Four delicious & nutritious rice varieties to add to your pantry.
Wild Rice: (recipe above: wild rice & asparagus salad)
Nutrition: Wild rice is actually not a rice, but it is a grass that grows in shallow bodies of water. Good source of zinc, folate, phosphorus and iron. It also packs a high dose of protein and antioxidants.
Taste: Very robust, nutty and earthy in taste. It has a chewy toothy outside texture with a tender inside.
Cooking Tips: Rinse rice in cold water. If you don’t wish to cook the rice you can also soak it until it blooms or sprouts (usually over a 3 day period) then it’s ready to eat. Soaking it will lead to a shorter cook time and this rice does takes longer to cook. Cook in a ratio of 1 cup uncooked rice to 3 cups liquid. The kernels puff open a little when finished cooking.
Serving Ideas: Wild rice is good in soups or mixed with other types of rice in a pilaf. It pairs well with citrus, dried fruit and savory flavors like mushrooms.
Black Rice: (recipe above:black sticky rice pudding)
Nutrition: Also known as forbidden rice or purple rice, it’s purple hue gives it more anthocyanin antioxidants than blueberries. Anthocyanin’s lower risk of cancer and heart disease. This rice is also a good source of vitamin E and iron.
Taste: Nutty and slightly sweet in taste. This rice is sticky and chewy in texture.
Cooking Tips: Rinse the rice under cold water. Soak it for 20 minutes before cooking to cut down on the cooking time. After cooking, let it sit for 10-20 minutes so it absorbs all remaining water. The cooking ratio is 1 cup uncooked rice to 2 cups liquid.
Serving Ideas: This rice is used in desserts like sweet rice puddings or porridges. It is good as a pilaf or salad but also due to it’s sticky texture can be used in sushi making.
Red Bhutanese Rice (recipe above; red bhutanese rice pilaf)
Nutrition: Good source of magnesium, molybdenum, manganese and phosphorus.
Taste: Nutty and rich in taste. Soft and slightly sticky in texture.
Cooking Tips: Rinse in cold water and soak for 10 minutes. This rice cooks up quickly. The cooking ratio is 1 cup uncooked rice to 2 cups liquid.
Serving Ideas: Pairs well with spicy foods and savory vegetables like mushrooms and eggplant. Good in pilafs, curries or stir-fry.
Green Bamboo Rice (recipe above: green bamboo rice risotto)
Nutrition: This is short grain white rice infused with bamboo juice which gives it the green color, added nutrition & taste. The bamboo juice packs it with chlorophyll and vitamin B.
Taste: This rice is fragrant and has a subtle jasmine green tea & bamboo taste. The texture is fluffy but also slightly sticky.
Cooking Tips: Don’t rinse this rice. Cooking ratio is 1 cup of uncooked rice to 2 cups of liquid. Let this rice sit for 15-20 minute after done cooking.
Serving Ideas: This rice can be substituted for any recipe you use white rice. It’s green color gives it a special visual appeal. It can be used in sushi making and risottos or in rice puddings due to it’s slightly sticky texture.