With wedding season upon us, we are seeing the runway of bridesmaids visiting the restaurant celebrating bachelorette weekends. Bachelorette celebrations range from lascivious gatherings with all the “accessories” to the more sedate bride-to-be-North Fork getaways with lunch or dinner. Last weekend we had a group of young bridesmaids who wanted to give their bride a culinary send-off. They spent Saturday at the vineyards and came in on Sunday for a cooking class and lunch.
One of the dishes the bride wanted to learn to make was rice so I included a recipe for perfect rice in a rice cooker. A rice cooker is a wonderful gift (wedding or otherwise) for anyone who enjoys cooking – experienced or not. It takes away the stress of watching the rice pot and the risk of burning it, overcooking or undercooking it. I use it often and also find I can make rice with very little oil or none at all.
Steamed Jasmine-Coconut rice
Makes up to eight cups of cooked rice (which serve 4 people in my household)
3 cups of organic Jasmine rice
1 tablespoon of Canola oil
6 cups of water or garden stock
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/4 cup of coconut milk (not sweetened coconut cream which is for desserts and Piña Coladas)
1 tablespoon of sugar or honey
Mix all ingredients in rice cooker and press the “on” button and go about the other items on your to-do list. The light will turn on in about 30 minutes signaling that the rice is ready.
This recipe makes a perfect sticky rice that is a great accompaniment to chicken skewers with peanut or sesame sauce, grilled, sashimi-style tuna or sautéed vegetables. It’s also delicious in a stir-fried rice the next day. Another tip is that children seem to love this rice — whether they like coconut or not.
I love the floral notes in Riesling with most Asian-influenced dishes and you can’t go wrong with the 2010 Semi-dry Riesling from Paumanok Vineyards which the Wall Street Journal named one of the nation’s top 12 “luxury dozen.”