When it comes to cooking of rice, there are always new and different ways of garnishing it without making one feel bored. Brown rice is another type of rice that can be prepared in a very simple but delicious way as long as it is clean and free of sand. One disadvantage of brown rice is that, it is starchy and may contain some tiny stones, but this is not in all cases, you can still get a brown rice that has not or less sand in it. The white rice was initially brown rice which is now transformed from the brown to the white it is now and somehow, the white rice went through a refining process, which also means that the fibre, protein, calcium, thiamine, magnesium and potassium in it were partly removed if not all.
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What is so important about brown rice?
Brown rice is always referred to whole grain rice with a nutty flavour, it has all of it nutrients intact and it is known to stop beriberi (a thiamine deficiency) and it is more nutritious than the white rice which has gone through some refining process with an added chemicals.
The brown rice has both the long and the short grains, and is it healthy for consumption and even aid in proper digestion and weight management. Since brown rice is not refined, it can take a little longer time to become soft compared to the white rice, but, this is dependent on the type of brown rice because there are some can even cook within a blink of an eye.
Brown rice can be stirred fried, prepared as a side dish to potato chips, prepare as jollof rice, palm oil riceand cooked as white rice to be served with stew, beans porridge or stuffed pepper soup.and it can also be cooked with coconut; that is,as coconut rice.Knowing how to prepare brown rice without it becoming soggy and sticky is one of those kitchen credits and the chef needs to be awarded for such ability.
Todays post is just going to be something very simple and short, I am going to be making vegetable rice. the vegetables am going to use for this rice are my left over vegies, I did not just want to go far in purchasing so much of them and I decided to use what I have at hand even at the moment. For the rice, long grain white rice is still good for this recipe, but I personally wanted to have the nutty taste of locally made brown rice, which is why I choose to prepare vegetable brown rice, and I also wanted to garnish it mixed vegetable and few proteins like crayfish and smoked fish, you can use any type of rice and ingredients you have in your kitchen. Here is another recipe for brown rice and you can read more on the health benefits of brown rice, you may also like designer rice.
Tips on how to cook a perfect brown rice
- Do not add too much water to cook the rice; the water should be slightly above or at the same level with the rice.
- Do not stir the rice from time to time; stirring it often will turn the rice mushy and gummy.
- You can either parboil the brown rice for 5 minutes before washing dust out or boil hot water and pure into it to soak the rice for 5-10 minutes before washing it out completely.
- When you want to finally stir the rice, always try fluffing it with fork, to separate the grain from each other and not pressing them with the spoon.
- Rinse the rice until the water turns clear to get rid of excess starch and dust.
- If you are parboiling brown rice, it should not bubble for more than 5 minutes on the stove or you can just soak it with hot water before rinsing it out.
How to cook vegetable rice
Making rice with different vegetables is one those healthy rice dishes, the procedures are very easy and just straight forward. The only difficult task here is on the side of stir frying the rice with the vegetables, which might take a little time and your and closeness is also needed, however, it can be fun too, seeing your cooked brown rice coming out singly and without sticking on each other.
What you really need to do in this recipe as the first thing, is to season and cook your brown rice or whatever rice you might be using, then fry your vegies for few minutes before stirring in your cooked rice. This process seems similar to stirred fried method of fried rice, the only difference is the spices used and the absent of golden colour. This vegetable rice does not have the golden colour of fried rice; it is just a combination of different vegetables and some spices which makes it colourful and really distinctive in taste. Just before you prepare this vegetable rice, you will need the below ingredients, but feel free to add more or reduce from the ingredients.
Ingredients for preparing vegetable rice
- 2 cups of brown rice
- 4 medium size carrots
- cup green beans
- runner peas (optional)
- 1 green bell pepper
- 25cl vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 table spoons ground crayfish
- 3 chicken stock cubes
- 1 medium bulb onions
- 1 table spoon thyme
- 1 medium size smoked fish
- 3 scotch bonnet peppers or black pepper powder
- Salt to taste
Direction on how to prepare vegetable rice
- Wash your brown rice with hot water until the water changes into clean water
- Season the rice with salt, 2 chicken stock cubes, onions, pepper, garlic and crayfish and add water to slightly cover the rice and stir for the seasoning to combine.
- Place the rice on a stove to cook until the water starts to dry and dont stir it at all.
- While the water is on heat, wash and chop carrots, green beans, onions and green pepper, if you are using frozen peas, quickly refrozen it and keep aside.
- Check the rice to see if it is soft, if it is not, add more water and cover it to dry
- When the rice is finally soft and the water evaporates, bring it off from heat.
- Put a pan or a wide pot on heat, add vegetable oil into it and let it get hot.
- Stir in chopped onions, green beans, peas, carrots and bell peppers. Fry these vegetables in the oil for 3 minutes and season with salt and the remaining stock cube.
- After 3 minutes, lower the heat and divide the vegetables into equal parts
- Scoop the rice in batches into the vegetable and fry continuously until you notice the grains separating from one another.
- Add more rice and vegetables and stir from time to time till all the rice and the vegetables are well incorporated.
- When you are done, let the rice sit on a low heat to enable the flavour diffuse more
- Put of heat and serve it while its warm.
Note: if you dont have the patience to go through this process, simply season your rice and cook with a little vegetable oil and when the rice is cooked, stir in all the vegetables into the rice. Leave the rice to dry completely with the vegetables on a low heat until the vegetables are steamed, after that, serve your vegetable rice with salad, or coleslaw.
Steps on how to cook vegetable rice
1. Soak brown rice with hot water, after 5 minutes wash it out of the water and drain. You can parboil the rice for 5minute instead, then rinse till you notice a clear water.
2. Season brown rice with 2 stock cubes, onions, pepper, salt garlic, thyme,crayfish; add meat stock or water, also add smoked fish and stir to mix it well.
3.Place the rice on a stove to cook until the water goes down and don’t stir the rice again till it dries, tp prevent it from becoming soggy.
4. While the rice is hea cooking, chopall the vegetables and keep aside.
5. Check the rice to see if it is soft, if it is not, add more water and cover it to dry
6. When the rice is finally soft and the water evaporates, bring it off from heat.
7. Put a pan or a wide pot on heat, add vegetable oil into it and let it become hot.
8. Stir in chopped onions, green beans, peas, carrots and bell peppers. Fry these vegetables in the oil for 3 minutes and season with salt and the remaining stock cube.
9. After 3 minutes, lower the heat and divide the vegetables into equal parts.
10. Scoop the rice in batches into the vegetable and fry continuously until you notice the grains separating from one another.
11. Add more rice and vegetables and stir from time to time till all the rice and the vegetables are well incorporated.
12. When you are done frying the rice with the vegetables, let the rice remain on top of the stop but on a low heat for more flavour to diffuse.
13. When the rice is warm up a bit , put off heat and serve hot
Dr. Brown is the founder of Jotscroll, he is a Medical Doctor, Entrepreneur, and author. Dr. Razi Brown holds a medical degree from the University of San Diego. He has invested in many startups and is currently working on his fifth book to be published in the upcoming year.