Black rice is an ancient Chinese ingredient, which is attracting a lot of attention thanks to its dramatic colour, delicious taste, and remarkable health benefits. The new ‘superfood’ is high in fibre, with recent research showing one spoonful of black rice to contain more anthocyanin antioxidants than the equivalent amount of blueberries.
Black rice is also known as ‘forbidden rice’. In ancient China, only the Emperors were allowed the delicacy, with the peasant population being quite literally ‘forbidden’ from eating black rice. It was also believed to have an aphrodisiac effect!
This variety of black, long-grain rice is grown in China. Once cooked, it turns a a rich purple colour, and develops a delicious stickiness, with a nutty-sweet taste. Once cooked, the black rice can be cooled to room temperature and used in sushi – or studded with roast vegetables and dried fruit for a dramatic salad. The black rice is also great for black risottos or even a twist on the classic rice pudding.
Cooking suggestions: Black rice porridge
Take 20% black rice and 80% white rice or sticky rice, rinse well and simmer in warm water to make porridge. For added flavour use some brown sugar before serving and add peanuts, walnuts, or red jujube dates.
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