Rice: how to creatively cook with it
February 7, 2010 5:36 AM   Subscribe

Tell me your recipes that include rice.

We're frugal and will purchase anything we eat regularly in bulk; we've got 22 kilos of rice that we purchased before the price surge, and the "best before date" is rapidly approaching.

Looking for any and all recipes that will use rice, whether for a main course, side dish or desert. I have seen the relevant previous query, but that approached the subject from the point of view "what can I put on top of rice?"; I'm more interested in rice as an integral part of the recipe e.g., stuffed cabbage rolls, stuffed peppers, coconut rice desert, etc.
posted by Mutant to Food & Drink (33 answers total) 78 users marked this as a favorite
It would help if we knew what kind of rice it is. For instance, Basmati rice would make a terrible risotto (and risotto rice would be bad in a pilaf); similarly Asian glutinous rices have uses I would never dram of putting a starchier American long grain rice to.
posted by rhymer at 5:45 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Do you have short grain or long grain rice? It really makes a difference in how it cooks up.

One good one is 'Omuraisu' which is a great Japanese fried rice recipe that's very easy, cheap and tasty.

...actually fried rice is a great way to deal with any leftover rice. Fresh rice doesn't work as well as rice that's been left in the fridge overnight and reheated.

One thing that would work particularly well if you have short grained rice are 'onigiri' or rice balls. It's pretty much as advertised, a ball of rice with filling in the middle wrapped in seaweed. I make them a lot without the seaweed and with a tuna fish filling. Just think of the rice as the bread of a sandwich.

To make them wet your hands and put a little salt on them. Scoop up a bit of rice and mold it into a ball or triangle with your hand. Make a little pocket and put your filling of choice inside. Cover the pocket with a little more rice and mold it back into shape. Eat!
posted by Caravantea at 6:00 AM on February 7, 2010

What kind of rice?
posted by Jaltcoh at 6:11 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: Personally, I wouldn't get too hung up on the "best by" date for a product like rice, so long as it is properly stored. If it's in a cool, dry place and you're not getting insects, it's not going to go bad and become a health hazard any time soon.

That said, I'll add the suggestion of eating it for breakfast with milk and whatever accoutrements you normally enjoy on oatmeal. Similarly, I often make stove-top rice pudding with leftover rice the next morning (milk, one egg, raisins, some sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg--cook over low heat stirring frequently until it thickens up) and eat it for breakfast. These ideas open up a whole 'nuther mealtime to rice-consuming opportunities.
posted by drlith at 6:12 AM on February 7, 2010

Response by poster: Sorry, generic long grain rice. I don't really pay attention to "best before" either, but we're reorganising one of our pantries and have some bags (properly stored) that are about three years old ... so gotta get eating.
posted by Mutant at 6:20 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: You can make Porcupines, which have the added advantage that you can make these in bulk and freeze them for later meals.
posted by headspace at 6:26 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: Mexican Arroz Rojo — Red Tomato Rice

12 ounces very ripe tomatoes cored and roughly chopped
½ small white onion, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
1¾ cups chicken broth or water
Salt to taste
1½ tablespoons vegetable oil
1½ cups white rice, preferably medium-grain
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped in ¼ inch cubes
Fresh hot chiles (roughly 3 serranos or 2 jalapenos) slit each one lengthwise
¼ cup coarsely chopped parsley
1½ cups defrosted frozen peas or cooked fresh peas

1. The tomato flavoring and broth. In a blender or food processor, combine the tomatoes with the onion and garlic. Blend to a smooth puree. In a small saucepan or microwave oven, heat the broth or water until steaming; stir in about ¾ teaspoon salt. Cover and keep warm.

2. Frying the raw rice. In a medium saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, heat the oil over medium. When hot, add the raw rice and stir regularly until the grains have turned from translucent to milky white, usually 5-6 minutes. It is fine if some of the grains begin to brown. Add the tomato mixture and carrots and stir around a couple times, then let cook until any liquid is reduced and the mixture is somewhat dry looking; usually just 2-3 minutes.

3. Simmering the rice. Add the warm broth or water, chiles and parsley, stir thoroughly and scrape down any rice grains clinging to the side of the pan. Cover and cook over the lowest heat for 15 minutes—the temperature should be low enough that only the slightest hint of steam escapes.

