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Nov 3, 2005 11:02 AM

Jasmine to cook? Need basic tips

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This may seem very elementary but I cannot find on a search. Please give me tips on how to cook white rice (not in a rice cooker) so it will come out nice and fluffy and not stuck to bottom of pan. I am making some tonight to go with recipe from Wednesday NY Times for chicken livers with pancetta and five spice powder. I know there have been some excellent threads on this in the past but I cannot find them.

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  1. First, wash your rice well, until the water runs clear. Then drain and place in a heavy bottomed sauce pan. For 1 C. rice you will need 1 3/4 C. water add a dash of salt. Bring the water to a boil and stir once with a fork. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pan. Let it cook for 25 miinutes and do not remove the lid or stir. At the end of 25 minutes, remove from the range and let it stand, still covered, don't peek, for 10 - 15 minutes. Then remove the lid and fluff with a fork and serve. No peeking or stirring while it cooks or steams afterwards.

    12 Replies
    1. re: MZG

      I am a hopeless failure at cooking rice, but fortunately my DH is a wiz. His tried and true method is to bring the rice/water to a boil, simmer until you don't see the water any more and small holes start appearing on top. He then reduces the heat to low, covers and cooks for about 15 minutes. This also works wonderfully for brown basmati rice - insteading of getting kernels that have fallen apart,they remain intact, but tender.

      1. re: MMRuth

        This method sounds interesting. What proportions of water/rice does he use? Does he leave it uncovered during the first simmering phase?

        1. re: doctor_mama

          Definitely uncovered during the simmering phase - I don't remember about the water - is the typical standard 1:1 or 1:2 - I think it is whatever that is, but he's travelling (selling rice in Cuba) or I'd check w/ him. It really does turn out perfectly - many a dinner party where I've made the rice and he's had to redo it! I should learn my lesson.

          1. re: MMRuth

            For figuring out proportion of rice to water I use the finger method.

            First, use the right sized pot. Whether you're cooking a lot or a little, the raw rice should be at least 1 inch deep, and between 1/4 and 1/3 the height of the pot.

            Wash the rice by swirling cold water around the rice in the pot and pouring off the top, picking out any stones.

            Give the pot a shake to settle the rice. Determine the correct water level by sticking your finger in the pot. The tip of your middle finger should touch the top of the wet rice. Add cold water until it reaches the 1st creaseline of your digit.

            As for the rest, I agree with the fast boil then simmer method. Do not peek.

            If you do not have enough stovetop space, you can also take the pot off the stove after the initial 5 min of simmering, cover the pot with a bunched up bathtowel, and it will cook by itself for the next 20 min.

            1. re: vicki_vale

              Thanks to everyone. Not to be too dense, but using that digit method you are adding what seems to be very little water, right? From the tip of your finger to the first digit above it, only an inch or so above the level of the rice; is that correct? Now, using the towel method, which I think I have heard of, would you put the towel under the lid of the pot or just use the towel to cover w/o the lid?

              1. re: erica

                Keep the lid on the pot, and wrap the bath towel around the whole thing to keep it hot.

                Someone else wrote about a similar technique for cooking turkey, dubbed the "sleeping bag" method.

            2. re: MMRuth

              if he's simmering the rice uncovered, then the ratio would be 1:2. You can get away with 1:1.5, but only if it is covered.

              1. re: MMRuth
                King of Northern Blvd.

                I buy a 20lb bag of Basmati rice from Costco and the little direction card that comes with says to do exactly that....It always turns out perfect... 1 rice to 1.5 water..

                1. re: MMRuth

                  Husband says he uses what ever amount it says on the bag, b/c different rices need different amounts of water.

            3. re: MZG

              Note, though, that jasmine rice isn't an inherently "light, fluffy" rice. Not as starchy as medium grain rices, it's also starchier than American long grain and much starchier than, say, basmati. If you expect those results, you'll probably be disappointed.

              1. re: MZG

                I was told that Jasmine rice is very healthy for you. Is this true? If so, I see what you wrote about making it and just wanted to know when making this, besides the salt and water, do you also add a little oil to it?

                1. re: YonkersGirl

                  Jasmine rice is not particularly more nutritious than any white rice, and white rice is not all that nutritious. Jasmine also has a high glycemic index number, higher than western white rice, twice as high as white basmati rice, and about as high as pure glucose.

                  Brown jasmine rice is more nutritious than white jasmine rice and has a lower GI#, but its GI# is still a lot higher than that of regular short or long grain brown rice, and way higher than brown basmati.

              2. Here's a great article by Kasma Loha-unchit on how to cook perfect jasmine rice. If you haven't explored her Thai cooking site, you really should. It's a treasure trove.


                2 Replies
                1. re: J.A.

                  Lovely, thanks so much!

                  1. re: J.A.

                    Thanks so much for this tip about Thai Food & Travel. I've come across that site in searches but always skipped it because I thought it was just a regular tourism site with a few recipes tossed in.

                  2. So simple. been cooking it daily for 20 years, never a problem in any sense. Put 2 measures dry rice in pot, add almost 3 measures of water, 3 full measures if you like it more moist. Cover pot, bring to a boil without overflowing and turn fire down to lowest simmer for 20 min....22 min. maximum. No health problems

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: wkstat

                      My ratio with most types of rice is 1:1.5 rice to water. So we are on the same page here. I cook uncovered until the water is near the level of the rice, then stir and cover and simmer for 15 min. Remove from heat and let rest a little