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It’s important to distinguish what separates good quality rice from bad quality rice, as this not only benefits the taste of our dishes but also our health. With so many people in the world today eating rice daily, there are also now so many different types of rice to choose from that not only vary in taste but quality as well.
With such different standards to pay attention to, here are some tips to keep in mind when selecting rice so you know you’ve got a superior batch for yourself every time.
The color of your rice should be bright without being too white, as the latter could mean it was artificially bleached. Properly stored rice will not be too yellowish, and the color of all grains should remain relatively consistent.
Good quality rice has a fine texture and is not easily broken when pressed. If the rice is easily broken once pressed, this means that it is not from a fresh batch and isn’t suitable for consumption.
All types of rice generally share the same natural aroma, and there are very few rice types containing artificial fragrances available in the market. It’s best to avoid this type of rice, as well as rice that smells moldy or stale.
Ensure that the rice you’re choosing is free from impurities like dirt, lice, or small rocks. Lice often mean that the rice is old and not cleaned properly.
Other than looking into general rice quality, you should also consider the type and length of rice you’re buying which affects the outcome of your dish. Long-grain rice like basmati comes out light and dry, making it ideal for dishes like pilaf or biryani. Short-grain rice, on the other hand, is stickier and clumps together, making it ideal for dishes like paella, sushi, and rice pudding. Lastly, medium-grain rice is fluffier and often eaten as a side to meals throughout Asia.
While it’s important for most households to buy rice that fits within their budget, it’s incredibly important not to sacrifice quality for a cheap price tag. Choose a rice variant that is within your budget without sacrificing the freshness and taste, and ensure that the source you’re buying your rice from is trusted and lab-certified so you know it is safe for consumption.
While there are many trusted sources to buy rice from in the market, there are also many that shouldn’t be trusted. The best way to know for yourself whether rice is good quality, perfect for your cooking needs, and safe to eat is by testing them with these general tips. Keeping an eye out for certain flaws will easily help you save yourself from bad quality rice and consistently have safe and healthy rice on your table.