Cooking with Basmati Rice

Mumbai-born Suneeta Vaswani has lived in Houston Texas since 1977 and has been teaching Indian cooking classes for almost as long at her home-based cooking school and for the last 15 years as a traveling instructor. She teaches throughout the US and internationally as well.

An authoritative speaker on Indian cuisine, her speaking engagements have included “Food Traditions of India” at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, and at a Rice University course.

Suneeta, an owner of a food company which makes chutneys, is an author of two cookbooks, Easy Indian Cooking, published in 2004 and the just released Complete Book of Indian Cooking, 350 recipes from the regions of India. Click here to visit her website for more information.

Here's a tip from her new book Complete Book of Indian Cooking:

Perfect Steamed Rice

• Large saucepan with tight-fitting lid

2 cups Indian Basmati rice

1 tbsp oil

2 tsp salt, or to taste

1) Place rice in a bowl with plenty of cold water and swish vigorously with fingers. Drain. Repeat process 4 or 5 times until water is fairly clear. Cover with 3 to 4 inches cold water and soak for at least 15 minutes or for up to 2 hours.

2) In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Drain rice and add to saucepan. Stir to coat rice. Add 3½ cups cold water and salt.

3) Cover with a tight-fitting lid and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat as low as possible and cook, covered, without peeking, for 25 minutes.

4) Remove from heat and set lid slightly ajar to allow steam to escape. Let rest for 5 minutes. Gently fluff with fork and carefully spoon onto platter to serve.

Brown rice, a 100 percent whole grain food, joins the recognized ranks of healthful whole grains, according to a recent announcement  from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that will allow brown rice food labels to bear the whole grain health claim.  Click here to read the entire press release from the USA Rice Federation.
Besides being used as a 'salt substitute', adding about 1 teaspoon of white vinegar while cooking white rice makes it fluffy and extra white.
Brown Rice is an excellent source of whole grains.
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