How to Cook Rice
Rice is one of the easiest dishes to make around the world. It is a meal preferred amongst nations and can be prepared in a number of ways. Rice is said to be rich in calories. The food can be eaten just as it is if properly cooked with sufficient water or by choice with varieties of seasonings and sauces.
What is Rice?
Rice is a cereal grain and can either be processed and made into packaged food or cooked into a meal. Rice is one of the most consumed meals around the Asian and African continents. It is the meal that contains up to about one-fifth of calories.
There are different species of rice that are grown all around the world. They come in different shapes, sizes and even colours. Just like every other crop, some of these grains are particularly grown in certain areas or locations of the world. It is also known to be a monocot and is grown once in a year.
In tropical areas, rice crops can be grown and produced as perennial crops. Though it has a rapid growth in tropical areas, rice can be grown even on mountainous and hilly environments, especially when there is the use of controlling water terrace systems.
How to cook Rice?
Since there are varieties of species of the crop, there are obviously various ways to cook rice, especially because it is grown and eaten in different areas of the world. Different cultures can determine the way a certain meal is prepared. Rice can either be boiled or steamed. It is known to absorb water.
When cooking the meal, it is advisable to use an amount of water that is a little more than the quantity of rice being cooked. If the quantity of water to be cooked has to be more, the excess can be sieved after the grain meal is soft enough according to preference. When the water is sieved before being served, one has to realize that enriching additives in the grains will be lost alongside.
Cooking the grain meal is a lot easier when one uses an Electric cooker. Though rice on its own is not a hard grain meal to cook but utilizing an electric rice cooker which is common in most parts of Asia and some parts in Africa definitely makes for quick and easy preparation of the meal. Frying the grain meal in oil before boiling makes the rice grains only a little less sticky.
In parts of Arab, rice is cooked into a porridge with a little more than enough water so that it disintegrates and is served as a meal for the sick. In Africa and specifically Nigeria alone, there are up to five and even more ways to prepare rice.
One of the most common ways is to boil rice and add only a pinch of salt after washing it till it is soft to taste. When this is well cooked, it can be eaten with absolutely anything according to choice, stew, sauce, soup, etc. Another most common rice eaten in Nigeria is the famous “Nigerian Jollof”.
The Nigerian jollof is popularly known as “Naija Jollof” is one that is usually made and eaten only in special Nigerian occasions. Just like the regular rice, the desired quantity is boiled or parboiled to a certain extent for about 10 to 15 minutes, after that, the rice is washed with cold water and left to be drained.
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The desired quantity of tomatoes, be it fresh/ vegetable tomatoes or tomato paste are then poured into an amount of heated vegetable oil over reduced heat and fried alongside some pieces of onions. The tomatoe and onions are fried and stirred for up to 10 minutes. Preferred spices are then added.
Based on choice or preference, prawns, beef or fish can be used. After the spices are added, one can now add water to the pan or pot, an amount that is equal to the quantity of rice. The rice is then cooked till it is soft enough and the water all absorbed. Then the Rice is ready to be served.
Preparing fried rice also takes the same steps. One has to prepare all the necessary and required ingredients,(some of these ingredients include; carrots, green peas, green pepper, spring onions, among others), wash and dice or chop them, fry them with vegetable oil into a sauce and mix them in a pot till the ingredients are fully mixed with the rice.
After this, the rice is then cooked to preferred taste and can be served with chilled preferred drinks.
In conclusion, rice, as seen, is an easy to prepare meal and is served all over the world. It is considered to be a staple meal and is rich in calories.