Monday, January 26, 2009

What Can Brown Rice Do For You?

I've been blessed with the Asian gene where I don't have to watch what I eat. Between 3 pickup games (sometimes 4 if I'm lucky) a week and general puttering around the house, I can basically eat whatever I feel like and regulate the waistband. I've gone two driver's license renewals (over 7 years) and still have the same weight on the driver's license give or take 2-3 lbs.

That said, I'm getting that middle age gene where you try (brainwashed?) to eat more healthy. On a whim, I bought a 20 lb bag of brown rice. I've enjoyed brown rice sushi and thought this would be a healthier transition for us. Maceo is cool with rice as long as it comes with a dash of furikake nori. His favorite dish is salmon teriyaki mixed with rice and peas and a dusting of nori. Dude can put it away and hold up his scraped dish proudly.

We're two weeks in. Is there such a thing as rice regret? I think I have it.

It took a damn week to figure out the water-to-rice ratio and I still haven't perfected it. I'm tossing in an extra 3/4 cup of water and it still comes out al dente which blows ass. It doesn't sit well overnight. The tipping point was when I made a pot roast. I made a gravy with the drippings and naturally dumped it over the brown rice. The homestyle treat that appears in many bento boxes suddenly didn't make sense. Gravy is inherently evil in the healthy food department and brown rice sits at the other end of the spectrum. It was like driving to a Green Party rally.

I think this dilemma is going to haunt other tasty specialties I make. Bacon fried rice, my usual go-to leftover rice dish, will just seem odd with brown. Or brown rice Spam musubi. I can't bring that over to the Super Bowl party; I'll get my ass kicked.

Thankfully, Maceo is good for any kind of rice as long as it comes with a nori sidecar. Wifey is OK with it as she's more on a health jag than me but I can tell she misses the white sticky stuff. I miss it too, especially the smell of a freshly made pot of jasmine rice. Brown rice smells like a paper bag or a rolled up newspaper. This may be a quick experiment.

Any brown rice-files out there? What the hell is wrong with me?



Rachel said...

We have a zojirushi (sp?) with a brown rice setting, and it comes out perfect. You can also do brown rice in a covered dish in the oven. Use a 2/1 ratio of water to rice, and cook at 400 for about 45 min or until water is absorbed.

amy said...

We also have a brown rice setting on our rice cooker and noticed a huge difference in the rice. We also mix brown sweet rice in with our brown rice to get some of the sticky texture! Good luck!

Anonymous said...

my mom's a diabetic, so white rice is not the preferred, the dr. told her to get down with brown. it did NOT go well. anyhow, in the end, she ended up doing a combo of 1 part brown rice:2 (2.5) parts white rice. and she seems happier now (as is her dr.).

good luck.

Mama Nabi said...

That's all you need. It even plays a little music when the rice is done. Ta Da.

Henri said...

Dude I'm from Berkeley....brown rice is for sissies. We're eating quinoa.

It's great with bacon and sour cream and whisky and fudge.

Soccer Dad said...

Investigating all leads zojirushi. It looks like the iMac of rice cookers.

Anonymous said...

A Zojirushi rocks, I have one and will never give it up. Brown rice is good, it can even be yummy with that nutty taste. But I've always believed that no self respecting Asian (of any percentage) would ever ONLY eat brown rice. A combo of 2:1 white:brown works well. Good luck getting through that 20lb bag!

Soccer Dad said...

Holy crap. The Neuro Fuzzy one is $160! And it takes almost an 45 minutes to an hour to cook brown rice! Is this normal?

Anonymous said...

unfortunately the rice cookers are that expensive. but if you are ok with it not being too sticky but just want it to cook more than al dente, you may want to soak your brown rice for a few hours before you cook it. my mom keeps it soaking in the fridge overnight and then cooks it the next day. and she also uses some brown sweet rice too. . . hope you have better luck! we do all brown in my house too. . . .

SoulSnax said...

WTF is Zojirushi? Brown Rice setting?

