Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Wash Your Rice, Or Else

You will hear/read varying opinions on whether or not to wash your precious rice. Cooking dinner last night gave me a solid reason for yes, yes you really should. However, this was a special exception. The hubby and I don't cook sticky rice very often, so it stays in its dark space under the cupboard for long periods of time. A quick horray for the long shelf life of rice.

What I discovered, and lots of, were tiny little bugs which I will deem Rugies for rice bugs. Makes it less creepy right? ..Fine. Anyway, the husband told me it is quite normal for this bug surprise. In Thailand, because of the heat, these Rugies pop up quicker and can be a bit larger than the ones I discovered.

The rice is still edible folks, you just have to rinse the rice many times. You'll be cooking the rice at high temperatures if that calms your senses. Rinsing is easy, I just filled the bowl, making sure to agitate the rice using a spoon which allows the Rugies to float on top of the water. Carefully drain the water and repeat this process till the Rugies are gone. 

Rugies or no, I always rinse the rice because in my opinion it helps the rice taste that much better and making the texture just right. If it washes away any added vitamins, the loss is minimal.

We made our sticky rice in a very non-traditional way. If you want to go for (Thai) authentic, this is what you would use:

Since we don't have these pieces, though easy to be found at larger Asian markets, we went for easy. For measuring purposes, we almost always scoop 3 times with a handy 3/4 cup--um, cup. What's that equal, roughly 2 1/4 cup? Sounds good. 

1. Rinse rice till water is fairly clear, or in our case all Rugies are gone.
2. Fill water above the rice, about one knuckle (your pinky) depth.
3. Let soak for about 40-60 minutes, your preference.
 4. Cover bowl with saran wrap, leaving a small peak-a-boo space for air flow.

5. Poor out excess water, leaving just a small amount to cover rice.
6. Microwave on high for 4 minutes. Stir. Heat on high for another 4 minutes. This may vary depending on how much rice you cook and the wattage of your microwave.
7. Enjoy. 

We made sticky rice to go along with Mu Nam Tok, หมูน้ำตก, a Thai pork dish. The sauce to go with it is supposed to be spicy, but the chilli powder we had was a dud, lame. Ah well, it was still delicious. Here are some visuals of our goods:

Spinach on the side was our doing, helps balance out the dish for us. Eat your veggies kids.

We had to fry the pork on the stove because for whatever reason our apartment head honcho's won't allow anyone to grill anymore. Thus, due to the strong smell of the pork and ingredients for the sauce, cracking a window while cooking is advisable. 
Side note, the hubby says I am for sure an honorary Thai now because he accidentally squeezed lime juice in my eye. It BURNS. Splashing water in my retina's never felt so good. It's okay sweetie, I forgive you.

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