Basmati rice means the "queen of fragrance" This rice is grown in the foothills of the Himalayas for thousands of years. Its perfumy, nut-like flavor and aroma makes it the most expensive rice in the world and has been the favorite rice of emperors, poets and rajah's.
(Rice in the picture cooked with Regal Rice Pilaf and 1/2 tsp. turmeric)
Making Perfect Rice
- For every cup of rice, use 1-1/2 (for shorter grain rice) to 2 cups of water for longer grain varieties.
- You want a large pot with a heavy base for the most even cooking and a tight lid for steam cooking rice.
- Rinse, strain the rice and it to the pot. Add water.
- Adding a bit of ghee at this time will also help keep the grains from sticking together.
- Bring the water to a rolling boil.
- Turn heat to med-low, cover pot with the tight Now turn off the heat.
- Do not open the lid. Leave undisturbed with the lid on, for at least 5 minutes and for as long as 15.
- This results in a uniform texture.
FRAGRANT RICE - Use Ajika Regal Pilaf Spices and Dried Fruit and Nut Blend. Heat 1 tsp. ghee and saute 1 tbsp. Regal Pilaf Blend. Add 1 cup of rice and 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Lower heat to low, cover tightly and cook for 12 minutes. Remove the spices before serving or serve with spices as we do in India.
YELLOW RICE - Add a pinch of turmeric or saffron when boiling the rice and the rice will get a golden hue.
SAFFRON RICE Soak a few strands of saffron in 3 tablespoons of water for 30 minutes. When the rice is done, pour the soaking water and the saffron over the cooking rice with a teaspoon and return the lid to the pot so that aroma does not escape.
FLAVORED RICE - Use the spices in the garam masala blend for aromatic flavored rice. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in the pot in which you will cook the rice, and fry onions until deep brown. Add the spices and the rice and saute for 1 minute. Now add water and cook with above directions. (add about 5 whole spices of any variety from the blend for a cup of rice)
ONE DISH RICE MEAL - Use the Biryani Spice Blend with chicken or vegetables to make one dish meal. Serve with a yogurt salad or raita and fresh salsa of tomatoes and cucumber.
© Kavita Mehta
photo credit Kavita and Vinay Mehta