Here’s a Great Grain Tip!

Have you ever tried to make beautiful, perfectly steamed Basmati rice, each grain a perfectly singular individual? That kind of awesome, fragrant, smooth rice? I have, many times, and I’d never gotten it right. I didn’t know what I was missing. I bought more expensive rice, different kinds, I tried steaming it in different amounts of water, and all I got was more of the same, sub-par, mildly sticky rice. Not pretty or fragrant at all. 

A few weeks ago, Bronson and I made a Moroccan curry for dinner. It was pretty good, but I want to make it again and snazz it up a bit before I put it on this blog. One of the ingredients in this curry were red lentils. I had never tried cooking my own lentils before, and I was a bit apprehensive that they would turn out like my sub-par rice. Thank god for on the package directions. 

The first direction was to rinse and soak the lentils. I’d never seen this before. I did as I was instructed, and poured the lentils into a bowl and filled it with water. Then, I mixed them around with my fingers. I noticed that the water in the bowl got a bit foggy.

You can really see it around the edge of the bowl. I kept washing and rinsing the lentils (I just tipped the bowl to the side and let the water fall through my fingers, carefully, so that I didn’t lose any lentils) until the water in the bowl was clean. I let the lentils soak for 20 minutes before we added them to the curry. I guess letting them soak up some water before the steaming process begins allows the grains to just cook inside the steam instead of soaking it in? Maybe I know what I’m talking about?

Either way, it worked great! We cooked the lentils inside the curry with broth, and they came out perfectly. They weren’t mushy or stuck together. These lentils had a great texture, the exact degree of firmness. Bronson and I were going to eat this curry with Basmati rice, so I did the same thing for that! Washed the rice, rinsed it, let it soak for at least 20 minutes (I’m guessing the more of a grain you’re preparing, the longer you should let it soak) and I finally had that beautiful Basmati rice that I’ve been so envious of. Those gorgeous, little individual grains of rice that smelled like heaven.

I do this now for every grain that I use in cooking. I wanted to share this great tip with y’all so that you can save yourselves from sub-par rice! 


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