Remove the pan from the heat, uncover it and quickly distribute the peas over the rice. Re-cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Uncover and test a grain of rice: if it's still a little hard, re-cover the pan and set over low heat for about 5 minutes; if the rice has absorbed all the liquid, sprinkle on 2 tablespoons of water before returning to the heat.

As soon as it is done, gently fluff the rice to release the steam and stop the cooking, then turn it into a warm bowl—and it's ready to serve. Do what you wish with the chiles, discard them, use them for decoration, or enjoy the yummy goodness.

Makes about six servings. Excellent as a side-dish with most any Mexican entree, or used as a stuffing for peppers, pasta, or tortillas. Enjoy.

Inspired by Rick Bayless' Mexico One Plate at a Time
posted by netbros at 6:26 AM on February 7, 2010 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Lentils and Rice with Fried Onions (Mujadarrah)
From Deborah Madison's "Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone"

Serves 4

6 tablespoons olive oil
1 very large onion, sliced into rounds 1/4 inch thick
1 1/4 cups green or brown lentils, rinsed.
3/4 cup white or brown long grain rice
Salt and freshly milled pepper

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently until it's a rich, dark brown, about 12 minutes. Meanwhile, put the lentils in a saucepan with 1 quart water and 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Add the rice, plenty of pepper, and, if needed, additional water to cover. Cover and cook over low heat until the rice is done, about 15 minutes. Stir in half the onions, then cover, and let stand off the heat for 5 minutes. Spoon the lentil-rice mixture onto plates or a platter and cover with the remaining onions.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 6:42 AM on February 7, 2010 [4 favorites]

Best answer: Try the many different recipes for Turkish pilav (where we get the English word pilaf, as in rice pilaf), or for dolmas (stuffed grape leaves).
posted by ocherdraco at 6:46 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: some of my off-the-beaten-path favorites

Braised Rice Soubise (Suzanne Goin)
Basil Fried Rice (Christina Arokiasamy)
Com Chien here
Congee here
posted by mr. remy at 7:02 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: One of my favorite cookbooks is the Seductions of Rice by Alford and Duguid - it's entirely focused on rice-based cuisines with lots of great recipes. One of my most used cookbooks!
posted by leslies at 7:03 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I just discovered this one thanks to my recent AskMe:

~1.5lbs black beans, sorted, rinsed etc. Cooked in a crock pot for about 6hrs on high
Once the beans are tender, drain off some of the bean juice and add one can of rotell, some salt and pepper and some garlic, simmer for about 30 mins in your crockpot so all the flavors mix together and then serve over rice.

You can also scoop some out with a slotted spoon, mash into a bean dip consistency and eat with chips, its good times!

Also, in my family most things are eaten over rice, pretty much all stews, roast, chicken and dumplings, anything soupish thing really, it makes it last longer. Enjoy!
posted by julie_of_the_jungle at 7:05 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: You'll only be able to eat so much rice.

I recommend drinking it too.
posted by vacapinta at 7:07 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: This rice pudding is absolutely amazing and never fails to impress.
posted by Meagan at 7:10 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: Breakfast Rice Pancakes.

These are a standard in our house, but pay attention to the comment about adding a bit of buttermilk. As written, the batter is too thick.
posted by jon1270 at 7:29 AM on February 7, 2010 [2 favorites]

Best answer: This is so bad for you it is scary, but god is it delicious.

Lowcountry Red Rice
rice - a coffee cup full
bacon grease
tomato paste - the small can
onions, minced (optional, just put them in if you want to pretend there's something mildly vegetable like in here. Vidalias are best.)

Cook up about a half pound - or more! Hey! Go nuts! - of bacon. Crumble the bacon. Drain off half the resultant fat. Saute the onions in the grease; when they are transparent add the rice. Saute until all the rice is well coated with grease. Put all into an casserole dish. Add one can of tomato paste, one heaping tablespoon of white sugar, one tomato paste can's worth of water (you may need a little more. My ex MIL, whose recipe this is, says one can is enough. I think perhaps one can and a half or a little more.) and the bacon. Stir all together, cook in the oven for approximately an hour. For full experience, serve with pork chops, applesauce and greens. Die happy.
posted by mygothlaundry at 7:48 AM on February 7, 2010 [6 favorites]

Best answer: I like chicken basque - I normally don't bother with the white wine or the tomato paste, but otherwise I stick to the recipe. Plus it only use pot, if you want to save on washing up.
posted by penguinliz at 8:34 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: Since the Saints are in the Super Bowl tonight (and they're going to win, god damn it), it's only proper to pass along the recipe for the definitive New Orleans dish of red beans and rice.
posted by letourneau at 8:45 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: Here's a simple, hearty, comforting dish I make from time to time. I bet it would be real nice as a breakfast for when you don't feel like breakfast food. I make it with basmati, but it would probably still be ok with other types of rice.

