Basmati rice is characterized by its slightly nutty flavor and somewhat floral aroma. The grain is longer than typical rice, which is how basmati is recognized. Basmati makes the perfect accompaniment to curries, meats, and sauces. Read on to learn more about basmati and the delicious recipes it is used in.
What is Basmati Rice?
Basmati rice is found in two varieties; white and brown. Brown basmati has a nutty flavor with an herbal aroma, whereas white basmati has a more neutral taste. Brown basmati and white basmati are essentially the same grain, but are processed differently.
White basmati rice is produced by removing the bran from grains of brown basmati. The bran is the outer covering, also called the husk, on each rice grain. In this process, the germ is also removed. The germ is essentially the seed, which allows the plant to grow. In the end, what is left is the white starchy part or white Basmati rice.
Basmati rice is long and slender. In India, a rice variety qualifies as basmati if it is at least 6.61 mm long and 2 mm wide before cooking. When shopping for basmati, make sure to look for certified products to ensure you are buying the real deal.
Basmati is grown in areas with fertile soil that are completely flooded with water. More often than not, these areas have to be artificially irrigated due to the high amount of water necessary for this thirsty crop.
Where is Basmati Grown?
Basmati rice is commonly grown in the Himalayas, particularly in Pakistan and India. Two-thirds of the world’s basmati rice is produced in India, with the other third being filled by Pakistan. Basmati rice is exported to all parts of the world where it is enjoyed in a variety of cuisines.
Cooking with Basmati
Basmati rice has to be soaked in water for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours before it is cooked. This soaking period allows the rice to absorb water and to grow larger during the cooking process. Soaked basmati rice typically cooks in under 15 minutes and is known for the soft appearance once cooked.
Basmati Rice is used in a number of cuisines:
1) Basmati rice is best known for its use in pilaf. Pilaf, also called Pilao, is a popular Middle Eastern cuisine made by cooking a chicken or beef broth and then mixing basmati rice into it. Finish off your pilaf with condiments such as yogurt.
2) Basmati rice can be cooked and consumed with many different types of curries. We love basmati as a blank canvas to soak up all the flavors of Aloo Matar, Saag Paneer, and Red Lentil Daal.
Feature Image: PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay
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How do I cook Basmati rice in the Suvie starch cooker?
Hi Cherry, here this guide for cooking rice in the Starch Cooker. Select “Long Grain Rice” for basmati.