10 Secrets to Making Perfect Rice (Slideshow)
Use a Rice Cooker
Using a rice cooker is a simple and easy way to make rice well every time. In most instances, water and rice can be added to the rice cooker and turned on, then you can go about with making other things in the kitchen. An affordable and effective rice cooker model can be purchased for under $50.
Add Fish Sauce
On its own fish sauce is a strong and fragrant ingredient, but mixed into your rice it can embolden its flavor in a more delicate way. Next time you cook rice, mix in three or four dashes of fish sauce once the rice has finished cooking.
Check on Your Rice's Shelf Life
While rice does have a long shelf life, it is a good idea not let your rice sit in the cabinet for too long. According to the USDA Department of Agriculture, the the typical shelf life for un-refrigerated rice is about six months. The fresher your rice, the better it will taste when you've cooked it.
Avoid Stirring Your Rice
Avoid stirring rice while it is cooking. According to the USA Rice Federation, "Stirring releases the starch, resulting in rice that is sticky."
Remove Rice From the Pan or Cooker When Done
Unless your recipe calls for slightly burning or crisping rice, be sure to not overcook your rice by removing it from the pot or rice cooker immediately after it has finished cooking.
Try a Different Variety of Rice
The Whole Grain Council lists at least 12 major varieties of rice, each with different flavor profiles and nutrients. Next time you're in the supermarket, try a different variety of rice. You may be surprised by how it tastes.
Check Up on Your Rice
Check up regularly on your rice to avoid overcooking. According to Academia Barilla your rice is ready to eat when it is al dente, or firm but not hard.
Toast the Grains
Give your rice a different flavor by toasting the grains in a sauté pan before cooking them.
Use Chicken or Vegetable Broth
Make your rice more savory by swapping out boiling water with chicken or vegetable broth.
Try a Different Seasoning
Use rice's versatility as an ingredient to your advantage. Bring out a unique flavor by trying a different seasoning next time you cook rice. Better yet, make your own.