Coconut Rice

My earliest experiences with rice led me to believe that {instant rice + water + 5 minutes = done}. Later experiments with parboiled rice revised that equation to {pouch of rice + 90 seconds = done}.  While those certainly are acceptable equations for rice, and quick ones at that, there are many other formulas that one can use so that {rice + liquid + time = done}.

I had a roommate from Portugal who made a fantastic baked rice dish.  It required no stirring and no fussing.  Rice, water, and onions went into the oven and came out perfectly cooked.  I regret never getting her to write it down for me.  Maybe if I ask the Googley, I can find something similar to G’s Baked Rice.

In the meantime, I continue to conduct the occasional experiment to see what kind of rice goodness I can create in my kitchen.  The latest equation involved jasmine rice and coconut milk.  I wouldn’t exactly say this produced outstanding rice.  If the scale I’m using to evaluate the results is 1 (boil in bag mush) to 10 (Chipotle’s cilantro lime rice….my absolute favorite), Coconut Rice is a solid 3 or 4.  It’s easy enough to prepare but the rice tends to get thick and gummy.  Maybe if I had rinsed the rice before putting it in the water my grains wouldn’t have stuck together quite as much.  Or maybe something like basmati would have been a better choice to use instead of jasmine.

So as a side dish on my dinner table, Coconut Rice doesn’t really make the cut.  But with a few adjustments, I could see this being the base for a great Coconut Rice Pudding as dessert.

Coconut Rice

Adapted from A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cup jasmine rice
  • 1 (14 ounces) can light coconut milk
  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • juice and zest of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, minced

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add the salt and rice and stir until the rice is completely coated with the oil.  Stir in the coconut milk and water.  Bring to a boil then cover and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the rice is tender.  Add the lime juice, taste for seasoning and add salt as necessary.

Serve garnished with minced cilantro.

{printable recipe}