Basmati Rice, the queen of rice - learn how to buy, store, and cook with it

'Basmati' means fragrant, and white basmati rice is fragrant, long grain rice produced in northern and central parts of India. It is the most popular rice out of India. It is widely used worldwide, particularly for its nutty aroma and the long grains that, when cooked, stay separate.


When looking to buy basmati rice, look for these indicators:

  • Made in India, and it can be packaged anywhere in the world
  • Long grain, and then it will be categorized by it's length - classic, extra-long, and supreme. Ideally, you would want to buy supreme.
  • I recommend Tilda, Royal India, Laxmi brands.
  • Buy in small quantity, approximately 2 lbs per person in your household.


Store basmati rice in an airtight container or a sealable bag. I prefer to keep my rice in the freezer; yes, you read it correctly. However, a cool dark kitchen cabinet works just as fine, but make sure that the container is air-tight. Consume it within a year of purchasing it (does anyone even follow this rule?). 


Generally speaking, there are two ways to prepare rice:

1) Absorption method - This is where rice is rinsed under cold running water to eliminate excess starch and impurities. Then, this rice is soaked in double the quantity of water, and after half an hour, it is cooked in the same water in which you soaked it.

2) Drain method (Pasta style) - This is where rice is added to boiling water, cooked, and drained. This method ensures long grains and is a good way to prepare rice for biryani rice dishes.

Try some of our rice recipes:

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