Wednesday, May 7, 2008

From Hippie to Hip - Brown Rice Becomes Fashionable Again

In the 1960's and 70's brown rice was a popular whole-grain staple with the hippie era counter-culture. In the 80's and 90's it virtually disappeared from menus in favor of the more flavor-neutral white rice. Today the former hippie culture food is making a comeback thanks in part to the increasing interest in more nutrient rich "good" carbs.

So what is brown rice exactly? It is basically minimally processed rice. The outer inedible hulls are removed from the grain but the bran and germ are left mostly or completely intact. (To get white rice the bran and germ are stripped off leaving only the starchy flesh of the grain.) Brown rice is not always truly brown. "Brown" is more of a processing term referring to the bran which is left on the grain.

Brown rice has a lot of advantages over its paler younger brother. It is packed with more nutrients (fiber, antioxidants, etc) than white rice and it is much more flavorful. Thanks to popular mainstream restaurants (like P.F. Chang) consumers are becoming reacquainted with the tasty nutty flavor of brown rice. And thanks to popular diets (such as the South Beach Diet) consumers are actively looking to add more whole grains into their meal routines. So as you are building your recipe library think about including some recipes that call for brown rice. This flavorful ingredient edition will make for a deliciously on-trend meal that cooks can feel good about serving to their families and friends

No comments: