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Adulterated rice?
November 18, 2012 1:09 PM   Subscribe

I have a bag of "black rice" and after six weeks or so the black color has flaked off the outside of the rice grains. I now have a bag of white rice with a layer of black flakes at the bottom of the bag. Is this normal? Like, maybe the black color is part of some outer layer that mills itself off as the grains jostle around in the bag? Or was my rice coated in something to produce a fake black color?
posted by d. z. wang to Food & Drink (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Have you soaked a portion of the rice to see if the water turns black? If so, then it's definitely fake black rice.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 1:13 PM on November 18, 2012


Could be that it's just the bran that's black, and now the bran is falling off.
posted by Strass at 1:21 PM on November 18, 2012


The black rice I have is definitely paler on the inside than on the surface, but it doesn't rub off that easily. (And the inside of the grain is still a kind of gray-violet.) OTOH, I think there are several varieties of black rice.
posted by hattifattener at 1:45 PM on November 18, 2012


Have you soaked a portion of the rice to see if the water turns black? If so, then it's definitely fake black rice.

Wait, every time I have ever soaked black rice the water turns purplish-black, like this. I thought this was normal--I haven't been eating ersatz black rice, right?
posted by pullayup at 1:46 PM on November 18, 2012 [2 favorites]


If you post close up pictures of exactly what you mean maybe we could better diagnose you issue?
posted by Blasdelb at 1:46 PM on November 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


Wait, every time I have ever soaked black rice the water turns purplish-black, like this. I thought this was normal--I haven't been eating ersatz black rice, right?

Purple or dark brown water is normal. If the water turns black like ink, that is not normal.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 1:56 PM on November 18, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think fake.

Chinese black rice is also called 'forbidden rice', supposedly because it was reserved for the Emperor and forbidden to commoners (according to Lotus Foods, from which I bought mine), and as such is a prestige food and a good candidate for counterfeiting.

It gave me a stomach ache, so I didn't eat much of it and finally threw it away a couple of weeks ago after a dozen years sitting on the shelf-- no flaking and no rancidity that I could smell, which amazed me in a whole grain rice.

The wash water from mine was a deep, inky purple-black, which I thought was standard-- and speaking of standard, my go-to rice reference, Seductions of Rice, says "Washing turns the water a deep purple-black" (P. 64).
posted by jamjam at 3:06 PM on November 18, 2012


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