Cook rice and lentils together; proportions up to you, adjust amount of water accordingly. Chop up an onion or two (or three) and have them steam in there too. After that's sufficiently cooked, add in some butter and a little bit of olive oil (the latter not being necessary, but I think the two fats taste nice together-- just don't go overboard). Add chickpeas. Add a generous seasoning of garam masala and, optionally, other complementary flavors (I have some sort of generic "tandoori mix" that tastes good mixed in-- but the garam masala should be the dominant spice). Let that all cook in the pot a bit. Eat!

Very simple, and even more filling than it looks. It's not exactly a taste sensation or anything, but it's very satisfying, calling to mind other similar concepts like cinnamony oatmeal. I find it's a good way to make rice a bit more healthy, if you're at all concerned about fast carbs, by cutting it with some tasty, filling legumes and pulses.
posted by threeants at 8:46 AM on February 7, 2010

I did just realize the stupidity of offering a recipe partially designed to moderate rice consumption when you're explicitly trying to get through a stock of rice...sorry! Nonetheless, it's a yummy dish.
posted by threeants at 8:49 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: This is dead simple:
Put equal thirds brown rice, wild rice, and sunflower seeds in a heavy pot or rice cooker.
Add water in a 2:1 ratio of water:grains (be prepared to add more if necessary.)
Simmer until the rice is cooked (about 45-60 minutes.)

You can add salt, butter, olive oil, onions, diced bell peppers, diced carrots, soya sauce, white wine or anything else to taste.
But that's all there is to it. It's a great recipe for evenings when you just want to prepare something simple while you get other stuff done.
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 8:53 AM on February 7, 2010 [4 favorites]

Best answer: I've found Mark Bittman's very simple chicken and rice recipe a great starting point for tasty yet super-easy dinners. I usually add stock, saffron, and loads of veg: peppers, carrots, cellery, leeks, broccoli, courgettes, peas, etc. I also roast the chicken thighs in the oven and add them at the last minute. But the beauty of the recipe is that even if you strip it down to its essentials—chicken, rice, onions, stock—it's still delicious.

I also think his recipe for leek fried rice topped with egg and crispy ginger sounds pretty damn good.
posted by hot soup girl at 9:18 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: This is delicious: Southern Thai rice salad.
posted by Bookhouse at 9:32 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: Mujadarrah's been done, and is tremendous at using up lots of rice, but how about Nasi Goreng?

If you've got freezer space, cook the stuff, separate it into 1-2 serving batches, stick it in freezer bags pressed flat, and stack them up. Especially good for fried rice.
posted by holgate at 9:50 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Lemon rice is a favourite dish in South India.
posted by dhruva at 9:51 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: If you want to get adventurous, you could try some stuffed grape leaves (another recipe for this and one with meat ) . My last bf made these for me (he's from Turkey) and they are heavenly! We bought canned leaves and they work just fine.
posted by patheral at 10:15 AM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: You're missing soups so far, other than congee. Lemme recommend avgolemono, which is a Greek chicken-lemon-rice soup thickened with egg yolks. There are loads of versions of the recipe out there, and I don't have any particular loyalty to one, but they're all very simple — really it's a technique more than a recipe.

You cook a handful or two of rice in a pot of chicken broth. Depending on your taste, you can do this just until the rice is done, or you can keep cooking it until it starts to fall apart — in which case you basically get lemony Greek-American congee. This is how I like it, but I gather it's "not authentic"; it's how a lot of the Greek restaurants where I grew up made theirs.

Anyway, meanwhile, in a big bowl, you beat together an egg yolk and the juice of one lemon for every cup or two of broth in the pot. And then you ladle the hot broth and rice into the egg-and-lemon mixture a bit at a time, whisking as you go, and return it to low heat for a minute or two so that the egg thickens but doesn't break.

