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How to cook… Basmati Steamed Rice

Serves 4 as a side dish

The staple addition to most curries, rice comes in various guises but plain white Basmati Steamed Rice is the go-to option for many people. The simplicity of plain rice works well with many dishes, allowing you to taste the flavours of your main dish rather than having the rice competing for attention. There are lots methods out there for rice: this one cooks it until it’s just cooked then lets it steam dry so the rice separates. Simple.

What you need
• 300g Basmati rice (the best quality you can get)
• water


How you make it
1. Wash the rice to remove the starch. Keep rinsing it until the water is no longer milky. This may take 8 or more rinses.
2. In a saucepan add enough water so that the rice is covered by 3cm and bring it to a boil with the lid on.
3. Stir and reduce the heat so the water is at a fast simmer. Gently stir every so often.
4. You need to remove the rice and drain it as soon as the rice grains have cooked. If you remove them too soon they’ll be brittle and if you leave them too long they’ll be mush. This takes from 7–12 minutes, depending how quick you are simmering the water, so at the 7-minute mark remove a grain and bite into it. If it’s brittle let it continue to simmer. Check a grain every 30 seconds until the rice is soft to your bite.
5. As soon as the grain you test is soft then drain all the rice in a colander. Sift it around to make sure all the water is removed. Now put the colander to one side and allow it to steam. After 5 minutes the grains will have separated and are ready to serve. If you are serving after this you can transfer the rice to a serving tray and put it the oven on a very low heat to keep it warm.

CHEF’S TIP
A lot of people leave the rice to do it’s own thing while they concentrate on the main dish, which is why so many people say they always overcook rice. But it’s important to pay attention to the rice for a few minutes as removing the rice at the right time is crucial.

If you like this you should try our
Roasted Sweet Potatoes (Bhundi Shakarkandi)Medium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken Bhoona

You’ve got your curry, you’ve got your nan, but sometihing is missing. What do you sing? … Rice, Rice, Baby.