Since rice is one of the few ingredients you can find any place the world, there are thousands of incredible dishes and recipes you can make with only this fantastic ingredient, and among all those almost limitless delights there is one that anyone could fall in love with, coconut rice.
Coconut rice is a dish made of rice and coconut milk; it is a very famous dish throughout the Caribbean Sea and its history goes back to the time when Spanish colonizers first arrived in those lands, bringing with them centuries of flavors and culinary traditions.
Types of coconut rice
There are many ways of preparing coconut rice, it all is going to depend on what ingredients you add to the basic recipe and how you cook it, that’s also quite significant. All around the world you can find different ways to make coconut rice.
- If you go to countries from the Caribbean Sea such as Venezuela or Colombia, coconut rice is mostly used as a side dish for fried fish and they add fried plantain to give it a more tropical touch, this is very typical on the Caribbean coast.
- As in all Asian cuisine, gastronomy in Thailand is well-known for the use of much more spices than in other parts of the world, which is why you can find a very authentic recipe for coconut rice with different aromas and flavors.
- In India, you can also experience another version of coconut rice, unlike Thai coconut rice, India’s coconut rice is made with Basmati rice instead of Jasmine rice, which is a great deal since this simple change leads to new textures and flavors.
- In places from Africa such as Nigeria, the rice is boiled with a sort of coconut milk they get after grating the coconut pulp, this is also known as Titoté.
- In Latin America, mostly, there is another version of coconut rice as a dessert which is called coconut rice pudding.
How to cook coconut rice, the easy way
Sometimes trying a new recipe can be something complicated even if it is supposed to be an easy one. However, our coconut rice easy recipe is a foolproof one, you don’t need to be an expert-level cook to make it right. Plus, below you will find some useful tips for you to get the best out of your coconut rice.
For starters, you need to decide whether you’re making the sweet or the salty version of the coconut rice, for the latter, the next tips will be game-changing.
- Before cooking it, it is very important to rinse the rice in order to remove any excess starch. Do it until the water is clear enough.
- Soak the rice for about 15-20 minutes to allow it to absorb some of the water before cooking, as this recipe calls for less liquid than usual.
- Combine coconut milk and water. Because coconut milk is very thick, it is difficult for the rice to absorb when cooking, so add some water to ensure the rice cooks properly.
- The best method is to use less liquid than usual, as this will prevent the rice from becoming sticky or gooey. Remember that the ideal texture for this dish is fluffy.
Easy and quick coconut rice recipe
When making this recipe you’ll notice it is not too different from cooking regular rice, the trick is using coconut milk instead of water.
- 2 cups of pre-washed and strained rice (Basmati, Jasmine or any long-grain white rice will work).
- 1 unit of coconut.
- 4 1/2 tbsp brown sugar preferably or white sugar.
- 1 teaspoon salt.
- 1 tablespoon oil.
- Approximately 8 cups of water.
- Obtain coconut milk by blending coconut pieces with warm water. Then drain and squeeze.
- Blend the residue again with more warm water to obtain more milk. Again, proceed to drain and squeeze.
- Caramelize the brown sugar.
- Add the coconut milk and allow it to reduce to 90% or until the milk caramelizes.
- Pour in twice the volume of water of the rice.
- Bring it to a boil.
- Add salt and oil.
- Add the rice and cook until dry.
- Finish cooking over low heat.
- Once it is done, serve hot and enjoy!
If you want to fully enjoy this dish, you can serve it as a side dish with Thai food, curry chicken, or just fish, it works really well with any Asian food!