It's cheap and crazy rich and comforting as fuck, and as long as you're gentle with the heat at the end it's not hard at all — way easier than hollandaise, f'rinstance.
posted by nebulawindphone at 11:04 AM on February 7, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: 22 Kg! That's a lot of rice. Personally, I think I'd be tempted to try and flog some of it.
You can substitute long grain white rice in most Indian rice recipes that normally use basmati rice.
Here's a mushroom pilau rice for 4-6, you can substitute other vegetables for the 'rooms. Peas and/or carrots are good as are chick-peas.
8oz mushrooms, wiped over then either sliced (big) or quartered (small).
14 oz rice
2 tbsp oil or ghee
2 tsp black mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seed
0.5 tsp kalonji (a.k.a black cumin) seed
Small piece cinnamon stick
6 cardomom pods
1 onion finely diced
1-2 cloves garlic, finely diced
Water or stock, double the volume of the rice.
Salt to taste.

Heat oil, fry seeds for a minute or two until the mustard seeds begin to pop. Add the onion and garlic and cook until golden. Add mushrooms and rice and fry for a further minute.
Add the water or stock, bring to boil, then cover. Turn the heat right down and cook for a further 10-12 minutes until the water has been absorbed and the rice is cooked. Leave to stand for a further 5 minutes, season with salt and serve.

Serve with a curry, or on its own as a snack.
Jamaican food uses a lot of long-grain rice so you might look recipes along those lines.
Rice and peas is a classic example.
posted by SyntacticSugar at 11:57 AM on February 7, 2010

Oh, yeah. Forgot to say that you want to remove the cinnamon stick and definitely the cardomom pods before you serve.
And by cardomom, I mean cardamom.
posted by SyntacticSugar at 11:59 AM on February 7, 2010

Laurie Colwin's lemon rice pudding. Congee. You could make toasted rice powder for Thai dishes like larb. Riz et tomates, or hot sausage and red sauce over rice, for a change of pace. If you can acquire banana leaves, making curry rice and then baking them in the leaves is a-mazing. So good.

Safe easy (read: veggie or fruit) sushi, maybe--it won't be the end of the world that it isn't perfect sushi rice. Really.

Dry it out on baking sheets in the freezer or somewhere cold. Then use it to make fried rice, lots of it, with pork and egg or whatever you prefer.
posted by ifjuly at 12:40 PM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: Mediterranean carrot and lemon rice is another idea...with a food processor, box grater, mandoline, or a lot of patience and a good knife, julienne carrots and make cold rice salad with that, lemon juice, toasted pine nuts or plumped sultanas, and rice.

Stick it in soups as you like.
posted by ifjuly at 12:41 PM on February 7, 2010

Best answer: I had a similar situation with a lot of brown rice. I then found collection of recipes at Riceland. Blueberry Crisp was my favorite, but it's made with brown rice. I hope you find some white rice recipes you like!
posted by gakiko at 7:12 AM on February 8, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Hainan Chicken Rice. Super easy. Serves 5-7, depending on the size of the chicken.

For the chicken and rice:
  • 1 chicken
  • 5-6 'coins' ginger
  • 5-6 roughly chopped scallions
  • 2-3 tsp salt
  • 4 shallots, roughly chopped
  • rice

    for the sauce:
  • Chunkiang vinegar (black rice vinegar)
  • 2 thai chilis, or chili oil

    To Prepare:
    1. Fill a pot with cold water, ginger, scallions, salt and chicken. Make sure there's enough water to cover the chicken entirely.
    2. Heat the water over medium heat until the water is hot, but not simmering or boiling. You're aiming for 180F.
    3. Poach gently, never letting the water bubble, skimming occasionally (but not stirring!) until the juices from the chicken run clear, or an instant read in the thigh reads 175.
    4. Dunk the chicken into an ice bath immediately, and set aside. Strain and reserve the broth.
    5. Wash your desired quantity of rice. Chop the shallots, and put the rice, the shallots, and a splash of oil in a saucepan. Saute, stirring frequently, until fragrant.
    6. Pour 2x the volume of rice worth of broth (1.75x for jasmine rice) into the pot. Cover and simmer on low heat until the liquid is absorbed.
    7. Serve the chicken cold, chopped into longitudinal strips, over the rice. Serve with vinegar, chilis, and a few tablespoons of broth as a dipping sauce. (you could also add a bit of minced garlic and ginger)
    8. Freeze the remaining broth, and use it to cook the next chicken. The flavor will intensify over time.

  • posted by joshwa at 9:09 AM on February 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

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