How To Cook Basmati Rice

Cooking perfect basmati rice is easy with these simple tips. Follow these guidelines and you’ll have fluffy, aromatic rice in no time!

Cooking Basmati Rice on the stove can be a tricky process, but this simple method will help you get a fluffy flavorful rice everytime. The first most important step is to purchase the best rice you can afford.

The Basmati rice that you find in bulk cloth bags at either Sam’s Club, Costco, or other bulk buying clubs is the best quality to make perfect rice. Next assemble your cooking utensils and ingredients.

You will need:

A 2 quart or larger stainless steel pot with a tight fitting lid.
A tea towel
Large bowl
1-Cup measuring cup
Olive oil

The first step is to measure out the amount of rice you want to cook into a bowl. Rice doubles and plumps up as it cooks, so one cup of uncooked rice will yield approximately 2 cups of cooked rice. Normally for a family of 5 I use three cups of uncooked rice per meal.

Place your rice in a bowl and place it carefully under the tap. Turn on the water and let the bowl fill to almost the top. Swirl the rice around in the water to rinse it, being careful not to lose any grains down the drain. Pour off the cloudy water through a sieve or strainer, so you don’t lose any rice. Add more water over your rice and repeat this process approximately ten times or until your water is mostly clear. This washes off dirt, silt, and gets rid of a large quantity of starch that would otherwise make your rice a sticky mess.

Once your rice is rinsed, place it in the stainless steel pan and put in enough water so it is one inch over the top of the rice. Turn the heat on medium high and bring it to a rapid boil, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to keep the rice from sticking or burning. Cook the rice exactly 6 minutes, then pour into a colander to drain.

Turn the heat down extremely low, probably a 2 setting on an electric burner and the flame should barely touch the burner on a gas stove.
Place about one inch of water in the bottom of your pan, then place 2 to 3 tablespoons of Olive Oil in the water.
Carefully spoon rice back into the pan in the center and make a large mound in the middle, careful to not touch the sides of the pan.
Sprinkle the top of your rice with about 1/4 cup of water and drizzle a little olive oil on top.
Cover the pot with a tea towel, and place on the lid to hold it the towel securely on, making sure the edges are well away from the burner.
Let the rice steam for approximately 50 minutes. Check the pot every 15 minutes and add more water if the pot seems to be steaming dry. Near the end of the cooking process you will want the pot to steam almost dry.
After 50 minutes, carefully remove the tea towel and taste the rice for doneness. If it is still a bit chewy, let it steam another 15 to 20 minutes.

When it is done, carefully spoon half the rice into a large bowl. Pour about 1/4 cup of melted butter over the rice and salt lightly. Mix this well, then add the rest of the rice from the pot to the bowl. Add more butter to the top of the rice , salt lightly and drizzle with some olive oil to taste.

Once you remove all the fluffy rice and season it, you will have a lovely surprise at the bottom of your pan.

If your rice cooked correctly, in the bottom of your stainless steel pan you will see a lovely brown crust of baked rice. This is called Tadeek. Salt this lightly and break it up to serve with your rice.