White Rice vs Brown Rice vs Basmati Rice vs Jasmine Rice
Rice is one of the oldest food forms. It has a rich history dating back to 5000BC and was mentioned in facts about China where annual rice ceremonies are held till date. Rice plant is also native to India and Thailand. It was from Asia that soldiers, traders and explorers took rice plant to the west. In some places, rice is the staple food whereas in places where it is not grown, rice is considered a delicacy. Rice is grown in many climates. It requires much water after plantation and then long sunny periods to grow well. In many countries, especially Asian, rice is held in high regard.
There are various verities of rice found in different parts of the world having different names but the best way to characterize a variety is through the length of grain. There are long grain rice, medium grain rice and short grain rice varieties. All grain varieties are characterized on the basis of the length of the grain. Mostly rice is white in color, but there are also brown varieties of rice.
One variety of rice that is most popular all over the world is basmati rice. This is an aromatic, long grain variety that is native to the foothills of the Himalayas and extremely popular produce of India and Pakistan. It derives its name from a word in Sanskrit meaning fragrance. The grains of Basmati rice are longer than most other varieties found in different parts of the world. After cooking, grains remain free flowing rather than being sticky, and this is one feature that makes it a favorite choice for serving as a main dish. Basmati rice is available in both white and brown varieties. Basmati rice, after cooking makes an ideal bed for all types of curries whether vegetarian or non vegetarian.
This is a long grain variety native to Thailand. It is very tasty, but is stickier than most other long grain varieties. It is also used as a cheaper substitute for the Basmati rice. It has a nutty flavor and a rich aroma and served with many Chinese and Thai dishes. Unlike Basmati, the aromatic scent of Jasmine rice tends to disappear if it is allowed to age for a long time. Like Basmati, jasmine is also grown in water logged paddy fields.
White rice or Brown rice
As told earlier, almost all varieties of rice are available as white rice and also brown rice. There has long been a debate about which is better among the two. Though people prefer to consume white rice, health experts say that Brown rice has more nutrients than White rice. Brown rice is not milled as much as White rice which helps it to retain its bran and germ. Brown rice is more fiber rich, nutritious and chewy. However, Brown rice does not fare as well as White rice in many dishes. Even if we talk about long grained Brown rice, it is not that fluffy or tender. As compared to White rice, Brown rice takes longer than White rice to cook and also has a shorter shelf life.
› Rice is the oldest food form on earth
› Rice is native to Asian countries, now grown in many other parts of the world.
› Basmati rice, native to India is the most popular rice variety, while jasmine rice is native to Thailand. Both are long grained, but basmati is considered superior.
› Jasmine is stickier than most other long grain varieties.
› Most rice varieties come in both white and brown colors, brown rice is more fiber rich, nutritious and chewy.