I grew up on Minute Rice, didn’t know any different. In grad school my ethnic-Taiwanese roommate introduced me to his rice cooker and real white rice. I had nothing but real fresh-cooked white rice after that, until a few years ago when I was introduced to brown rice. I wasn’t crazy about it at first, but now my wife and I have switched competely away from white rice; we only eat brown rice at home, and we choose brown rice at restaurants when it’s an option.
Are you cooking in a pan on the stove? If you have an automatic rice cooker, you don’t have to constantly tend it. You just plan ahead a bit: load up the cooker with rice and water, push “start,” and come back in 50 minutes. A rice cooker isn’t real cheap, but if you eat rice a lot, it’s a worthwhile investment. You can even set its timer so that if you only have half an hour for lunch, the rice will be hot and ready when you get home.
Ever had brown rice? Ask her to buy/try some. Maybe not a 15-pound bag to start with. You might like it, and it’s better for you.
I cook rice on the stove, but I don’t constantly tend it. I boil the water, pour in the rice, reduce heat and cover. I come back in 40 minutes or so and it’s done. Am I not doing something I should be doing that would improve stove-top results?
I tend to prefer white, but I like brown from time to time.
Foolproof way to do brown rice: Bring a whole mess of water to a boil (about 5-6 times the amount of rice you’re cooking). Dump in brown rice. Boil vigorously for 25 minutes, as if you’re making pasta. Strain. Dump back into the pot and cover. Wait 10 minutes. Fluff with fork. Perfect brown rice every time.
The auto cooker just saves a couple of steps (rice+water go in at same time, instead of having to come back and add rice after the water is boiling, plus the cooker dials the heat back to “warm” when it’s done cooking) and provides the option of a delayed start via timer.
Most nights when we have rice, we’ll start the cooker at around 6, and the rice is ready a little before 7. We don’t have to touch it until we decide we want to eat, which could be anywhere from “right away” to an hour later.
If you don’t do rice very often it’s not a big deal, but we tend to eat it 3-6 times per week.
As for specific rices, I tend to like the stickier/starchier varieties. My standard go-to rice is just the long grain La Preferida rice or Goya’s California Pearl rice. Also a big fan of jasmine rice (can’t remember the brand, I just buy the big 25 lb sack of it.)