Saturday, February 16, 2013

Rice Cubes

The nice powdery snow delivered by last weekend’s blizzard immediately converted to soggy puddles this week thanks to warm temperatures. I did not manage a single vicarious ski in the snow at least once. We will get new snow this weekend, even another blizzard. It feels like “blizzard, shoveling, work, repeat“ around here. Not sure how much snow it will be and how long it will stick around and how much opportunity for fresh air outdoor upper body exercise it will actually provide. But, alas, winter in Maine.

For a while I’ve been disturbed by the trend of people buying  precooked, ready to serve rice. Disturbed by the fact of how expensive those pre-cooked portions are compared to buying dry rice. Shakes her head. think about all the good shoes you could buy for that.

I admit that cooking just portions of rice can be cumbersome, but how about cooking a big batch, like 2 cups of dry rice, in the rice cooker and then freeze it. But then, how to freeze really small portions without fiddling too much with ceran wrap? The icecube tray!

Freezing: I cooked 2 cups of arborio rice (the smaller, and rounder the rice, the better this works, especially getting fluffy rice during reheating) with 4cups of water in the rice cooker. I let it slightly cool, and stuffed it into an ice cube tray. Freeze it for 12h (or less), run hot water over the bottom of the tray, and remove the cubes and place in freezer ziplock bag. Freeze in a ziplock bag.

Reheating: Correct reheating is key --- steaming it is important because otherwise the rice will be dry and crumbly if it is only warmed up in the microwave. Reheating is easily achieved by adding some water when reheating in the microwave, and also use a lid ----Place rice cubes in a microwave safe dish with a lid and microwave with ca 1 teaspoon of water per rice cube for ca. 1 min/frozen rice cube. (3 ice cubes, 1 TB of water, 2-3min). Place directly into soups and stews.

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