Never go on trips with anyone you don’t love….Ernest Hemingway "I am not a glutton -- I am an explorer of food." Erma Bombeck (1927-1996)

Monday, October 19, 2015

What Is Parboiled Rice?

Parboiled rice also called Ukda Chawal in Hindi & Converted Rice in English is rice which is Partially Boiled in the husk. There are three steps involved in the process which are soaking, steaming and drying. This process makes rice nutritious, changes its texture making it easier to process by hand.

The process itself is almost a couple thousand centuries old and is believed to have originated in Persia. It however, removes nutrients like thiamin from the bran to endosperm which means that parboiled white rice is nutritionally similar (80-85%) to brown rice. Presently, rice is parboiled in many countries like India, Malaysia, Nepal, Myanmar, Spain, Switzerland, Guinea, Italy, Thailand, Bangladesh etc.

The Basic Process
The process of parboiling begins before the hulling process.
Step 1 → The grain is soaked in water
Step 2 → The soaked grain is then steamed
Step 3 → The steamed rice is then dried for hulling
The steaming helps the rice to soak nutrients and change the starch composition making it firm and less sticky than regular white rice.

Some Benefits

Starch in the rice is gelatinized and stable making it harder and glassier.
The rice is rich in niacin, and has a high level of Vitamin B-6. This helps us metabolize our food into energy and helps in making hormones.
It take very less time to cook.
Easier to digest and much better in terms of nutritious quality when compared to raw rice.
It has long standing times as it stays fluffy post-cooking for a long time.
It absorbs more water proving a higher yield than ordinary rice.
It's rich in carbohydrates and has less fiber. The carbohydrates does not cause high blood sugar levels.
The rice has almost 2-3 percent of calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium and potassium if consumed on a daily basis.
It is great in terms of diarrhea treatment in children.

Uses in the Kitchen
There are several uses of parboiled rice in the kitchen. The food is tastier, healthier and rich when cooked in this rice.
Dish (with this rice) can be spicy as well as bland but you won't feel a difference with the taste.
The rice could be used to make dishes like Idli, Dosa, and Khichdi.
Parboiled Khichdi is very tasty if eaten with pickles, raitas and other sour products.
Washing the rice with both palms in a rotary motion is a better thing to do as it avoids grain breakage.
The rice is wonderful and tastes great with vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes.

How to Store
Parboiled rice has different properties and hence requires special attention. It should always be stored in air-tight containers and the storage time should not exceed more than 2 months as it could become rancid and smelly. The container should be placed in a cool and dry location. Cooked rice can be stocked up in the refrigerator for not more than 3-4 days.

Consumption of Parboiled rice is healthy and beneficial. However, it should be consumed in limited quantity as its properties differ from that of usual rice.

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Friday, October 16, 2015

Sumptuous Cuisine of Veneto

Veneto is situated in north-eastern Italy. Cuisine of Veneto has a long tradition of satisfying the taste buds of gourmet individuals. This cuisine is quite different from the other cuisines of Italy. This cuisine is quite varied as this region has varied landscapes. Gourmet picnic baskets containing cuisine of Veneto are popular throughout the world. Below mentioned are some of the most popular dishes of this region:

Brasato - This delicious dish is a must have for every gourmet individual. It's main constituents are braised beef meat, Amarone wine and polenta. This dish is ideal for a main course meal.

Gnocchi - These are thick dumplings made from wheat flour, egg, semolina, cheese, potato, breadcrumbs. This dish is served as snack throughout the world. This delicacy is also used as a substitute for soups. In some variations of this dish, melted butter along with sauces, pesto and sage etc.

Moeche - This mouth watering dish is an absolute delight for sea food lovers. It is made from Carcinus maenas, a unique species of crabs. The crab meat is fried and served along with sauces and potatoes.

Baicoli - It is a popular biscuit originating from Veneto. It is named as such as it resembles a Baicoli. These special biscuits are created by double baking and leavening. Savoring these biscuits along with coffee in the evening or early morning will make you feel happy.

Tiramisu - After a sumptuous main course meal, everyone desires a nice dessert. The main ingredients of this dessert are coffee, eggs, cheese, cocoa popular coffee-flavored Italian dessert. After a spicy non vegetarian meal, this dessert is ideal for your taste-buds.

Soppressa - This is a typical Italian salami served along with different varieties of sauces. This salami is made from different meat products like chicken, mutton etc. The best way to enjoy this dish is to have it along with a glass of beer.

Polenta e oxeli - Italy has an old tradition of game. Polenta e oxeli is a tribute to this tradition. This dish comprises of roasted birds like house sparrows, quails, larks, thrushes etc. It is served along with polenta.

Frittole - This is a very popular Italian dessert. It comprises of dough containing orange peel, raisins and lemon peel. In some of the variations custard and chocolate are also used. This dessert is prepared by frying and sprinkling in sugar.

You can enjoy the above mentioned Veneto dishes at any Italian restaurant throughout the world. Contact Us or Visit Us


Thursday, October 08, 2015

Six Mouthwatering Italian Dishes

For a gourmet individual, Italian cuisine is an absolute delight. Italian gourmet hampers are sold at restaurants throughout the world. The origins of Italian cuisine dates back to the fourth century BC. This delectable cuisine has been inspired from different ancient cuisines like Etruscan, Greek, Roman etc. It also evolved with the exploration of the new world as new ingredients like tomatoes, maize and potato were added to it. This cuisine is known for its wide range. This article discusses some of the most sumptuous Italian cuisines:

Cacciatore - It is mainly in three forms IE chicken cacciatore, rabbit cacciatorem and salamino cacciatore. Apart from braised rabbit or chicken meat, onions, tomatoes, bell peppers and wine are the chief ingredients of this dish. This dish is a must have for all those who crave for non-vegetarian food.

Baccalà alla lucana - This dish originated in the Basilicata province of Italy, but is now popular throughout the world. This dish is savored in most of the western nations during the Christmas period. The chief constituents of this dish are cod fish and crunchy red peppers. This dish is ideal for anyone looking for spicy sea food.

Cotechino Modena - Cotechino Modena is a famous Italian sausage made from pork meat. It is generally served with lentils, cannellini beans, mashed potatoes and sauce. It can act as an ideal snack before a main course meal.

Tortellini - They are also known as belly buttons. These are pasta shaped like a ring and are immersed with different varieties of meat and cheese. Originating in the Emilia region of Italy, this dish is now savored in different parts of the globe. As a variation, this dish can also be served with broth.

Lasagne - These are among the oldest types of pastas. These pastas have different layering containing sauce, mozzarella cheese and different varieties of meat and vegetable products. In order to make the dish delicious, other ingredients like wine, onion and oregano are added.

Minestrone - Before a main course meal, people generally look for sumptuous soups. Minestrone is a popular thick soup served in Italian restaurants. The main ingredients of this soup are vegetables like onions, carrots, beans, tomatoes, pasta and rice. Some restaurants serve this soup as a non-vegetarian recipe by including various meat products like chicken, pork in it.

You might be in any part of the world, but such is the popularity of Italian cuisine that you will find Italian restaurants everywhere. Contact Us