Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Thai food 101- Rice

Basic modern Thai food I have to start with our main dish that we serve every single meal is rice or “Khow”.  Most Thai folk (especially me) got to have rice every day.  Even our greeting sentence is “Kin Khow hrue yang?” meaning “have you eaten rice yet?”  That reflex our culture and how we think about rice. Rice has been in Thailand for a long time and we respect our rice.  I remember when I was a kid, if I dropped rice I would have to bow it and pick it up.  Also, never ever step on the rice it means that you do not respect rice (my mom said it will make you poor).  Now our new generation does not respect rice like the past, but for me I still believe in past traditions very strongly.
In Thailand we have two kinds of rice.
1.       Steam White rice “Khow-Soey” : most of the Thai folk eat white rice with every food and the most famous white rice is Jasmine rice.  This is the best rice in the world (in my opinion).  Jasmine rice has its own special smell and texture that makes all Thai foods better tasting.  Here is how to cook the steam rice the easiest way( no-rice cooker need).
Steam rice
                2 cup rice
                4 cup water
             Cooking instruction
1.       In medium pot add water and bring it to boil.
2.       Add rice stir one time, let it boil, stir one more time
3.       Reduce heat to low cover with lid about 30 minutes or until it has cooked. (all rice should have white clear color.)

2.       Sticky rice “Khow-Nhew” : This rice is sticky just like the name itself.  Most serve with north and northeastern Thailand food, also we use sticky rice to make dessert too.  Usually we cook sticky rice in “Houd”.  Houd is a tool to cooked sticky rice in northeast Thailand.  I never cook sticky rice in my home country, because it is easier to buy it already cooked.  So when I have a craving for sticky rice in America, I don’t know how to cook it.  Also my family doesn’t know it either (my family is from the east part of Thailand, we don’t know how to cook sticky rice it is so sad…) .  So I’ll come up with new ideas that work and I will tell you here!

Sticky rice
3 cup stick rice (sometime they call sweet rice)
6-8 cup of water
Cooking instruction : modern
1.       In medium microwave bowl pour rice and water let it sit at least 1-3 hr.(the more you sit the softer the rice gets)
2.        Rinse water out (reserve that water) until you have the same level of rice.
3.       Cover it with lid (if you don’t have a lid a plate should do)
4.       Microwave about 5 minute (time depend on rice if you use 1 cup of rice use 2 minute at the time).
5.       Take it out stir with fork cover it and microwave another 2-3 minutes (at this point if rice is too dry add 4 tbsp. of water that you reserved earlier)
6.        Follow instruction (5) about 1-2 time (if need) or until rice is cooked (rice grain should be a white clear color)

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