Ingredient of the week: black rice

This week for my new ingredient I thought I would try some black rice. I had read an article from Runners World on the great properties of black rice for recovery and figured with the increase in training load in our build for NZ Ironman anything that helped recovery was a bonus! I looked for the rice in my local Woolworths and health food store but had no luck. In the end an Asian grocery store had the goods.

Black rice is a kind of sticky rice which is one of several black colored heirloom plants. Black rice is high in nutritional value and contains 18 amino acids, iron, zinc, copper, carotene, anthocyanin and several important vitamins. The grain has a similar amount of fiber to brown rice and has a mild, nutty taste.

I decided to mix my black rice with jasmine rice – I was hoping for a lovely speckled look… unfortunately I cooked them in the same pot and as soon as I put the black rice in an date water started changing colour I realized that speckles were not to be. Instead I got purple rice! An interesting look but the taste was still great.

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I cooked a lamb korma to accompany my rice (or the rice to accompany the lamb). The recipe was from Anne’s Food but I didn’t have any cooked lamb so I browned the lamb and set it aside before cooking the onions. I also substantially reduced the ‘heat’ but still found the dish on to too spicy side. It was a big hit with L though!

The ingredients I changed were:

  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper – switched for 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 2 green chillis – I used 1 green chilli

Another highlight was the opportunity to use some of my own corianders seeds collected after my plants went to flower in the summer heat! The fresh spices smelt so good when I ground them. I don’t think there is any going back – from now on I am going to try and grind them fresh every time rather than surcumbing to laziness and purchasing them pre-ground.

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