Japanese rice can be cooked in a rice cooker or also in a traditional pot kept on stove. But if you know nothing about cooking Japanese rice, let us begin from the basics. Japanese rice is a typical short grain rice and is a staple food of Japan. It is the primary source of protein. Rice is cooked for all meals and the accompanying gravy or meat may differ. It is easy to cook Japanese rice in a rice cooker as you get all the bells and whistles that tell you when the rice is done. Today, most Asian homes own a rice cooker for the convenience it offers to cooking. But for those who do not own one, and want to cook Japanese rice, here are some steps. You can make Japanese rice over the stove in a pot in case your cooker breaks or while you need to cook rice while camping outdoors.
Short-Grain Rice is Different from Other Types of Rice
Japanese rice has short grains unlike the typical Basmati rice or jasmine rice. If you want to cook Japanese rice at home, you can cook it simply in a pot of boiling water to get a pot of steaming, glossy and tender rice. This rice can be enjoyed with gravies, vegetables or meat. The cooking method for different kinds of rice is the same, although the timing may differ.
The Rice to Water Ratio for Short-Grain Rice
The Japanese follow a golden rule for making rice and that is they use the ration 1:1.1 or 1.2. This ratio can be read as 10 to 20% more water than the rice to cook it perfectly. Do not use the ratio of 1:1 as it may leave the rice uncooked. In a rice cooker, you need to add 180 ml of rice for 200 ml of water.
3 Important Tips When Cooking Japanese Short Grain Rice
When you have to cook Japanese rice the right way, you should follow the below-mentioned tips:
- Always soak the rice for 30 minutes:
This prevents the rice for breaking while cooking. The rice has been stored in a bag and is quite dry. When you soak it, it absorbs some moisture and revives its original texture. If you soak rice and cook it, it will turn out to be fluffier.
- Do not open the lid while cooking:
Do not open the lid to check how the rice is cooking before time. Doing so will escape all the steam that is essential for proper cooking. The last ten minutes of steaming rice in its own steam is very important to retain the aroma and the texture. Else, you may get to eat dry and unflavoured rice.
- Use a heavy-bottom pan with a tight-fitting lid:
A heavy bottom pan will prevent the rice from getting burnt while cooking. The tight-fitting lid will prevent the steam from escaping and this will ensure that the rice is cooked well.
These are some essential steps to follow while cooking Japanese rice.