Rice is a staple food in Asia; hence, it is one of the principle food crops grown there. It is classified as long-grain, short-grain, and glutinous. Long-grain, as the name suggests, is long, slender, and less starchy when compared to the other varieties of rice. Also, it remains fluffy and separate after cooking. It is one of the most favored rice by many around the globe. It is the type of rice that blends well with any gravy or a side dish. Long-grain rice can also be used as a bed for herbal sauces mixed with vegetables, chicken, or meat and can be served as a side dish as well. All these qualities make it one of the best varieties of rice.
Types of Long-grain Rice
- American Rice: This variety has a bland taste and also includes Caroline rice.
- Patna Rice: This type is grown in India and is considered as a mild rice.
- Basmati Rice: Basmati has a nutty taste, strong aroma, and is widely used to make Arabian and Indian dishes.
- Jasmine Rice: This variety is less expensive when compared to Basmati and is had as an accompaniment with Thai and Vietnamese dishes.
- Popcorn Rice: This is a hybrid of Basmati and American rice. It is considered as mild rice, and it is cheaper as compared to Basmati.
Cooking Long-grain Rice Using Absorption Method
In absorption method, the quantity of water used to cook rice is measured. By the time the rice gets cooked, the entire water is absorbed. For every one cup of rice, use 1.5 to 2 cups of water. Rinsing the rice in a few changes of cold water, before starting to cook helps remove loose starch and make it less sticky. You can choose to presoak or continue without soaking. Either way, ensure to drain your rice thoroughly to avoid using excess water in cooking. You can also opt to add a pinch of salt and little bit of oil to the water, to give the rice a nicer look and taste.
Using a Pressure Cooker
If you're cooking the rice in a pressure cooker, then wait till you hear the first two whistles. Follow this by reducing the flame and turning off the gas knob once you hear the third whistle. After this, wait for the pressure to be released before opening the cooker lid.
Using a Pot
When using a pot, keep it uncovered over high flame and bring the water to a boil. After the water comes to a boil, reduce the heat low enough to a simmer for maybe ten minutes. You can still choose to keep a good eye on the rice intermittently. Turn off the flame immediately, once you see tiny steam holes on the surface, which appear when a lot of water has been absorbed. Leave the pot on the burner, completely covered for maybe ten more minutes, which will enable the rice to absorb the remainder of the water in this time. Fluff the rice up with a fork, right before serving.
Apart from using the above two methods, you can even choose to cook long-grain rice in a microwave oven or an electric rice cooker. Always remember, that if you add more water to the rice while cooking, it becomes soft and sticky. Adding the right quantity of water is the key to getting fluffy and non-sticky rice cooked to perfection.