Pasta & Rice Tips
Varieties of riceDid you know there are over 15,000 varieties of rice?
To prepare polentaThe easiest polenta to prepare is the quick cooking variety. Bring water to the boil in a pot, add the polenta and stir for around five minutes on a moderate heat.
Cooking riceAdd a few drops of limejuice and a tsp. of ghee to rice before boiling to separate each grain. Add 1-2 slices of lemon or a little lemon juice to rice while cooking. It keeps it white and grainy.
Cooking pastaAlways add a tbsp. of oil to plenty of water while boiling pasta of any kind. It will keep them from sticking to each other.
Noodles for toppingInstant noodles, when crushed and deep-fried, make an excellent topping for soups, salads, etc.
Black riceAccording to Chinese legend black rice was once reserved exclusively for the emperor. Black rice is a type of sticky rice, commonly used in Thai and Philippines cooking. A layer of bran covers the rice grains, giving it a brown or blackish color. It is used in desserts, especially those made with coconut milk.
Rice quantityWhen using rice, keep in mind that 1 cup of uncooked long-grain white rice makes 3 cups cooked.
Rice storagePut your white rice in a plastic container with a snug fitting lid to keep bugs and moisture out. Stored this way at room temperature, your rice will last for months.
How to make your rice fluffier and whiterFor fluffier, whiter rice, add one teaspoon of lemon juice per ½ lt of water. To add extra flavor and nutrition to rice, cook it in liquid reserved from cooking vegetables.
CornstarchCornstarch has about twice the thickening power of flour. However, if the liquid is acid, such as citrus juice or apple juice, its thickening power is cut in half. When using with a sauce containing sugar, be sure to add when the sauce is very hot (80 degrees) or the thickening power will be decreased.