I've REALLY been enjoying eating rice recently. Growing up, we didn't eat much rice, and we on occasion enjoyed Minute Rice.
My dad liked to make Rice and Raisins--yum! In the states, we had a rice cooker, and I liked to make stir fry and the requisite sticky rice (Calrose), or Jasmine Rice. Pretty easy. Every so often I would make whole grain rice, but for the most part I stuck with the Asian theme. Back when I started working at the Canadian School, I remember talking to one of the coordinators about rice, and how important good rice was. And I realized I was making bad rice, using the same method I'd been using to make sticky rice. I was able to "get by" because our faixinera was making meals for us, and I was just reheating her yummy rice. After we had to let her go (another story), I had to find a way to make good rice. And here's my method! And, it's not perfect, but a big step for me :-)
1. Wash about 2 cups of rice in a colander. Rub the rice a bit, let the water flow through until clearer (not so white).
2. In a medium sized pot, heat about a tablespoon of oil. Add tempero (or "seasoning"). You can buy some at all grocery stores/markets in Brazil, or you can make your own by mashing up some peeled garlic and onion, and mixing it with salt. This is an important step. Let it cook in the oil for about 5 minutes.
3. Shake the excess water off the rice, and add it to the pot. Let it cook for about 5 minutes.
4. Add about 3 cups of water. I never measure, I just check to make sure that the water is about one knuckle over the rice. Cover the pot, and cook for about 20 minutes. I try not to open the pot, but sometimes I have to check it...
I've found that this makes fluffy, moist and flavorful rice. And right now, I am pretty much eating this daily (like most Brazilians)! And I feel pretty proud that I have finally figured out how to make decent rice. Add it to the list of things I've accomplished the past year. Tchau!
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