I rinse my rice/grains before cooking for two reasons: 1. to wash the dirt off 2. to prevent boil-overs, excessive foaming, and "gummy-ness" during the cooking process. What you're rinsing away is mainly starch. Put the rice in a large bowl and fill with cold water. Agitate and rub grains with fingers, empty out as much cloudy water as possible, repeat until water is almost clear (3-4 times.) However, if you're making rice pudding, leaving starch on the rice grains is beneficial: it help with creaminess. I never rinse pasta. Just use a huge pot and plenty of water, so that it doesn't stick together. As far as calories go, it's not a precise science, anyway. The impact of rinsing the starch off would be marginal.
Edited by: JIRENEM at: 3/26/2010 (10:35)