How to cook Japanese rice

Japanese rice
Here’s how to cook a perfect bowl of Japanese rice! Don’t have a rice cooker? No problem! All you need is a heavy-bottomed pot and tightly fitting lid (or a pressure cooker), some Japonica rice, and some water.
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2-3 people
Ready In min (Prep  + Cook )
Japanese people are known for their love of rice. It’s so central to the traditional Japanese meal that its name also means “meal” in Japanese. But it wasn’t always so central…
Rice cultivation was introduced to Japan around 300 BC. It became a politically charged food, leading to the gap between high born families and the common folk, and was also used as a currency to pay taxes. However, rice didn’t become a staple food for the majority of the population until perhaps the Edo period. Its production then continued to flourish and rice came to gain its place in the heart of Japanese culture, even playing a major role in Japanese creation myths.
Nowadays, rice is now often replaced with bread and other western food at the dinner table. However, it is still the star of many Japanese home-cooked meals, and is still deeply linked to the Japanese identity.
Japonica rice . . . 250mL (1 metric cup)
Water . . . 275mL
Put the rice in a bowl and add enough water to cover it. Gently rake your fingers through the rice, allowing the grains to rub against each other and your fingers. Quickly discard the water, blocking the grains with your other hand to prevent them from being discarded too! Repeat this rinsing process 3-4 more times, or until the water runs almost clear.
Then set the rice aside in a colander or fine-mesh sieve for at least 15 minutes.
Finally, put the rice in the pot you’ll use to cook it, and add the appropriate amount of water. Leave it to soak for at least 30 minutes.

Step 1

If using a rice cooker, follow the instructions to cook your rice, and that’s all!
If using a heavy-bottomed pot or pressure cooker, put it on the stove, covered, and turn up the heat to medium-high. Bring the rice to a boil. Try not to lift the lid and lose any precious steam – instead, listen for a bubbling, and watch for some escaping steam to know when the rice has reached a boil.

Step 2

Turn the heat down to low and cook for 10 minutes. Resist temptation, and do not lift the lid. Remove from heat and leave to steam for another 10 minutes.

Step 3

When the time is up… you can take off the lid! Gently fluff up the rice with a rice paddle or wooden spatula and serve. Keep some aside for refills by simply covering the pot with a cloth and the cover. Preserve leftovers by dividing into portion-sizes while still hot, wrapping in cling wrap and keeping in the freezer (not the fridge!).