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Nov 3, 2011 03:07 PM

Brown Basmati Rice help

I'm subbing brown basmati for white, and I am wondering if I need to add more water than the recipe calls for. The recipe is for 2 cups of basmati and 3 cups of water. Anyone know?

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  1. I just made a batch in my rice cooker today. I use the same water proportions, but I do let it soak in the water for at least 30 minutes before cooking it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: TorontoJo

      This is a perfect recipe that I got a long time ago from a friend. It really is excellent.

      Give it a look-see here. :)

    2. I cook my brown basmati using the same ratio as I do for white rice but I make sure I rince the rice very, very thoroughly. The few times I've skipped this step has resulted in rice that tasted like cardboard.

      1. Yes you use a higher water to rice ratio with brown Basmati than you do with white Basmati.
        Use 2 parts water to 1 rice with brown and 1.5:1 for white.

        5 Replies
        1. re: chefj

          Yes, that's what I wound up doing, though I wasn't 100% happy with the resulting rice texture.

            1. re: chefj

              It I was, if not mushy, then sort of creamy. I don't know how else to describe it. I like the rice to be more separate.

              1. re: roxlet

                I think you can achieve this by sauteing the rice before adding the water instead of the opposite as the recipe suggests.

        2. You can use the same water-to-rice ratio for brown basmati rice vs white basmati rice, but many people prefer to add more water.

          6 Replies
          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

            In my experience this is not true.
            Not to mention that every source I can find calls for at least 2:1 if not more and many call for 30 min. soaking first.

            1. re: chefj

              :) Do you mean 2:1 ratio between brown rice to water? or do you mean 2:1 ratio between the water for brown rice vs the water for white rice?

              Anyway, I think everyone is different. As you can read above, several people think it is fine to use the same ratio as that of white rice, some believe more. I mentioned both.

                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                    For the Lundberg brown basmati it's rinse the rice, 2 cups water, one cup rice.

          2. 2:1 is way too much water to rice. For both brown and white basmati rice: after rinsing several times in cool water I cook the rice 2 cups rice to 2.75 cups of water (or chicken broth). I also put a folded paper towel under the lid of the pot while the rice simmers. In 20 - 25 minutes I have perfect rice. Been doing it this way for at least ten years.

            4 Replies
            1. re: al b. darned

              Now, that you mentioned it, I have one more thing to say.

              It actual depends how you cook your rice too. It you keep the water boils longer, then you need more water. If you use a rice cooker, then you will need less water.

              1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                (Sounds of screaming) So which is it??? Gawd, rice, so simple but such a pita.

                Soaking allows rice to absorb water, so possibly less it needed to cook with; rinsing and not draining well may skew the results, a rice cooker will take less liquid; some posters use just 1.25 cups of water to 1 cup rice, which I think is not near enough for any hull on (brown) rice, can you trust the directions on the bag, does it matter what method you use?

                I think the issue is how you like your rice cooked, bite wise, and whether you use white or brown, with a chewy bite, tender, or creamy, like roxlet's was. I think she meant, when she commented that her rice was more creamy; her Jasmati rice contained more starch and possibly more unabsorbed liquid, than what is common with properly cooked white basmati with resulting separate and dry grains.

                I give up. Please call me when you all figure it out. ;-)

                1. re: bushwickgirl

                  Bushwickgirl, you made me laugh!

                  FTR, I almost never rinse my rice beforehand, and I usually use a 2:1 ratio of water to rice unless the directions on the bag specifically tell me to do otherwise.

                  IDK, SHOULD I be rinsing the rice? I like how it comes out, both the flavor and texture. What is the rationale for rinsing?

                  I also never rinse quinoa and have never encountered the bitterness other people describe, but then again, 99% of the time, I am using quinoa along with rice in a pilaf, where I toast the grains beforehand, so maybe that has some effect on the saponins.

                  1. re: bushwickgirl

                    "Soaking allows rice to absorb water, so possibly less it needed to cook with"

                    I agree. It is always a pleasure to talk to you bushwick.

                    "rinsing and not draining well may skew the results"

                    This is the part I am not so sure. It is know that rinsing makes a different for white rice, but that is something we can see. We can see the starch being washed away. I don't see that for brown rice....

                    I think you are absolutely correct. It is the way how you like your rice cook. That is the same for white rice, so obviously it makes sense for brown rice as well. Still, I think there is some ballpark numbers. Obviously, 0.5 cup of water for 1 cup of rice is way too little, and 3 cups of water for 1 cup of rice is too much....etc.

                    One thing I know about soaking brown rice is not just for absorbing water, but for germination, for potential health reasons: