How to Cook Basmati Rice: 7 Easy Steps Under 30 Minutes
Do you want to know how to cook basmati rice, but no time? Here are 7 steps prepared in 30 minutes or less.
Basmati is a popular rice variety loved all over the world. In Sanskrit, its name means aromatic or fragrant, which perfectly suits this extremely aromatic, long-grained, and nutty-flavored rice. But then, you may be wondering how to cook basmati rice? Is it possible to prepare it in 30 minutes or less?
Aside from its delicious aroma and flavor, what makes Basmati rice special is how easy it is to prepare. It is also perfect with various recipes – jambalaya and paella, among them. You don’t have to be a kitchen wiz to prepare a delicious meal with this rice.
In fact, you can get it ready in 7 simple steps. More importantly, it won’t take too much of your time so you can easily get it ready even if you’re on the go.
What You Need
To cook the perfect basmati rice, you will need to prepare some ingredients and equipment. The amount of ingredients depends on your expected yield. This tutorial will make about 5 cups of rice. Here is a list of things you need to prepare.
- (500 ml) or 2 cups of basmati rice
Basmati is low in fat and is gluten-free so, it is generally healthy. It even contains eight essential amino and folic acids. It has no cholesterol and has very low sodium.
For people who are trying to lose weight or live a healthier lifestyle, basmati is ideal source of carbohydrates as it has low to medium glycemic index.
- (750 ml) or 3 cups of water
- Salt to taste
- Bowl to soak the rice in
- Measuring spoons and cups
- 2 quart sauce pot with lid
Five Tips to Make the Best Basmati Rice
Before proceeding to the step-by-step guide on how to cook basmati rice, there are a couple of tips that you may find useful in preparing the grain for cooking.
There are certain strategies that make the rice less sticky. These tips are based on years of experience from preparing the rice so you may want to try them out yourself.
1. Use the best quality rice
Pakistani or Indian basmati rice is both considered to be the best quality. However, some brands can be quite expensive although you can still find high quality and affordable ones in the market as well.
The good news is, although the grain’s quality is a big factor in deciding whether it tastes great or not, you will still be able to prepare delicious rice if you follow these tips.
2. Rinse the rice thoroughly
Rinsing the rice for a few minutes will help rid it off starch that makes it sticky. You do not have to leave it under perfectly clear, running water the same way you would rinse Japanese rice.
Leaving it to simply rinse will make the rice even more ready for cooking. If you are trying out a new brand, observe the length of time in rinsing the grain and how sticky the yield is.
Remember the stickier the yield, the longer you have to rinse the grain next time you cook it.
3. Add salt
Before you pour in water, add a little bit of salt in the pot. This makes it easier for the grains to absorb the salt, making the flavor a bit more subtle.
Do not wait for the rice to cook before you add in the salt since this makes the rice taste saltier than it should.
4. Pour boiling water
This step is not necessary and is purely a matter of preference. Perhaps you can try it yourself and see if you like the results better than skipping this step.
If you pour boiling water from the top of the rice, you can track the exact quantity that you need instead of leaving the water to boil in the pot and lose some of it due to evaporation.
This method helps you cook soft and tender basmati rice with just the right amount of moisture.
5. Use aluminium foil or tight lid
You want your rice to steam perfectly. The best way to achieve this is to either use a tight lid or, more preferably, aluminium foil since you can seal it better and steam doesn’t escape.
The idea is to steam the rice really well so that it yields perfect, long, separate, and fluffy grains of rice.
How to cook the rice:
The beauty about cooking rice is that it will only take about five minutes of active participation. While waiting for the rice to cook, you can do other activities to maximize your time.
Step 1 - Rinse the rise
Do this with cold, running water. Place the rice in the strainer and let the running water flow through it. Leave it for a couple of minutes.
Step 2 - Optional: soak the rice
This step is not a must, but it definitely helps make the rice softer. If you have time to wait, you can place the rice in the large bowl and leave it to soak for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Step 3 - Transfer rice to the sauce pot
You can directly place the rice in the sauce pot. However, if you have been soaking it, make sure you drain it well first before transferring it to the sauce pot. Add a pinch of salt to the rice.
Step 4 - Pour boiling water
Boil 3 cups of boiling water in a pot. Pour the boiling water over the rice.
Step 5 - Leave to simmer, then cover tightly with aluminium foil
In medium-high heat, wait for the water to boil and steam. Then, using aluminium foil, cover the pot tightly and make sure to seal the edges so that steam does not escape. Cover the pot with the lid.
Step 6 - Turn down heat
Reduce the heat to the lowest setting and leave the rice to keep cooking for another 15 minutes.
Step 7 - Remove from heat
Without removing the lid, leave the rice to steam for another 5 minutes. Using a fork, fluff the rice before you serve it.
Did you enjoy this tutorial? Perhaps trying out the process yourself will show you how useful the steps and tips are in preparing basmati rice. Remember that each brand may produce different results.
Therefore, experimenting on how long you rinse the grain and whether to add boiling water or not, will help you reach the right consistency in the long run.
Eventually, you can add recipes like pilau, paella, and jambalaya to name a few that is perfect with this kind of rice. Again, you don’t need to be a kitchen god or goddess. The key is to follow these steps and tweak it a bit depending on your experience with the brand of rice you are using.
If you have tried these steps, please leave a comment below. It would be very interesting to read how it turned out for you. Also, you can share this article so you can spread these tips and tricks to your friends.