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how to flavour rice with spice when boiled | Family Cuisine

Rice is a staple food that can be cooked in many different ways. It is often served with spices and herbs to add flavour. One way to do this is by boiling the rice with spices and herbs, then adding your favourite flavours afterwards

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How to flavour rice with spice when boiled

Seasoned Rice is a homemade version of the flavoured boxed rices like Rice-A-Roni and Uncle Ben’s! A quick way to add flavour to white rice to make it super tasty, this is a rice side that’s economical, simple to make, and goes with literally everything.

Make a big batch and refrigerate 4 days or freeze 3 months.

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Close up of seasoned rice with butter, ready to be served (copycat boxed rice)

Buttery Seasoned Rice

I tell my friends this is the rice version of Potato Salad – you make a big batch, stash it in the fridge and bring it out night after night to serve with everything.

Except unlike Potato Salad, this rice recipe can also be frozen. Whip it out of the freezer, pop it in the microwave for a couple of minutes. Anyone for a 2 minute instant side – that didn’t come from a box??!!

Flavoured butter rice on a plate, ready to be served

Rice Side Dish for everything!

Don’t get me wrong, plain rice has its place in this world. Doused with saucy stir fries, smothered in spicy curries. But you do need a sauce.

So how do you make plain white rice so tasty, you will want to eat a meals’ worth straight out of the pot?? Cook it with stock powder/bouillon, some spices and add a good wack of butter!

Flavourings and spices for seasoned rice

Here’s what goes in this seasoned rice. You can make this with any white rice other than speciality rices like risotto, paella and sushi rice. Also see the recipe notes for how to adjust this for brown rice.

Don’t worry if you don’t have all the spices, there are plenty of alternatives! See below the photo for a list.

Spices for rice to make it taste better

Substitution for spices

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You could skip one of the spices and it will still taste similar. Or you can substitute as follows:

  • Garlic powder – melt 1 tbsp (15g) butter and cook 2 finely chopped garlic cloves until golden, then add rice, water and all other ingredients and cook per recipe;

  • Onion powder – add extra 1/2 tsp garlic powder instead;

  • Paprika – just skip it, adds a touch of warm earthy flavour and a bit of colour, not critical;

  • Thyme – not critical. Best sub is dried oregano, followed by basil. 1/4 tsp sage powder is SO GOOD as well.

  • Parsley – optional, this is more for visual, to get the little green specks in the rice. Sub with basil, or stir through 1 cup finely sliced green onion, or 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley or chives.

How to make rice taste better!

Here’s how to make this flavoured rice which comes out beautifully fluffy – with the added bonus of no scorched pot base too!

How to make rice taste better

  1. Place rice, water and all the seasonings into a large saucepan or small pot and give it a good stir;

  2. Bring to a simmer over medium high heat until there’s bubbles around the edges and the entire surface is rippling, and it foams a bit (you’ll see in the video);

  3. Place a tight fitting lid on, then turn down to medium low – or low for strong stoves. You want the water to still be simmering – if the heat is too low, then the rice just sits there in hot water, bloating, rather than absorbing. Too high, and it will bubble over and out the sides of the pot. NO PEEKING – the lid needs to stay on to trap the steam inside – this will ensure your rice cooks evenly;

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    After 13 minutes, remove from the stove and let it rest for 10 minutes – the rice will finish cooking during this time (if you try the rice as soon as it comes off the stove, you’ll find the surface of the grain is wet and the inside is still uncooked);

  5. Add butter and fluff up the rice with a rubber spatula – the residual heat will melt the butter. I recommend using at least 3 tbsp (50g) for a lovely buttery rice, but you can reduce to 2 tbsp (30g) if you want. Or sub with extra virgin olive oil, or just skip the butter – it will still be very tasty rice!

  6. Pile onto serving platter, sprinkle with parsley or something green for presentation if you wish. Dig in!

Seasoned rice in a saucepan, ready to be served

What to serve with Seasoned Rice

This is a rice side dish that will pretty much go with any foods other than Asian food and curries (they’ve got enough flavour in them as it is!).

It’s tasty enough to eat plain without sauce, quick enough for midweek meals yet so good you’ll want it on the table of grander affairs too! Here’s a few suggestions for mains to serve with this:

It would also be terrific to make a meat-free meal out of things like these:

AND stuff them into BURRITOS!!

Now, kiss those boxed rices goodbye, and make a big batch of this rice and refrigerate for days, or freeze it! – Nagi x

Watch how to make it

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Dozer with 2 puppies

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