I got my rice cooker at the dollar store, so there's no brand name or brown rice setting. All I do is use the 2:1 water to brown rice ratio, plug it in and press the button. Voila, you have brown rice in 20 min.

And, yes, I use tap water.

Anonymous said...

Soak the rice for 2.5 hours.

christina said...

Zojirushi is a brand name for a rice cooker. It does that that long to cook rice, it also has other settings like sushi (45 min), regular (50), and some other ones I can't remember but like for flavored, if you use chicken broth, etc. It's worth the price. I didn't know other rice cookers cooked rice in such a short amount of time...20 minutes?! Really, is it cooked through? I think the wait for a Zoji is worth it though, it's always perfect when it's done.

christina said...

It should read "It does TAKE that long to cook". Sorry.

Anonymous said...

my sis and i switched to brown rice a few years ago. my mom gave us one of those fuzzy logic rice cookers that does the job! it's much faster and softer though if you soak the rice first. soak it in the morning or overnight and it is super soft and tasty. and yes... we use it for kimchi fried rice w/ spam and it is still hella tasty!

KP said...

Why cant you just have both in your pantry and switch off once in a while for variety? Dilemma solved! Rice has a pretty long shelf life so its probably not going to go bad.
White rice IS the best though...yumm!

thisislarry said...

hmmm, I'm stuck somewhere between Soul Snax and Zojirushi lust.

I'd be able to better justify buying one of these machines than a home theater receiver or a capuccino robot, that's for sure.

Our dolla-store rice cooker is bombproof tho, I dont think it will break down in my lifetime. Maybe it will have to have an 'accident'....

thisislarry said...

oooh, another vote for lust:

the neuro fuzzy with some design-y bits.... -L

Soccer Dad said...

We have a Toshiba Chime-O-Matic that's served me well for damn near 17 years. It's survived multiple moves and makes perfect rice in 20 minutes. I'm going to try soaking the rice before I leave for work then hit cook when I get home. Hopefully that will do the job.

Ed L. said...

Why don't you go with haiga-mai (more polished than brown rice, but not as polished as white rice) - it's a pretty nice compromise between the two.

mary said...

I despise thee.... brown rice.

Anonymous said...

Armageddon Thru To You

If you've been wondering why it seems like the world around us is unraveling, it's because the last days as foretold in the bible are now upon us. Just as it was 2000 years ago, many were unable to discern the signs of Jesus Christ's first coming (Mat 16:3), as will many concerning his second coming, which will occur very soon. Yes many have proclaimed a similar sentiment many times in the past, but their errors have no bearing on today other than to lull you into spiritual apathy, and that too was prophesied to occur in the last days.

If you're not a believer in Jesus Christ because you're an atheist, consider that the underlying impetus for your disbelief is most likely borne of pride and here's why:

When we die, if you as an atheist were right, then there is no upside or downside for anyone regarding the afterlife. We will all simply cease to exist

However if we Christians were right about our belief in the afterlife, then we will be given eternal life and you as an atheist will receive eternal damnation

Given the choices, the position held by an atheist is a fools bet any way you look at it because the atheist has everything to lose and nothing to gain. It is tantamount to accepting a “heads I win, tails you lose” coin toss proposition from someone. And that someone by the way is Satan (see Ephesians 6:12).

The only way to explain the attitude held by an atheist is pride, pure and simple. The intellectually dishonest and/or tortured reasoning used by atheists to try and disprove the existence of God is nothing more than attempts to posture themselves as superior (a symptom of pride). And as anyone who has read their bible knows, this is precisely the character flaw that befell Lucifer, God's formerly most high angel. (Isaiah 14:12-15). Is it any wonder then why the bible is so replete with references to pride as the cause of mankind's downfall?

Pride permeates our lives and burdens us in ways that most of us seldom recognize. Ironically, pride is the one thing that can blind someone to things even the unsighted can see. And sadly pride will blind many with an otherwise good heart, to accepting the offer of eternal salvation that Christ bought and paid for with his life.

