Brown Rice: Not Just for Hippies Anymore


In 1969, I ate my first bowl of plain, boiled brown rice, then proceeded to live on it for a week, replicating the diet of a hippie girl to whom I hoped to demonstrate my sex appeal. (It didn’t work.) Twenty years later, brown rice became a minor but regular part of my repertory.

Now brown rice has not only lost its hippie stigma; it has also become sort of de rigueur, though it’s mostly relegated to a dull side dish served underneath or next to something more interesting — stir-fries, stews, chili — a worthy if obligatory “healthful” substitute for white rice.

It need not be this way. There are dozens of brown-rice varieties, because “brown” simply means “hulled but not stripped of bran layers.” Brown basmati has the same nutty aroma as white, with more chew; most brown short-grains release starch, just like arborio; most brown long-grains cook just like “regular” rice; and black, mahogany, purple, red — all those novelty rices are “brown” and can be treated in pretty much the same ways, and those ways are myriad.

Read the rest of this column here.

Posted in Recipes

One Comment

  1. Babette Annapurna Ory said...

    Having been certified a Macrbiotic Chef/Insrtuctor in the70’sWent on to work in Natural Products industry in addition toFine dining.In my catering I discovered in the 8o’s red &blackriceHad been using Basmati brown since the seventies.My favorite rice is Jade ,with banboo infusion is so delicate.Made into a sweet. Almond milk,honey current. DishPefect for breakfast or a snack .Also baby brown basmati cooks in 15 -20 mins.add saffron,&fresh roasted indian spice ,including cinnimon & someOlive oil top with fresh lemon infused mint cucumbers

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