PERFECT KOREAN RICE
Easy Korean Rice Without A Rice Cooker 냄비밥 짓기 炊飯
Soft, fluffy, freshly cooked Korean Rice. This is comfort food at its best, healthy and delicious. Koreans eat short grain rice not long grain rice. It is much stickier, fluffier, more moist and tastes more savory sweet than long grain rice. Korean Short grain rice is the same as Japanese rice.
Watch My Easy Korean Rice Recipe Video (2m 21s)
The reason I decided to post my Korean rice recipe is that students from my cookery class asked about the recipe. British people usually don’t eat this kind of rice so I wasn’t sure they would like Korean rice. I use Korean rice as it is a Korean cookery class and, surprisingly, most of the students said to me, “Wow! This rice tastes amazing!”
When I came to the UK, I saw someone cooking rice. I was amazed that she drained cooked rice. I never knew people do such things. When I started working for an international company in Manchester, a woman from Iraq said to us “What we do to make rice is that we put a pinch of salt, a tiny bit of olive oil and water and boil it.” That is also amazing that people use salt and olive oil when cooking rice. Wow! I never knew there were so many different ways.
Koreans simply use rice and water. That’s it! We don’t use any other ingredients to make super delicious rice. There must be hundreds of different brands of rice in Korean supermarkets. Some of them cost a lot compared to others, but, people usually like to buy quality rice regardless of the cost.
When I was a child, I used to stay in my grandparents’ house for a week or so in summer. Both of my grandparents lived in the countryside near Daegu, the third biggest city where I am from. My dad’s parents lived in a country style house. In the garden, there was a big fire place which had a huge cauldron over it. Very early in the morning, the noisy roosters would wake us up singing cock-a-doodle-doo. It was quite annoying when you wanted to sleep more, but there was always a wonderful smell of cooking rice in the cauldron. That smell was amazing to wake up to.
My grandparents woke us up to eat breakfast. There wasn’t any sleeping in allowed. Country people are far more hardworking than city people I used to think. By the time my siblings and I got up and sat at the table, my granddad was already out working in his rice fields. My dad’s mum was not a good cook, but her rice was perfect, fluffy, moist and super delicious. Everything else was terrible (which she acknowledged) unlike my other grandma who would cook the most delicious food you have ever tasted.
Most Koreans today use a rice cooker to make rice. Korean rice cookers make perfect cooked rice with just a tiny bit of effort. You can set the timer, use different functions such as brown rice, five grain rice, soup, Galbijjim (braised pork or beef ribs), etc and also keep the rice warm after its cooked.
I read an article about Asian tourists who come to Korea. Most of them buy Korean rice cookers before they leave South Korea. People who eat rice as a main meal want to eat the best rice, don’t they? Korean rice cookers are the best in the world. They are pricy, but, I use mine everyday and the last one I used lasted 13 years. So, it is not a bad investment.
When you cook rice, ratios are important. Some people say the same amount of rice and water or 120% or 200% water. We were told 120% water to rice at a cooking class in middle school. After a lot of experimentation, I have found that 150% water to rice is a perfect ratio when you cook it in a pan. Also, thick bottomed pans cook better rice. If you like Nurungji (누룽지, scorched rice in the bottom of your pan), you can cook the rice a bit longer. The timings in my recipe are a guide as it depends on the strength of your stove. One very important time is the 10 minutes you have to leave the rice once you have turned off the heat. Don’t open the lid until the 10 minutes are up as the rice won’t cook properly if you do.
Making Korean rice in a pan is very nostalgic and reminds a lot of Koreans of their youth, camping, or student life. Enjoy your freshly cooked Korean rice with any of my Korean recipes. Bon appetit!
- 2 Cups of Korean Short Grain Rice
- 3 Cups of Water
- Pour the rice and water into a heavy bottomed pan.
- Cover and soak the rice with the water for 30 minutes.
- Keeping the rice covered, heat the pan over a high heat on your stove.
- After roughly 5 minutes, depending on the strength of your stove, if it is boiling, open the lid and stir the rice.
- Turn the heat down to low, cover the rice again and cook for another 15 minutes.
- Stir the rice gently to loosen it from the bottom of the pan.
- Turn off the heat, cover the rice and leave for 10 minutes. Don’t be tempted to have a look. It is very important that you leave it alone.
- After 10 minutes, your perfect delicious Korean Rice is ready.