For many people, rice is a staple that's eaten at almost every meal. Most of us just make plain rice and have it alongside some meats and vegetables for an easy and inexpensive meal. Well, it's about time you do more with the humble ingredient and make it shine.
Many of us are used to plain long grain rice as a side dish, but there are so many different types of rice--short grain, glutinous (not gluten-ous, there's no gluten in rice), long grain, and so on--suited for different purposes that you'd be missing out on a whole new world of flavours and textures if you don't expand your repertoire. Even more, rice is great (potentially even better) reheated, depending on the application. Dishes like fried rice or skillet rice actually requires that the rice be a little dry as it will be absorbing more liquid from additional cooking. So, when you get a big bag, just make sure you store it properly, then you can cook up a batch and have it on hand any night of the week.
Here are just a few ideas of what you can do to take your rice to the next level.
Rice doesn't have to be a side dish for a big meal or a component of the main dish. Mixed with some vegetables and/or cooked meats, rice can be made into rice poppers or onigiri as a filling snack that's perfect if you're on the go.
In addition to rice pudding, rice can be mixed in a food processor with chocolates, nuts and dried fruit and made into little truffles or energy bites.
Instead of regular old water, cook rice in a flavourful broth or tea and give it a fragrant and savoury base.
For an aromatic, bold and hearty rice dish, try making a Mexican-inspired dish with ground beef, beans, chilies, cumin, tomatoes and cilantro. You can make it as mild or as spicy as you like.
Ever have those days where you want to find a recipe that uses up a bunch of odds and ends in the fridge? Rice bowls are great for that. A popular Korean dish, bibimbap, can easily be made at home. The dish--flavourful, colourful and full of vegetables--can easily be adapted to your tastes, so you can skip the meat and go completely vegetarian if you wanted to.