Frustrated non cook!!!!!
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Ok I have to vent. I am trying to cook more but I swear things that take people 30 freaking mins to ccok takes me 5 hours! Like today I have been trying to cook rice for the past hour in a half! No joke, for over an hour I have been trying to cook rice! It's my first time even attempting to cook it and I have no clue what the hell I'm doing. It's just so fustrating because it makes me wanna just throw everything away and go get some taco bell or some Mcdonalds. I know practice makes perfect but its aggravating to put hours into something and then still not have it come out correctly.
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Kaliyah, kudos to you for struggling through cooking! If you've never done it a lot before, it really can be frustrating and time-consuming to start cooking all your meals. Even if you are used to cooking, switching your diet can be daunting and a huge time sink.
So, as far as rice goes, I have two practical suggestions that are different from what others have mentioned. First, until you perfect the art of cooking rice, why not buy frozen rice? There is the Uncle Ben's brand, but even better (if you have a natural grocers or even a Whole Foods near you), you can buy frozen, fully cooked brown and wild rice. It's not seasoned, but you can reheat it in the microwave or in a pan on the stove and season it any way you please. :) I get a brown rice and black bean frozen mix - very tasty and the rice and beans are tender. This is the brand I buy: http://www.stahlbush.com/our-produc
This makes a great lunch when I've forgotten or run out of time to make a healthy lunch. I'm suggesting this to help you be able to stay out of the restaurants but still get to eat these difficult-to-master foods. :)
My second tip is to invest in a good quality rice cooker. Even though I can cook rice on the stove top pretty well, in all honesty the rice cooker saves me so much time that I don't think I could live without it anymore. It has changed the way I eat, honestly. I use it for white rice, brown rice, wild rice, beans, etc... and my model has slow-cooker and steamer options that work really well, too. I literally use this little machine all the time, several times per week. It was probably f the best $35 I ever spent!
Here's the model I have: http://www.amazon.com/Aroma-Cooker-
I've been so happy having a rice cooker, that I bought ones for my dad and sister for Christmas. I don't know why I never bought one before.
You've gotten some really great tips for cooking rice on the stovetop already. If your desire is to master stovetop rice, I would like to second some of the great suggestions you've gotten already. One, you should wash your rice (this is true in a rice cooker, too). Two, it's always 2x the water to 1x the rice. Three, add the rice and water together, bring to a boil, cover, and reduce to a simmer. Then just leave the rice alone for ~20 min (white rice) or ~30 min (brown rice). Longer still for wild rice. To reduce the chances of boiling over from the starches (this is true when cooking beans, too!) add a little olive oil to the rice (can be only 1/2 tbsp). I realize it sounds simple, and I'm sure that makes your experience even more frustrating! But rice is one of those tricky foods that it can really take a long time to get the hang of cooking.
Hang in there!
1345 days ago
Comment edited on: 2/12/2013 10:18:50 PM
I cook my rice slightly different from this one.. I usually bring a pot of water to boil with salt added to it. Then I add my rice and stir once. When the rice is almost cooked, I drain out all the water (using a sieve sometimes). After draining out the water, either I cover the pot with a lid and let it on low flame for 5 minutes or I put it in a rice cooker and let it dry the excess water. I find this way easier and faster to cook. However I have heard controversial comments about throwing away the water.
1346 days ago
Rice can be frustrating because it's easy to "get it wrong." I've been cooking rice for forever and started using brown rice a few weeks ago and had some minor catastrophes.
I'm sure this won't help you this time, but here's my easy fool-proof method of cooking (white) rice:
1) Decide how much rice you want. (1 serving is typically 1/4 c. uncooked)
2) Measure out TWICE that amount of water. (so 2 servings = 1/2 c. Measure 1 c. water)
3) Put the water in an appropriately sized pot (I usually go small), put a lid on it, and turn the heat on high.
4) As soon as the water starts to boil, put in the rice, stir ONCE to make sure the rice doesn't stick to each other, knock the heat down to low. Recover & set the timer for 20 minutes.
5) After 20 minutes, turn off the heat, remove the pot from the burner. Keep it covered & let it "think about what it's done" for 5 more minutes.
6) Fluff & serve.
This comes out with rice that's nice and fluffy. Stirring it does weird things to the proteins & makes it all clumpy and gross. RESIST THE STIR!!
Good luck with your rice :)
1346 days ago
Comment edited on: 2/12/2013 2:25:56 PM
One thing that helps me save time is when chopping veggies, if I need 1/4 c. of onion I will chop the whole thing then put what I don't need in the freezer. Next time I just scoop out what I need and put back the rest. Another thing is to get some tiny bowls and get all your seasonings measured out ahead of time. Like they do on the cooking shows. So when you are ready for the seasonings, you just dump it in.
Not only does cooking take time, especially when you're new to it and you have to sit and watch it cook, but getting everything organized and two dishes done at the same time is very challenging.
Try watching a few cooking shows to see how they cook certain things, what something looks like when it's "done", different techniques, and tips. (Like when you need to boil water, set it on the stove and cover it with a lid to get it to boil faster)
Don't give up!
1346 days ago
Your not alone, I have a hard time cooking rice too
1346 days ago
LOL - well, you may not see yourself as a cook, but you're a wonderful comedian But SNP has it right, cooking does require practice...and patience. The only thing I wonder about the rice is did you leave it alone? Rice doesn't like to be bothered once it starts cooking, hard as it is, you have to put that lid on and trust the process!
Keep it up, cooking CAN be fun and so much better for you than the easier options!
1346 days ago
Cooking requires practice.. Do not despair.. I love cooking
Just start by cooking easy stuff.. Learn simple methods to cook.. There are several spark videos which will give you pretty good tips.. All the best
About the rice, how did you cook it? I mean what was your procedures?
1346 days ago
Comment edited on: 2/12/2013 12:05:45 PM
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