I used to go by the bag when it came to cooking rice. The problem I kept running into was not getting the same consistency. It's very frustrating to want fluffy rice for dinner and end up with sticky rice. Then, try making a fun stir-fry dinner and end up with fluffy rice. I'm good with using chopsticks, but not that patient.
Sometime back, it could have been 6 months ago, maybe it was two years ago, I've slept since then, I came across an old cookbook entitled, James Beard's Theory & Practice of Good Cooking. It dates back to 1977. (Let's see, in 1977, I was 9 years old, learning to do The Hustle, and playing with my Sonny & Cher dolls or Donny & Marie.) Anyhoo.
Inside the book is a wealth of information I can groove on. The first recipe I put to the test was boiling rice. I figured that if this book could teach how to REALLY cook rice the way I liked when I liked it, it was a keeper. Today, I still have the book and I read it first when I have a cooking question.
HERE'S ALL IT TAKES TO MAKING FLUFFY LONG-GRAIN RICE
- 4 quarts water
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 cups long-grain rice
In a large 6- 8-quart pot, get the water to a rapid boil over high heat. Add the salt. Add the rice and give it a quick stir to make sure it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan. Make sure the water continues to boil. Boil the rice rapidly for 15 minutes, uncovered, then drain through a sieve. Do not overcook, UNLESS, you want sticky rice. (That's another post.)
This will give you fluffy rice with well-separated grains, slightly firm to the bite. If the rice seems a little moist and not fluffy, after draining return it to the pan and dry out over a very low heat for 2 or 3 minutes, stirring occasionally with a fork to fluff it up.