Thursday, February 21, 2008

Brown rice in the NY Times

Mark Bittman, who writes a column for the NY Times called the Minimalist, wrote a piece on brown rice this week. The website includes a 5 minute video of his method for cooking brown rice more quickly (one of the most common complaints about brown rice is that it takes 45 minutes to cook). Essentially he partially cooks it ahead of time, then finishes it off while preparing the rest of the meal. It's not really faster--the cooking is just broken down into two steps. Still, it could be useful when you need to make dinner quickly. Personally, I think it is easier to just cook extra when you have time and then reheat it in the microwave. Other people have told me that brown rice cooks very quickly in a pressure cooker--only 10 minutes!

1 comment:

Marc said...

A little while ago I wrote something about energy and rice cooking over at The Ethicurean. The rice used in the study was white rice, not brown, but I imagine that some of the results carry over. Using a pressure cooker or presoaking the rice caused significant decreases in energy required to cook the rice and a slight reduction in the time needed. These both make sense: a pressure cooker increases the boiling point of water and rice cooking is more or less the process of rehydration.

A recent article by food science guru Harold McGee in the New York Times recommended presoaking other dry foods like pasta and lentils as a way to reduce energy consumption.