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Basmati rice: Things to know about this type of rice

Among many types of rice consumed worldwide, Basmati rice is nowadays one of the most prominent types. To make use of the health benefits of Basmati rice and get some delicious recipes to cook it, read the following information 

Basmati rice: An overview

Basmati rice is so popular that you can find it almost everywhere around the world. But do you really know the meaning behind its name and how to choose among many types of Basmati rice? Read the following information to get useful information about it. 

Definition of Basmati rice

Basmati rice, which means “full of fragrance” in Hindi, is cultivated in the foothills of the Himalayas in northern India and Pakistan. There are also some other varieties that are grown in the U.S. In India, it has been grown for centuries. Later traders introduced this fragrant rice to the Middle East. Since then, it has become popular in Middle Eastern and Persian dishes as well.

Basmati rice is long, slender, and aromatic. After being cooked, Basmati rice is dry, fluffy, and also has a nutty flavor, pleasant aroma.

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Definition of Basmati rice

Types of Basmati rice

There are two major types of Basmati rice produced by two leading countries in cultivating it: India and Pakistan. 

  •  India Basmati rice.

India is the major country exporting Basmati rice on the global market, making it the homeland for many Basmati rice exporters. The frequent  Basmati rice from India are: Basmati 370, the R.S. Pusa Basmati, and Basmati 385.  

The Indian Basmati rice is fragrant, flavourful, and considered to be the most delicious Basmati rice in the world.

Colour: Basmati rice has translucent, creamy white color. There is also brown Basmati rice but the most commonly used is white Basmati.

Grain: Basmati is a variety of long-grain rice. The grain is long (6.61 – 7.5 mm) or very long (more than 7.50 mm and 2 mm breadth).

Shape: Shape is another feature to identify basmati rice. This needs to be over 3.0 in order to qualify as basmati rice

Texture: Basmati rice is dry, firm, separate grains. After being cooked, Basmati rice is firm and tender without splitting, and it is non-sticky. 

Elongation: The Basmati rice elongates almost twice upon cooking but does not fatten much. When cooked the Basmati grains elongate (70-120 % over the pre-cooked grain) more than other varieties.

Flavor: Basmati rice has a distinctive fragrance. The most special characteristic of them all is the aroma. Incidentally, the aroma in Basmati arises from a cocktail of 100 compounds — hydrocarbons, alcohols, aldehydes, and esters. A particular molecule of note is 2-acetyl-1-pyrroline.

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Types of Basmati rice

  • Pakistan Basmati rice

Besides India, Pakistan is also well-known for producing Basmati rice. D-98, PK 385, and Super Kernel Basmati Rice are three types of Basmati rice that Pakistan supplies on the market. 

Having many shared features but the Basmati rice from Pakistan is considered to be more aromatic, flavourful, and has higher quality so usually, it is sold at a higher price than India Basmati rice. 

Basmati rice: Nutritional facts

Basmati rice is a great source of nutrients. One cup (163 grams) of cooked white basmati rice contains

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Basmati rice: Nutritional facts

With this amount of nutrition, Basmati rice is regarded to be the top nutritious rice in the world.

Basmati rice vs Jasmine rice

Basmati rice and Jasmine rice are the two most popular rice consumed in the world. However, each type of rice has distinctive characteristics.

In comparison with Jasmine rice, Basmati rice is cultivated in the Himalayas, India, and Pakistan while Jasmine is produced mainly in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.  In addition, after being cooked, basmati keep their slender shape and almost double in length. Whereas in contrast, Jasmine rice forms small sticky clusters where the grains have clumped together slightly. Moreover, Basmati rice has a more fragrant aroma and a nuttier taste.

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Basmati rice vs Jasmine rice

Basmati rice: Health benefits

Not only delicious, but Basmati rice also has many health benefits that people can get when eating it.

  • Good for diabetics

Many people believe that people with diabetes should get rid of rice in their daily meals because normal rice contains a great amount of glycemic index (GI), which can cause a sudden spike and dip in blood sugar levels. However, basmati rice has a low level of (GI), from 50 to 58. Thus, diabetics can eat Basmati rice in small portions.

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Good for diabetics

  • Good for the brains

Basmati rice has a great amount of Vitamin B, including thiamine (B12).  Eating just one serving of Basmati rice can help you absorb around 22% of your daily diet recommendation of this vitamin. Thiamine is vital for brain health. Lacking Thiamine can cause Wernicke encephalopathy, a dangerous condition for the central and peripheral nervous system. 

basmati-rice

Good for the brains

  • Rich in fiber

Basmati rice contains a high level of fiber. A diet that is rich in fiber can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and strengthen bowel movements. The amount of fiber in Basmati rice can add bulk and assist the movement of waste in the digestive tract.

Basmati-rice

Rich in fiber 

  • Reducing the threat of cancer

Basmati rice, as mentioned above, contains a lot of fiber, which is also linked to reducing the risk of many types of cancer, especially colorectal cancer. With 3 ounces of Basmati rice in your daily diet, you can reduce the risk of having cancer by around 17%. 

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Reducing the threat of cancer

  • Reducing the threat of heart disease

Brown basmati rice is included in the category of whole grains, which are considered to lower the risk of heart disease and have a low level of cholesterol. It can also mitigate the threat of high blood pressure or hypertension. 

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Reducing the threat of heart disease

How to cook Basmati rice

It’s really easy to cook Basmati rice. Here is a simple guide to cooking appetizing Basmati rice.

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How to cook Basmati rice

Step 1: Add 1 cup of Basmati rice to a bowl and cover it with water. Soak the rice in 20 minutes.

Step 2: Drain the water in the bowl and rinse Basmati rice with cold water. Add 2 cups of water to one cup of dry basmati rice to the pan.

Step 3: Boil and simmer the Basmati rice for 10-12 minutes. Open the lid and leave it boiling for 5 minutes later.

Step 4: Gently fork through the cooked grains and then serve them.

Some dishes to eat with Basmati rice

Basmati rice is an indispensable part of many cuisines from India and Pakistan. Here are some delicious dishes to eat with Basmati rice.

  • Basmati rice With Chicken

You can pair the cooked Basmati rice with spicy chicken gravy and serve with vegetables on the side. You can also grill or stir fry or chicken when the Basmati rice is cooked and pair the two for an appetizing meal.

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Basmati rice With Chicken

  • Basmati Rice With Turmeric and Coconut

The recipe to cook this dish is really simple. 

Heat oil in a pan and fry chopped onions, garlic, and ginger, with salt for a few minutes. Add in the pan turmeric powder and Basmati rice, mix them well. Add coconut milk and water to the pan and let the Basmati rice cook for about 18 minutes. Finally, you have a scrumptious dish to eat.

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Basmati Rice With Turmeric and Coconut

  • Lemon Basmati rice

Lemon Basmati Rice is a delicious Basmati rice recipe that will definitely explode with flavor in your mouth. Here is how this Basmati rice dish is cooked. First, fry chana dal and urad dal in oil for some minutes. Add in salt, turmeric powder, Basmati rice, and water. Mix them well and add in the lemon juice. Fry until the Basmati rice is fragrant and take this off the stove

You can also add roasted peanuts to create more texture to the dish!

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Lemon Basmati rice

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