Types of Rice: From Basmati to Parboiled

A creamy risotto, sweet rice pudding, or sushi: Without the right type of rice, these dishes would not be successful. Read which rice is suitable for what.

Little basic knowledge of rice varieties

Rice is a staple food characterized by healthy nutritional values. For example, the German Society for Nutrition (DGE) considers grain products such as rice to be important suppliers of energy, which should be an integral part of a wholesome diet. Whole grain varieties are to be preferred because they provide more dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals and keep you full for longer than shelled grain. When it comes to rice, natural rice or brown rice consists of the whole grain, including the germ and silver skin – it is often available in organic quality. Other varieties also belong to the whole grain variety. Below you will find an overview of the varieties with tips for the corresponding rice dishes, such as our homemade rice cakes.

The classics: white rice, parboiled rice, brown rice

The peeled white rice has its place in the kitchen as a side dish. With its neutral taste, it goes well with meat, fish, and vegetables and is a good sauce catcher. The polished grain releases very little starch into the cooking water, so this rice doesn’t stick together and stays fluffy. Brown rice has a nutty flavor and takes almost twice as long to cook as husked rice. If that takes too long, but still doesn’t want to do without the nutritional values ​​of whole grain rice, parboiled rice can be a good compromise. Although this variety is peeled, it is partially cooked beforehand (“partially boiled”). As a result, vitamins and minerals are pressed into the grain and retained. Cooking time and properties are the same as white rice.

The specialists: risotto rice and rice pudding

Rice with sticky properties is better suited for dishes such as risotto, sushi, and desserts – this makes the dishes nice and creamy, and firm. Due to its higher starch content, short-grain and medium-grain rice meet this requirement. The rice varieties Arborio, Carnaroli, and Vialone are often used for risotto recipes, and short-grain rice is always used for our rice pudding and other variants such as our rice pudding cake. Special sticky rice is available for sushi – which, by the way, is also fantastic for sweet desserts such as e.g. B. Coconut rice with mango is suitable.

The exotics: basmati, jasmine, red rice, and black rice

The long-grain varieties basmati and jasmine are popular in Asian cuisine. Real basmati rice grows mainly at the foot of the Himalayas, is characterized by a slightly earthy aroma and is therefore ideal for our Thai-style fried rice. The delicate jasmine rice, on the other hand, spreads a floral scent, which is easy to eat with chopsticks thanks to its slightly sticky consistency. Incidentally, the fragrant rice develops its aroma from within itself, not through the addition of jasmine. Try basmati and jasmine rice in the Asian classics nasi goreng or lentil curry. Black rice is a whole grain variety with a strong nutty flavor, red rice is also natural rice that gets its color from growing in clayey soil.

Types of rice that are not rice at all

In addition to the types of rice mentioned, there are products that go by the name of rice but are botanically not rice at all. This includes wild rice, which with its black, thin grains also stands out visually from other types of rice. With its nutty flavors and firm bite, the paddy rice goes well with a rice salad with tuna, for example. Products like spelled rice are so called because they look and use something similar to rice – but they are grains.

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