No, it’s not #WhiteRiceWednesday quite yet. But there will be a lot of rice in my life for the next few months.
When my sister was home for her birthday last month, we made a pre-Easter brunch and enjoyed the company of a few friends and family. We borrowed many of the recipes from the Voltaggio brothers’ Backyard Easter Garden Brunch, including a delicious jasmine rice pilaf with peas, mint, and lemon. It was light, fluffy, and refreshing–the perfect spring dish! So when we saw that Costco carried jasmine rice straight from Thailand, we had to bring it home.
Oh, did I mention that it was a twenty-five-pound bag of rice?! It was. We briefly considered that twenty-five pounds of rice may be too much, but decided we were up for the challenge anyway. The bag of rice sat at our kitchen table, occupying one of the chairs as if it were a member of the family, for nearly a week. I finally cracked into it last night because I was dying to try a new recipe. (Keep reading to find out what it is!) While my rice was cooking away, I had to put the rest of the nearly twenty-five pounds of rice into storage containers. I’m sure you’ve all been kept up night after night trying to imagine just how much twenty-five pounds of rice is, and I wouldn’t want you to suffer one more restless night. You can stop worrying now, because I measured it all.
Okay, I’ll ease your curiosity now. Twenty-five pounds of dry jasmine rice equals (roughly) forty-seven cups. That’s 141 cups of cooked rice. If I were to eat every last grain of that rice by myself, at the rate of one cooked cup per day, it would take me nearly five months to do so.
I’m not really going to eat a cup of rice per day for more than twenty weeks though, and I won’t be eating it alone. (If you’re craving rice, come see me. I’ll hook you up.) So what will we do with our twenty-five pounds of jasmine rice?
Pretend I’m on Survivor.
I grew up watching many of the early seasons of Survivor and always wondered what it would be like to be purposefully stranded on a deserted island with a bunch of strangers, competing for $1,000,000. I’ve found myself hooked on the past few seasons and still find myself wondering what that would be like. What kind of castaway would I be? How would I fare in challenges? Would I be able to form a strong alliance? Aside from the lack of reward and immunity challenges, most of the dirt and bugs, tribal councils, and sleeping in a makeshift shelter, all this rice I have now will make me feel like I’m right there with the Survivor Dirty 30 and all the other greats.
There will also be lots and lots of new recipes. Rice puddings, stir fries, soups, casseroles, rice balls, salads, pilafs, and maybe even some sushi. My first rice recipe was my first go at coconut rice, because we all know how much I love coconut.
Coconut Veggie Rice
Prep time: 5 minutes | Cook time: 20 minutes | Yield: 8 servings
2 1/2 cups jasmine rice
1 2/3 cups coconut milk (same as one 400mL can)
2 1/3 cups water
2 cups frozen vegetables (peas, carrots, corn, string beans)
salt and coconut oil/butter to taste
In a medium to large saucepan, add rice, coconut milk, water, and salt. Cover with lid, place the pot over high heat, and bring to a boil. Stir, if desired, and turn heat to low. Keep covered and simmer for 20 minutes or until rice has absorbed the liquid. Turn heat off and let sit for 5 minutes. Defrost vegetables, add to rice, and mix well. Add salt and coconut oil (or butter) to taste. Fluff with fork and serve.
The rice was incredibly creamy, with just a hint of coconut. I paired it with crunchy egg rolls and spicy dipping sauces, and it made the perfect balance. But it’s mild enough that it can be paired with almost anything. (I plan to try another version of this rice soon, using coconut water instead of coconut milk, because I’d prefer a bit more of the coconut flavor.) Happy cooking!