In any event, if you're an atheist, I wish you only the best for every day of the rest of your life because for you, this life is as close to heaven as you'll ever get, but for believers in Christ, this life is as close to hell as we'll ever get.

If you're not a believer and follower of Jesus Christ because you are of another faith, please take the time to very carefully compare your faith to Christianity and ask yourself, why is the bible the only religious book with both hundreds of proven prophecies already fulfilled as well as those being fulfilled today? No other religion can claim anything remotely close to this fact. Many Christians who are serious students of bible prophecy are already aware of the role and significance of bible prophecy in foretelling end time events. God gave us prophecy as evidence of his divine holiness to know the begining from the end (Isa 46:10). God also believed prophecy to be so important that to those willing to read the most prophetic book in the bible, the Book of Revelation, he promised a special blessing (see Rev 1:3), and this is the only book in the bible that God gives its reader a special blessing for reading. Something to think about.

Don't risk losing Christ's offer of eternal life by not accepting him as your savior and by thinking that the bible is nothing more than a compilation of unrelated and scattered stories about people who lived 2,000 plus years ago. If you take the time to study (not just read) the bible, you will literally be shocked to learn things you would have never imagined would be revealed in it. Did you know that like parables, God also uses particular months and days in the Jewish calendar, Jewish Feasts and customs, solar and lunar phases, celestial alignments, gematria (Hebrew numerology) early bible events and more as patterns and models to foretell future events?

Consider the following interesting facts about the bible that testify to its God-inspired authorship:

Did you know that in Gen 12:2, God said he would bless Israel?. How else can you explain the grossly disproportionate level of success achieved by Jewish people as a tiny minority in the world, especially after all they have gone through? And how can you explain the success achieved by the tiny nation of Israel, surrounded by enemies outnumbering them 100 to 1 and yet still they remain victorious in all their wars?

Did you know that as evidence to indicate that Israel is the epicenter of the world from God's point of view is the fact that languages to the west of Israel are written and read from left to right as if pointing to Israel, and languages from countries to the east of Israel are written and read from right to left, again as though pointing to Israel. Just a coincidence, you say? I think not.

Did you know that the six days of creation and seventh day of rest in Genesis is a model for the six thousand years of this age (ending very soon), that is to be followed by a 1,000 year millennial reign by Christ (see 2 Peter 3:8)? Adam was born sometime prior to 4000 B.C., therefore our 6000 years are almost up.

Did you kow that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is hidden in the meaning of the Hebrew names listed in the genealogy of the book of Genesis (Research it online)? To deny this was God-inspired, one has to instead believe that a group of Jewish rabbis conspired to hide the Christian Gospel right inside a genealogy of their venerated Torah, which is not a very plausible explanation.

Did you know that solar eclipses, which the bible describes as the sun being black as sackcloth, and lunar eclipses, which the bible refers to as blood red moons, have prophetic meaning? Research it online. God showed Adam (and us) his plan for man's redemption through the use of celestial alignments. (research Mazzaroth online)

Did you know that much of the symbolism in the book of revelation refers to planetary alignments that will occur when certain events occur as prophesied? These planetary alignments also explained the birth of Christ, just search out The Bethlehem Star movie on the Internet.

Did you know that the references in Eze 39:4-17 and Rev 19:17-21 in the battle of Gog/Magog and Armageddon respectively, in which birds of prey will eat the flesh of the dead in battle from two enormous wars is based on fact? The largest bird migration in the world consisting of bilions of birds (34 species of raptors and various carrion birds) from several continents converge and fly over Israel every spring and fall. Coincidence? I think not.

Did you know that Hebrew numerology, also known as Gematria, and the numbers with biblical and prophetic significance are hidden in the Star of David? Google the video called "Seal of Jesus Christ"

Did you know that the seven Churches mentioned at the beginning of the Book of Revelation describe the seven stages the Church will go through?

There are literally hundreds of hidden messages in the bible like these that testify to the fact that the bible was God inspired, and statistically speaking, are all exponentially beyond the likelihood of any coincidence. You can find them yourselves if you only take the time to look into it. Remember Proverbs 25:2 "It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings".

