Celebrate National Rice Week
19th – 26th September 2016
This year The Rice Association wants everyone to celebrate the wonder of rice with National Rice Week from 19th to 26th September.
We want to dispel the myth that cooking rice is tricky and its many varieties can be easily combined into any home cooks repetoire. We will happily send you a variety of recipes, from around the world, to highlight to your readers the versatility of cooking with rice.
Rice is one of the world’s greatest gluten-free grains and used in meals, dishes and recipes the world over. Rice is a gorgeous, nutritious, aromatic and versatile grain limited only by a cook’s creativity.
Five things you didn’t know about rice:
Rice is the staple food for over half the world’s population and is a rich source of carbohydrates and is highly digestible. It is gluten free, very low in fat, contains no transfats, saturated fats, sodium or cholesterol and provides a range of vitamins and minerals.
Rice is categorised into three groups: Short, Medium or Long grain depending on the kernel size and shape. However, within these groupings different varieties have different attributes and uses. Also rice is sometimes parboiled (easycook rice) which can make it easier to cook consistently.
Short Grain rice tends to be round in shape, and typically moist when cooked, giving it a sticky consistency perfect for desserts and puddings, as well as sushi. It is a Japonica rice, typically grown in Spain and Italy as well as parts of East Asia and California.
Medium Grain rice is typically used in risotto due to it’s creamy consistency, or dishes using liquid within the cooking method. Again, these grains are grown in southern Europe, mostly in Italy and Spain. Arborio and Carnaroli are well know varieties used to make Risotto
Long Grain rice is the type most commonly found in UK stores. It has longer kernels and is typically eaten in conjunction with savoury dishes such as chili-con-carne or curries. Basmati is the longest rice; it is a fragrant rice grown in India and Pakistan and grains should grow longer when cooked and remain easily separated. Thai rice is typically stickier when cooked and is the perfect accompaniment to dishes such as green curry or Sateh. A standard long grain does not have the aromatic qualities of basmati and can be grown in many parts of the world. USA, South America, Spain, Thailand and Vietnam would be common origins for rice on the UK market
Visit www.loverice.org for the varieties found in each of these groups and nutritional values.
Rice is simple to cook, timing just depends on the type. Here are the two general rules for cooking:
Parboiled/Easy Cook/Pre cooked Rice Add rice to double the amount of boiling water, stir and cover. Reduce to a medium heat and cook for 15-20 minutes. Once cooked, drain and return to the pan (off the heat) to stand for a few minutes. Fluff with a fork.
Wholegrain/Brown Rice Add rice to a large pan of boiling water, add rice and cook for 25-30 minutes. Drain and return to the pan off the heat to stand for a few minutes. Fluff with a fork.
National Rice Week is supported by the Rice Association and its members: Almaya International, Amira Foods, Bestway, East End Foods, Gallo UK, Indo European, Riceworks, Tilda, S&B Herba Foods, SPL UK,Â Surya,Tilda, Veetee and Westmill.