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Rice, is the main source of food for about half of the world's population, which is probably the reason why it is the symbol for life and fertility in many cultures around the world.
Rice is a complex carbohydrate - it provides high levels of energy, yet it has a slow energy release. It also contains protein used for growth and repair of the body and provide 11% of the Estimated Daily Requirement of protein for an adult.
What's so good about rice? It is...
- high in nutrients,
- low in calories
- cholesterol, fat & gluten-free, &
Rice is also a great ‘pick-me-up’ food – a carbohydrate, it has been shown to relieve ‘winter blues’ by enhancing the synthesis of Serotonin in the brain, which in turn regulates mood and appetite.
There are more than 40,000 different varieties of rice.
Rice is cultivated in over 100 countries and on every continent except Antarctica.
On cooking, rice swells to give at least three times its original weight.
Potassium: Required for energy, and to maintain metabolic & cell function. It regulates hydration, acidity, blood pressure, muscle function, nerve signal transmission.
Iron: required for haemoglobin, which carries oxygen in the blood; also necessary for myoglobin which helps muscles store oxygen.
Pantothenic Acid: required in the process of producing, transporting & releasing energy from fat; reduces cholesterol.
Phosphorous: required for strong teeth & bones; also aids in the release of energy from fat, protein & carbohydrates and in the formation of genetic material, cell membranes & some enzymes.
Vitamin E: protects Vitamin A & essential fatty acids from oxidation in cells & prevents the breakdown of body tissue.
Fibre: lowers cholesterol, improves digestive processes & may protect against heart disease.
Vitamin B6: required to process amino acids, the building blocks of all proteins, and some hormones. It is required for the formation of Serotonin, Melatonin, Dopamine & the formation of some neurotransmitters, hence affecting mood and thinking.
Vitamin B/ Thiamine: required to process carbohydrates, fat & protein. Essential for the formation of ATP – the fuel the body runs on.
Vitamin B3/ Niacin: required for releasing energy from carbohydrate &, regulate cholesterol.
Magnesium: required for formation of bone, cell & protein formation, relaxing muscles, clotting blood, lowering blood pressure, insulin secretion among others.
Folacin: helps in the formation of red blood cells & genetic material.
SOME TYPES OF RICE
Deep Honey-red colour. Minimally processed to retain bran layers. Savoury, nutty flavour; slightly chewy.
Cooking time approx. 45-50 minutes
Rice: Cooking Liquid = 1: 2.25 (250ml:562ml)
Plumb, refined short-medium grain rice; has a white dot in the centre. Absorbs liquids without turning mushy. Used in risottos, as it develops a creamy texture, while maintaining a chewy texture. Absorbs flavours well.
Rice: Cooking Liquid = Determined by recipe ingredients
A plump, moist, tender, medium grain rice. Cooks with a slightly sticky texture. When cooked with a little less water, it is used for sushi rice.Rice: Cooking Liquid = 1: 1.16 (250ml:275ml)
Japanese Short Grain Rice
Soft, yet firm texture when cooked; grains cling together, yet remain separate.
Rice: Cooking Liquid = 1: 1.25 (250ml:312ml)
Stored correctly, rice will keep for a considerable time. It needs to be kept dry to prevent development of bacteria.
This is intended as a reference guide only.
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