~ "By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; Through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures." ~ "Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing" ~ "But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy." ~ "Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths."~

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Pressure Cooker Brown Rice...

Pressure Cooker Brown Rice... I suppose if someone would ask me what my most valuable kitchen tool would be, I'd have to answer the pressure cooker. Oh, I would probably fluctuate between my Kitchen-Aid mixer and the pressure cooker... but in the end the pressure cooker would probably win:)...

So here is another recipe that I need to post for my own personal reference...and for those of you who own a pressure cooker and care to try the recipe. I'll try to post other pressure cooker recipes in the future... but as with most of these pressure cooker recipes I'm posting, a regular pot can also be used. Obviously the cooking time is increased.

But you know, there are other methods(besides the pressure cooker) that can be applied when cooking brown rice... some methods can make the cooking process easier, while others can save you a bit of time. There's a method that's becoming more popular theses days. One that involves cooking the rice as you would pasta(in plenty of water)... the recipe can be found on the Saveur site.

If you have a rice cooker... well, it too, does an excellent job in cooking brown rice. Cooks the rice in about  40-45 minutes. But for the most part when cooking brown rice, I like to use my pressure cooker. Hope you enjoy...

Note: Original recipe doesn't have you soak the rice, I just do... so soak if you care to, or opt to skip it. 

Tip: I normally lightly salt the rice while cooking... as salt has the tendency to split the rice grains (as does over-mixing/stirring).

You will need: adapted from Cooking Under Pressure

1 cup long grain(or short grain) rice*
1 3/4 cup boiling water
1 TBS oil
1/4 cup chopped onion, optional
salt, to taste
pad of butter, optional, but really good
* I used long grain basmati brown rice


1. Wash and rinse rice. Soak rice in 2-3 cups of water for 30-40 minutes (this step is optional, but works especially well for basmati rice). Drain.
2. Heat pressure cooker pot on medium heat... and add oil. Heat oil for 30 seconds or so and add onion, if using. Cook onion for 2 minutes or so ... or until a bit soft. If not using onion, go to step 3.
3. Add drained rice to hot oil and cook stirring for a minute or until oil has coated the rice grains.
4. Add hot water and stir to combine. Season with salt.

5. Place lid on pot...and lock into place.
6. Increase heat to high and wait for pressure to be reached (pressure valve pops up).
7. When pressure has been reached, lower heat to low... and set timer for 15 minutes.
8. After 15 minutes, turn off heat and allow pressure to release naturally.... don't move the button to release the steam, nor place the pot under running water .... just allow the pressure to fall on its own.
9. Allow the pressure to release naturally ... keeping lid closed for an additional 10 minutes.
10. Remove lid... most/all of the water should have been absorbed by the rice, but in case there is still a bit of moisture, you can place it back on the stove and cook it for an additional minute (without the lid).... then add a pad of rice and fluff. Serve straightaway....


Judy said...

I'll have to try it. Did you use a full sized pressure cooker, or a pressure saucepan? I've got both and almost never use the saucepan size. I do use the big pot of boiling salt water, though for most grains. Nothing ever turns out starchy or sticky that way.

Ellie said...

Hi Judy, Yes, cooking rice in a big pot of salted water eliminates the starch and stickyness... and it's hassle-free for the most part. The method is excellent when you want the rice to be used in a salad or cold dish... though it can be used in hot dishes just as wel. The drained rice can be placed back on the stove to warm up.

But cooking the rice in the pressure cooker basically saves a bit of time, which is why I do it... plus it keeps some of the nutrients( especially if you don't rinse the rice).

But for this post I used used my 4 (QT) pressure cooker( it isn't a saucepan, nor is it the large size( 8QT)... I find I use the 4 QT most often. And I leave my 8QT for soups and bigger cuts of meats.

You know, I think if you have a method that works great for you, I would stick to it:).... I think we all cook according to what works best for each of us.

Anyway, I'm glad you stopped by... good to hear your feedback on the big pot of salted water. It might help others to try that method.... A fool-proof method of cooking great rice.

Andrea the Kitchen Witch said...

I've been thinking about getting a pressure cooker - the smaller 4 qt sounds like it's what I'd use most often. I have the hardest time with brown rice at my altitude. Do you know what your elevation is Ellie? I'm around 6000 ft :)

Ellie said...

Hi Andrea:),
You know, I live at 5000 ft, quite a bit less than you:). But I think I'm borderline to what most people would consider making certain changes in recipes of sorts.

Ever since I've moved here, I haven't really adjusted any baking/cooking times or ingredients to any of my recipes.... I know that's strange...but it may be that I just adjust without realizing it( like using a pressure cooker)... or I assume the result is what it should be:).

But I know baking/cooking times take longer at higher altitudes than at sea level just because the boiling point of water is lower at higher elevation (and therefore less heat), resulting in longer cooking times.

So in actuality, a pressure cooker helps tremendously in high altitude cooking... as it compensates for the loss of atmospheric pressure. It increases the temperature inside the cooker to bring it as close to sea level boiling point.

So in the end, a pressure cooker would be helpful for those of us living at higher altitudes:)... sorry about the long answer:). But hope that helps.

Andrea the Kitchen Witch said...

Ellie your reasonings are exactly as my own regarding pressure cooking. And yet I don't own one yet! That must change soon :) I can't wait to try it out, when I do I'll let you know how it goes. Thanks for your reply!

Ellie said...

You are welcome, Andrea. I enjoy using my pressure cooker... and if you get one, I hope you like using it as much as I do.

It does take some time to get used to the pressure cooker... timing, stove, etc. But after a few tries, you get better and better... and then you see what works for you. I just find food cooked in the pressure cooker tastes better. It's worth having one... even if you use it only for beans, rice, risotto and chicken stock... oh, and for shredded meat:).