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Food news: Rice

According to new research from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, Americans who eat rice on a regular basis tend to have healthier diets overall. Rice consumers were also found to get more nutrients while eating less fat and added sugar, as well as eating more fruit and vegetables.
Their diets were more consistent with what is recommended in the U.S. Dietary Guidelines and they showed higher amounts of iron, fiber, potassium and magnesium.

White rice over a spoon-and on it! by getty images

Did You Know That…..

On average, Americans eat about 27 pounds of rice a year (and 70 percent of that is white rice).

Most of that rice was US-grown; according to the USA Rice Federation, American farmers grow an estimated 20 billion pounds of rice a year.

California is the no. 2 rice-growing state.

Virtually every piece of sushi made in the US contains California-grown rice.

Rice can be added to soups, stews, casseroles and salads to add not only flavor, but bulk (you’ll get full faster)!

Here’s an easy-to-prepare rice dish that will go well with roast beef or steak:

1 cup of regular rice
3 cups of water
1 package Lipton’s Onion Soup Mix
Optional: 1 stick of melted margarine or butter (if you’re not a butter or margarine eater, don’t worry. This will still taste delicious without it!)

Preheat the oven to 325 (degrees) F.
Combine all the ingredients.
Put the mixture in a covered casserole dish or pan.
Bake for one hour.

Here’s a recipe from Jolene Kunovich for chicken and rice:

4 chicken thighs
1 cup raw rice
2 teaspoons paprika
1 large onion, chopped
2 teaspoons Vegeta (available at specialty grocery stores),
Or 2 cubes chicken bouillon
2 cups water
Optional: Butter or margarine (if you’re not a butter or margarine eater, use cooking spray, canola or vegetable oil)

In a heavy pot, brown the chicken in butter, margarine, the cooking spray or canola oil; remove the chicken and set aside.
In the same pan, saute the onion until clear; then add the rice, paprika, Vegeta (or chicken bouillon cubes) and water.
Mix everything well and bring to a boil; return the chicken to the pot.
Cover and simmer until the water is gone.

Sources: The Vindicator, 1999 (!), “No surprise: Rice helps healthy diet” by Debbie Arrington-The Sacramento Bee, April 22, 2014 and “Our Good Cooks: Well-learned cooking lessons yield prize-winning recipes” by Sarah A. Cart, Vindicator Correspondent-The Vindicator, May 21, 2000 (!)

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