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why do you rinse rice before cooking

To rinse or not to rinse: There are so many opinions and types of rice, the answer is daunting. Here, we break it down for you. Because like the answers to lifeБs most lofty questions, there is no easy single answer. Some people believe that not rinsing yields rice with a sticky texture. Harold McGee, author of
On Food and Cooking, is in this camp: БAn initial rinsing of the dry rice removes surface starch and thus a source of added stickiness. Б For most long-grain and medium-grain rice, then, rinsing is a good idea. But if youБre using short-grain white rice to make a risotto, no rinsing is necessaryБthe extra starch creates the essential creamy texture. When white rice is milled, the outer husk and bran layers are removed to produce translucent grains, but this also removes some vitamins and nutrients. To make milled white rice healthier, the United States requires processors to enrich it with vitamins and other nutrients, which appear as a dusty layer on the individual grains. If you want to also preserve those nutrients, washing is a no-no. There was a time when all white rice was processed with talc, a mineral composed of hydrated magnesium silicate (sounds tasty, right? ) to give it a whiter, cleaner appearance. Back then, rice needed a rinse to remove this talc. Most white rice grown in the U. S. is no longer milled that way, but some imported rices have been processed with talc, powdered glucose, or rice powder (all safe to eat, but still).


Because of this, Beth Hensperger and Julie Kaufmann, authors of The Ultimate Rice Cooker Book, suggest leaving domestic rice as is, but rinsing imported rice (like jasmine and basmati) to improve the flavor and avoid the rice turning gluey. Most other recipes for Asian rice donБt call for rinsing, since a certain amount of stickiness is a good thing. Rather, they have you soak the rice before cooking. ItБs important to note that soaking rice is completely different from rinsing. Soaking gives the grains a head start on cooking and yields a better textureБitБs a common step in cooking basmati, which needs to be rinsed and soaked. Greg Massa, owner of, a family farm in Northern California producing organic brown rice, notes that some people like rinsing brown rice to remove any bran dust before cooking. Bran dust doesnБt affect the rice as it cooks, so removing it (or not) is really more of a personal preference. From here on out, IБll take a pass on rinsing, but count me in on soaking Asian rices. 1. Kimchi and Shrimp Fried Rice Tired of the same olБ rice pilaf? HereБs a way to use up that extra kimchi you have from some other dish and whip together an interesting, and totally satisfying meal that doesnБt take forever. ItБs got that powerful tang coupled with a full-flavored savory essence that speaks for itself. Get our. 2. Easy Rice Pudding An oldie but a goodie. ThereБs nothing fancy about this classic dessert, but oh, is it good, hitting just the right notes of creamy and sweet comfort.


Add raisins and cinnamon if you want, or keep it purely vanilla (literally). Get our. 3. Wild Rice Jambalaya Wild rice takes a turn in the lovely Cajun dance of andouille sausage, shrimp, and peppers in this easy one-pot dish. YouБll need to get your Dutch oven for this one, or at least a heavy stew-type pot. Get our. 4. Sweet Chile-Chicken Rice Bowl Sweet and spicy, what a combo. Add savory to that flavor coupling, and pow! WeБre done for. WeБve fallen in love with this dish, which means takeout can never happen again. Because thereБs this. The knowledge canБt be undone. Get our. 5. Tomato-Basil Arancini Affectionately called rice balls in some circles, these Italian croquettes have many versions, some including spiced, ground meat in the middle too. Here, you use arborio rice, which is a short-grain Italian rice. The mozzarella and Parmesan make it so oozy and gooey-great. Sun-dried tomatoes and basil, yeah, theyБre nice too. Get our. 6. Stuffed Red Bell Peppers with Ground Chicken We have a fascination with ourselves with food stuffed into other food. Good thing the chain doesnБt continue farther up than that! Anyways, stuffed peppers are fun. HereБs a well-balanced meal all packed into a ruby jewelry box of sorts. Get our. 7. Thai Red Curry with Kabocha Squash DonБt let the Kabocha squash part of this recipe deter you. If you canБt find that particular squash, just go with butternut or acorn.


You could even do frozen if itБs not the right season for it. This dish is too flavorful to miss. Get our. Б First published by Leena Trivedi-Grenier on April 7, 2014; updated by Amy Sowder on August 3, 2016. Б Head Image: Often when you're cooking rice you want distinct grains of rice and for your rice to have texture. In the case of Chinese fried rice for example, you specifically want your rice grains to not stick to one another. If you're talking white rice especially, there will be a lot more loose starch that will form a thickish paste if if you don't rinse it away. I imagine there was a time when there were a lot more impurities (dirt, dust, bugs, etc. ). I don't know if that's necessarily the case these days with modern manufacturing. If you're concerned about your source, then this may be a factor for you. There's also the that suggest rinsing to reduce levels of something like arsenic (see on arsenic in rice). I think 1. is your bigger factor here though. It removes nutrients. This is true for fortified rice. See on the fortification process. Note, whole grain/brown rices are less often fortified (I want to say they're not fortified, but I actually don't know for sure). So it would depend on what kind of product you're buying and where it came from. You actually want to keep the extra starch. This is the case for things like risotto where the starch is what gives the dish it's creaminess. that talks about the process.

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