So ... I like rice. A lot. I like plain old white rice and Mexican-flavored rice and rice pudding and risotto and paella and fried rice. Yeah, I like rice a lot.
But ... most of my favorite rice dishes involved white rice. I know that brown rice is better for me, but I've never been that fond of it. I'll eat it, but I don't get all googly-eyed about it like I do over my favorite white rice recipes.
That all changed a while back when I figured out how to make brown rice that's actually ... well, I won't say it's exciting, because after all it's still just rice - but it's something that I look forward to eating.
It's so freakishly simple, too. It's not about how you cook the rice, because you cook it any way you normally cook rice, whether that's on the stove or in a rice cooker. Personally, I prefer my rice cooker because it's so easy.
Okay fine, you can go ahead and tell me your tried-and-true rice cooking method that's always 100 percent foolproof.
I had a foolproof method, too, until I moved to high altitude and rice became my nemesis. I decided it was a battle I wasn't willing to wage, so I bought a rice cooker. Problem solved.
So anyway, when I cook white rice, I often flavor it with Better than Bouillon's chicken base. But I wasn't that fond of it with brown rice for some reason. It just wasn't a good pairing.
Then I found the magic ingredient, again from Better than Bouillon. But this time, it's their mushroom stock. Oh heck yeah. The mushrooms enhance the earthiness of the rice while at the same time adding some richness and savoriness. It's the perfect pairing.
The rice doesn't taste particularly mushroom-y, but it definitely adds something extra. If you want mushroom-flavored rice, add more of the mushroom base - but don't get too carried away, since the Better than Bouillon also adds salt. In fact, when I use it, I often (usually) omit salt.
Sometimes I add butter or oil when I make brown rice like this. Sometimes I add a touch of saffron. Sometimes I add fresh mushrooms (crazy, right?) or I'll add frozen peas when the cooking time is done. I just stir them in and let the rice rest for a short while. They warm up, but stay bright green and they don't overcook.
To be honest, I probably won't be making brown rice without the mushroom base ... unless I run out of it. And that will probably be a white rice day.
Awfully Good Brown Rice
- 2 cups uncooked brown rice, rinsed
- 1 tablespoon Better than Bouillon mushroom base