And finally, if you are Catholic, or one who subscribes to the emergent Church or seeker-friendly Church movement, please compare the doctrine taught, advocated or accepted by your Church, with the actual bible, notwithstanding some new-age version of the bible. And remember that although the bible is often referred to as the living bible, the word "living" was never intended to imply in any way that the bible "evolves" over time to meet, or be consistent with, the standards of man. It's just the opposite.

Well, am I getting through to you? If not, the answer might be explained in the response given by Jesus Christ in his Olivet discourse when he was asked by his disciples why he spoke the way he did (in parables, etc.) in the book of Matthew 13:10-16. What Jesus said could have easily been paraphrased more clearly as "so that the damned won't get it". Why did Christ respond the way he did when asked why he spoke this way? Is there something about pride (the bible says there is) that closes one's heart to seeing or hearing the messages supernaturally hidden in bible parables, models, typologies, and similes, etc.? That should give you something to think about, but don't take too long. Time is now very short.

If it sometimes seems like there are powers at work behind the powers we know in this world, or sinful/evil influences in your life, remember what it says in Ephesians 6:12 "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." If you study the bible, it will become clearer.

Did you know that God said to those unwilling to love the words of his truth and be saved, he would send them a strong delusion so that they would believe a lie. See 2 Thesalonians 2:10-11. Have you considered what this strong delusion might be? (i.e., evolution, climate change, or ?)

Have you considered the following. With so many self-professed Christians in the world, how is it possible that the bible can state that so few would find the path to eternal life (See Mat 7:14)? The answer: many Christians who practice Christianity practice an apostate version of it, and will ultimately not be county worthy (Luke 21:36) to escape God's wrath.

And by the way, if you are a scoffer, this too was prophesied to occur in the last days. See 2 Peter 3:3.

Thank you and God Bless you! (at)

Henri said...


...and wtf did that have anything to do with Brown Rice?

Our salvation lies in Quinoa. If you had read my comment it would have saved your spam.

Hmmm Quinoa and spam. Should have thought of that long ago!

Anonymous said...

Hi! New. Came from KimchiMamas.

The key to brown rice is letting it soak. Add a little more water (sorry I'm old school and use my fist to measure my rice/water ratio) and let it sit for a few hours before cooking. Should do the trick.

But, you're right, it doesn't hold well until the next day. And kimbap tends to be a little more loose. :-)

Anonymous said...

We've tried switching more over to brown rice, too. The other day I made jasmine rice again for the first time in a while. My husband: "It tastes like it was milled by angels." And it really did. :)

Pamela Morgan said...

I love brown rice but was surprised to learn that white rice usually has more vitamins. The main benefit of brown rice is that it has more roughage. If we eat a good diet of vegetables we should get plenty.

I've switched back to white and only occasionally eat brown.

Anonymous said...

I'm very happy with brown rice with the exception of sushi rolls. I love brown rice bentos and dons too! Sometimes I use basmati brown rice. Last night I just used normal brown rice and it turned out pretty well, with a slightly sticky texture. I use a rice cooker but not a special one.

Anonymous said...

we have a pressure cooker/rice cooker so guess what, brown rice in 20-30 minutes. i use the old ancient method of finger measurement for water. where ever your middle finger lands on the top of the level of the brown rice, allow water up to the first digit, slightly over it. key is brown rice takes bit more water than white.

Anonymous said...

that wasn't clear. middle finger the line right below your nail, where your finger can bend, that first line..good luck. my brown rice comes out great everytime, fluffy, but honestly, nothing beats white rice.

Unknown said...


I'm new to this blog.

Anyway, there's a whole bunch of different types of rice besides polished white round grain (japonica) rice. Try them all.

There are other grains, too. The distant ancestors of those with Asian genes began their agricultural period eating millet. I don't know what it tastes like, but it might be worth a try.

Being diabetic myself, I have to limit my total carb intake. In practice, this means cutting down drastically on white rice. But cutting down does not mean total elimination. East the white rice on special occasions or for favorite foods only.