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The perfect microwave brown rice

rworange | Sep 20, 200711:23 AM     27

It took me a few pounds of rice, but I have it down

1. Wash rice three times or until water runs clear to remove starch which makes rice boil over

2. Put rice in a large bowl and add 4 parts water to 1 part rice.
(1 cup rice / 4 cups water 1/2 cup rice / 2 cups water, 1/3 cup rice / 1 1/3 cups water, etc)

3. Cover and microwave until water boils (8 - 10 minutes depending on microwave)

4. CAREFULLY remove cover (there's a lot of hot steam in there)

5. Microwave uncovered 20 minutes or until most of water is absorbed

6. Remove from microwave, cover and let sit until remaining water, if any, is absorbed

Over the past few weeks I tried almost every method I found on the web with mainly disasterous results.

First ... yes it doesn't save time from the stove top method. However, there is a greater degree of control. If I forget about the rice, I'm not going to burn it. At worst, overcooking rice in the microwave results in rice concrete ... a solid block that throwing water on and microwaving again resolves.

I don't want a rice cooker because I don't want another appliance. I don't cook rice that often.

The most common method is 5 minutes on high followed by various suggested times on medium ... yeah ... I don't want to have to remember how to cook on medium on my microwave. I'd have to find the manual, if I still have it ... too fussy.

Most recipes use too little water or don't cook long enough.

Major kudos ... MAJOR ... to the forgotten Chowhound who clued me in to the tip about removing the starch by washing to prevent overboiling ... really ... major thanks. Until then my microwave rice strategy was to cover and cook until water was absorbed and that always resulted in boil overs and having to clean the turntable.

One recipe suggested adding a teaspoon of vinegar to make the rice fluffier. Didn't make a difference on back-to-back tests. Skip the vinegar.

Another suggested stirring the rice every once in a while. There was no added value to that.

Nope. This is easiest and works every time. Don't have to watch it. Don't have to think.

Lots of recipes suggest adding oil/butter and salt. I don't need extra fat in my diet so I didn't do that. If I want buttered rice, I can just add it when the rice is done.

One site suggested putting rice in dish, putting your finger on the top of the rice and adding water to the level of the first joint in your index finger ... that actually kind of works, but I like a little more preciison.

I tried just cooking rice uncovered on high for about half an hour, but for some reason, rice needs to boil at some point in the process ... it needs that heat buildup.

The first time, in order to calculate the time for your microwave, you'll have to watch it. But to sum up
- Cover and microwave until rice boils
- Cook uncovered until liquid is absorbed (you could use chicken or veggie stock)
- Remove from microwave and let sit covered if there is remaining liquid

It's better almost to leave a little bit of water since sitting on the counter absorbs it and, to me, the rice is a bit fluffier.

I microwave 1/2 cup of uncooked rice.

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