December 2011

Healthy Choice: Rice

Perhaps you don’t know but I’ve read that rice is a staple in more than half the world population’s diet. One of the reasons for this is that rice is a healthy, nearly fat-free source of complex carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals that is easily prepared.

Rice is very versatile and can be cooked in different ways.

Risotto and pilaf are two of the most popular international rice dishes. Commonly known as “the pasta of Northern Italy,” risotto is prepared with a plump, medium-length grain called arborio rice. Making risotto requires repeatedly stirring a little stock or wine into the rice until it is absorbed, resulting in a delicious, creamy dish that can be made low in fat.

Unlike risotto, Middle Eastern-inspired pilafs are cooked covered and undisturbed. They can be made simply as side dishes, or as elaborate main dishes when flavoured with lean meats, legumes, vegetables, and exotic seasonings. Traditionally made with long, slender grains of imported basmati rice, pilaf can also be made with other aromatic rice varieties.

Of cource, you can serve plain boiled rice as a garnish, or mix it with some stir fried vegetables. Or you could even stir fry the rice as well (make sure it has cooled down).