an even cook.

    My combo rice today suffered from two vastly different styles of rice: Jasmine and short grain. Jasmine obviously takes longer than short grain and brown rice Jasmine even longer. I did bring water to the second knuckle, though a little less would have been better. It was on the mushy side and very purple.

    I brought the rice cooker bowl to the table, when they saw this purple composition, their reaction was, "This is rice?"

    Tomorrow it will be made into fried rice of some sort.

    Regards,
    CAthy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #23 - April 22nd, 2022, 7:08 am
    Post #23 - April 22nd, 2022, 7:08 am Post #23 - April 22nd, 2022, 7:08 am
    Indianbadger wrote:parboiled Basmati

    I'm curious about parboiled Basmati rice. Seen it in big bags at Lewis and ShopnSave but wanted to know more before making the investment. Is the difference between parboiled and not Basmati similar to the difference between Golden Canilla and regular long grain? Harder grains that don't stick together?
  • Post #24 - April 23rd, 2022, 5:37 pm
    Post #24 - April 23rd, 2022, 5:37 pm Post #24 - April 23rd, 2022, 5:37 pm
    90% of the rice that we cook at home is Thai Jasmine rice and the only brand that we really like is the Three Ladies brand. During the pandemic, we tried several jasmine rices from Vietnam but they were definitely lower quality.

    I was lucky to get a 25# bag of Three Ladies on sale at Super H Mart in Mesa, AZ for $16.99. While there are many ways to cook rice, generally, I toast the rice in a sauce pan before adding hot water, boiling, reducing the heat and covering for 20 minutes. Yes, I am too cheap to buy a rice cooker.

    We keep a little arborio in stock for risotto. We also keep some sticky rice on hand for when i make mango sticky rice which is one of the more complicated and tricky recipes that I have attempted.

    Life would have been less stressful had I purchased 2-3 25# bags of rice at Jungle Jim's on 3-15-20 where they had 20 pallets of rice.
  • Post #25 - April 26th, 2022, 11:05 am
    Post #25 - April 26th, 2022, 11:05 am Post #25 - April 26th, 2022, 11:05 am
    I hate mixed rice because growing up, our rice cooker was occasionally filled with a mix of rice and dried beans. I recall my folks telling me it was healthier for us. But looking back, I now realize that the issue was the beans were never cooked properly since they needed more time to cook.

    Also, Arirang restaurant next to hmart in Niles serves individual portions of mixed purple rice in a stone pot with every meal. The food is decent but the rice is usually the star.
  • Post #26 - April 26th, 2022, 11:27 am
    Post #26 - April 26th, 2022, 11:27 am Post #26 - April 26th, 2022, 11:27 am
    jlawrence01 wrote:Yes, I am too cheap to buy a rice cooker.

    My first rice cooker was a loan. If I liked it, I could keep it and I was pretty sure I would return it. I quickly discovered the beauty of setting it up to cook and returning later to a pot of warm rice. Potentially, I might start the rice a few hours before lunch, then cook the meal without any attention to the rice.

    I inherited a Zojirushi, which I would have not bought, because the simple rice pot works fine. It does take longer to cook rice. It makes a super oat meal. I can set it on a timer on when to begin, especially when Basmati rice needs to soak before cooking.

    I eat rice regularly enough it earns its keep.

    Regards,
    CAthy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #27 - April 26th, 2022, 11:20 pm
    Post #27 - April 26th, 2022, 11:20 pm Post #27 - April 26th, 2022, 11:20 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:
    jlawrence01 wrote:Yes, I am too cheap to buy a rice cooker.

    My first rice cooker was a loan. If I liked it, I could keep it and I was pretty sure I would return it. I quickly discovered the beauty of setting it up to cook and returning later to a pot of warm rice. Potentially, I might start the rice a few hours before lunch, then cook the meal without any attention to the rice.

    I inherited a Zojirushi, which I would have not bought, because the simple rice pot works fine. It does take longer to cook rice. It makes a super oat meal. I can set it on a timer on when to begin, especially when Basmati rice needs to soak before cooking.

    I eat rice regularly enough it earns its keep.

    Regards,
    CAthy2



    I can buy nearly any of them at the many local thrift stores and estate sales for $10. However, SWMBO (She who must be obeyed) has vetoed any more small appliance purchases since the Keurig Duo fiasco.
  • Post #28 - April 27th, 2022, 7:35 am
    Post #28 - April 27th, 2022, 7:35 am Post #28 - April 27th, 2022, 7:35 am
    There's definitely a lot of variety to the quality of rice cookers. Our old one was a Zojirushi, and worked great until we broke it (most models are not particularly gravity-tolerant).
    That year I put a rice cooker on my holiday wish list, got two, and returned the easily-returnable one rather than the better one. The one I kept unfortunately tends to overcook rice, we've found that adding a little extra water and checking for doneness manually helps, but it's things the device should be doing itself.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #29 - April 27th, 2022, 3:18 pm
    Post #29 - April 27th, 2022, 3:18 pm Post #29 - April 27th, 2022, 3:18 pm
    I had a super-simple and inexpensive ($40?) Faber rice cooker that worked great, making rice that turned out right every time with no supervision, for at least 20 years before it finally decided it was ready to quit. For a while afterward, I researched Zojirushi replacements, but then I started making rice in my Instant Pot, which also turns out rice right every time with no supervision, so I don't need a separate rice cooker. I get my rice and water proportions and IP times for specific rice types from this twosleevers.com web page.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"

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