A perfectly cooked Basmati rice is all you need to make everyone hungry. As the rice cooks, the aroma of Basmati rice reaches beyond the kitchen, to every room, inviting all to the dining table! 🙂 Here are my two tricks on how to cook the perfect Basmati Rice that looks and tastes delicious!
At the end of almost every Indian main dish recipe, you will come across the sentence – “serve it hot with roti or rice.” Very often, this rice is white long grain basmati rice. This is the foolproof recipe to cook Basmati rice not sticky and fluffy, each time. It is simple and quick.
In India, plain Basmati rice is the most common accompaniment and also used to cook more rice recipes. The beauty of basmati rice lies in its fragrance and look — each grain cooked to its full length and separate from other. In Hindi we say “khila hua chawal” which would translate to “blossomed rice”.
While for our regular everyday cooking we have moved to the healthier brown and red rice; an Indian kitchen cannot keep Basmati rice away. Now, I mostly cook white Basmati rice only while hosting at home or in specific dishes like pilaf, biryani and sometimes for sweet dishes like kheer.
How to cook Basmati rice not sticky?
Every time, I have a party at home, this is the question that comes up! Rice being the staple food for more than half the world’s population, there are many ways of cooking rice; but this recipe is the no-fail recipe to get perfectly cooked Basmati rice. There are two tricks:
- The first thing to remember is the Basmati rice to water ratio. It is always 1:2. 1 cup Basmati rice will cook perfectly well in 2 cups of water.
- The second trick is to get as much starch out as possible. Prepare the Basmati rice by washing it multiple times before cooking. Rice has a lot of starch that makes the grains stick to each other, by washing the rice in multiple changes of water helps remove this starch. You will see the water will at first be very cloudy and then become clear in subsequent washes. Removal of starch leads to fluffy rice and also makes it easier to digest.
Follow the steps below and every time that you make Basmati rice, it will bring a smile. Especially when I am hosting a lunch or dinner at home, I cook rice as the last item when the guests are already in. It takes only about 15-20 minutes and fills the home with its beautiful aroma which kind of builds up everyone’s appetite :-). Normally, I cook rice in my cook and serve pot, so the pot directly goes from the cooktop to dining table. As soon as you open the lid, the steam escapes bringing the aroma to everyone. And even though plain rice is only an accompaniment, at that moment, this aromatic Basmati rice takes the center stage when everyone exclaims “Wow!”
How much Basmati rice should I cook per person?
When served as an accompaniment or side with a curry, about ¼th cup (50g) of uncooked Basmati rice (1 cup basmati rice = 200g) is a good quantity per person. When cooking for 3 or more people, I always add “1 portion for the table”, that is, I will cook an extra ¼th cup. I don’t want to fall short on rice and cooked Basmati rice stays well in the fridge for the next couple of days so if there are any leftovers, I can use it the next day.
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The perfect Indian Basmati rice recipe
Ingredients (1cup = 240ml; 1tbsp = 15ml; 1tsp = 5ml)
- 1 cup Basmati rice (~200g)
- 2 cups water
- 1 tsp ghee
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 cloves optional
- Take the rice in a big bowl and fill it with regular water. As you swirl your hand through the rice and water, the water will go cloudy with all the rice starch.
- Drain the water through a sieve and repeat washing the rice until the water runs clear. This usually takes 3-4 changes of water.
- Fill up the bowl with water and let the rice sit for 10 mins.
- In a pot, bring 2 cups of water to boil. Reduce the heat to low. Drain the rice and add to the water. Add ghee, salt, and cloves. Give everything a mix. Close and cook on the lowest heat for 15-20 minutes till all the water has been absorbed by the rice and the rice is cooked through.
- Remove from heat and let the rice stand covered for 5 mins.
- Open and take in the beautiful aroma.
- it is better to soak the brown rice for at least 45 mins,
- use 2½ times water, and
- also it requires longer to cook, about 30 mins.
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