Make Your Own Japanese-Style White Rice  

White rice is consumed across the globe. Plain white rice, steamed, stir-fried, eaten for breakfast, lunch, as a snack, or for supper, is present everywhere and in every household.However, there are cultures in which this grain is a staple ingredient and is present at every meal, like in Japan.

White rice in Japan  

It is believed that rice was first cultivated in eastern Asia more than 10,000 years ago and then introduced to the Japanese culture.The island of Kyushu holds the earliest record of rice cultivation, dating back to the Jomon era. This grain has become so popular that rice cultivation paddies are an archetypical landscape in Japan. Rice paddies are found everywhere; due to Japan’s mountainous terrain, farmers dammed up rivers and changed their courses to build canals and make a system that can regulate and store water like dams to control floods and provide their people with rice. This activity requires communal effort, it involves many steps followed by community groups and farmers that work together, helping each other by sharing water resources, warding off pests, and helping with planting and harvesting the crops.

Back in time, from the 7th century to the Edo era, rice was extremely precious and available to the rich and powerful: it was used to pay taxes to feudal lords and even the samurais received their salaries in rice. Basically, white rice was reserved for the upper class and the lower class ate other grains or brown rice. It was in the Meiji era that the industrialization of white rice made it affordable and available to the masses.

Nowadays, even though rice consumption per capita has been declining (perhaps due to a shift to a more westernized diet and a shrink in population as well), rice continues to be the number one staple ingredient, widely consumed across Japan.

Numerous ways of eating Japanese-style rice  

Gohan is the Japanese term for rice, which is also used to refer to supper or a meal; it is always short grain, and mostly consumed steamed. You may have noticed that Japanese rice is not the same as European rice or Latin American rice (which, of course, makes a lot of sense given that each culture adds its own special touches to its meals). It is typically eaten as a side dish with miso soup, pickled vegetables, seafood or vegetables and for breakfast, tamago kake gohan, raw egg and soy sauce on top of white steamed rice is very popular as well.When rice is pounded into flour, the Japanese also make mochi. This is a dessert that has a sticky texture, and it may be filled with red bean paste, matcha paste or many other regional flavors.

Make your own Japanese rice  

 What you’ll need 

 Make it step by step 

  1. First gather your ingredients and pour water over your white rice. One of the most important steps to make the perfect Japanese-style rice is to wash it thoroughly, so wash it and throw away the water, until it becomes almost clear. This removes the excess starch.
  2. Now you are going to use a colander to drain all water from the white rice. Set aside for, at least, thirty minutes.
  3. The best way to cook Japanese-style rice is by using a rice cooker. To do it, you need to put the soaked and rested rice in the cooker and add your cups of water. Leaving it an extra thirty minutes to an hour to rest is ideal. Start the rice cooker and stop it when finished. Leave the lid on and let the cooker steam for about fifteen minutes. Fluff the rice with a spatula and serve.
  4. If you do not own a rice cooker, you can also cook the rice in a pot. After cleaning the rice, soak the grains in a pot for thirty minutes to an hour. Cover the rice with a lid and place the pot on the stove over high heat. Bring the water to a boil and then turn the heat down. Cook the rice over low heat for about twenty minutes, then turn off the heat and let the rice steam for about fifteen minutes before removing the lid. Fluff the rice with a spatula and serve.

Now you can make your own Japanese-style white rice, with its neutral flavor and versatility you can use it in any recipe you wish. Enjoy!

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Lee Clarke
Lee Clarke
Business And Features Writer


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