Rice always seems so simple and ordinary and simple to most Americans like myself. But when I talk to my friend, who is asian, one never talks about how rice tastes or what you can do with rice in the kitchen. She says things like, how can you eat without rice or who will put the rice on your table, ie. who brings home the bacon. Rice takes on a whole new meaning, one in which a culture older than any on earth revolves around.
When I moved, before anything was moved into the apartment, she said, where is your rice? I thought I wasn't hearing right and she said, before you move anything into a new home, the rice and salt must go first or the balance of the house will never be correct.
In a chinese house the rice is always washed, rinsed five or six times until the water is clear and in some traditional provinces, the water from this is saved and used to wash the wok. The rice starched water degreases the wok and keeps it from rusting avoiding the necessity of re-seasoning the wok. The rice water in the Philippines has also been used as a whitening agent for laundry in days not very long ago. The water for cooking the rice is never measured in a cup, with the rice in the pot and your finger resting on top of the rice, add wter to the first crease of the finger and that's it. And in a pinch, rice can be formed into a paste to make a glue that rivals Elmer's.
Rice has traveled the world and although not as mythologized as it is in Asia, it's use in the cuisines of the world is at the top of the food chain. Risotto from Italy, Paella from Spain, and America where the perfect rice is considered to be that in which each grain is separate and fluffy after cooking as opposed to asian rice which needs to be starchy and stuck together so as to be able to be eaten with chop sticks or formed into balls and eaten with hands.
This Philipinno sweet rice is simple to make and will disappear before you can blink and turn around. A wonderful treat or dessert.
A FILIPINO TREAT
. 2C malagkit ( rice )
1. Cook the rice until water is absorbed
1C monggo (mung beans ), boiled, drained
1. Boil the monggo, drain and mash
The most wonderful thing about risotto is that the main flavor ingredients are endless. You can make a seafood risotto with shrimp. You can make a vegetarian risotto with vegetable stock and squash or any veggie of your desire. Wild mushroom risotto......Safron risotto.... and on and on. No doubt about it, risotto will be the jewel of the meal.
3T extra virgin olive oil
1. Heat the oil in a wide pot
The national dish of Spain. And much like risotto, the added ingredient determines the name of the paella. Simple , huh? In Spain there is rabbit paella, a squid ink paella, and of course, Paella de Valencia.
Paella a la Valenciana - 14 " paella pan
The one we all think of when we hear paella .
C fish stock
# lobster shelled , cut into pieces . You can leave
oven to 375 and bring the stock to a simmer . Heat the oil in paella pan
and sear the lobster 1
Do not overcook
the rice . If it is crunchy but close , remove from oven and allow to finish
cooking outside .