RICE AND RICE MIXES
Long Grain Rice
Long Grain and Wild Rice
Mexican Fiesta Rice
RICE AS A GLOBAL STAPLE FOOD
Rice, wheat, and maize are the three leading food crops in the world; together they directly supply more than 50% of all calories consumed by the entire human population. Wheat is the leader in area harvested each year with 214 million ha, followed by rice with 154 million ha and maize with 140 million ha. Human consumption accounts for 85% of the total production of rice, compared with 72% for wheat and 19% for maize.
Rice provides 21% of global human per capita energy and 15% of per capita protein. Although rice protein ranks high in nutritional quality among cereals, protein content is modest. Rice also provides minerals, vitamins, and fiber, although all constituents except carbohydrates are reduced by milling.
COOKING WITH RICE
The varieties of rice are typically classified as long-, medium-, and short-grained.
The grains of long-grain rice (high in amylose) tend to remain intact after cooking; medium-grain rice (high in amylopectin) becomes more sticky. Medium-grain rice is used for sweet dishes, risotto in Italy, and many rice dishes, such as Arròs Negre, in Spain.
Some varieties of long-grain rice that are high in amylopectin, known as Thai Sticky rice, are usually steamed.
Stickier short-grain rice is used for sushi; the stickiness allows rice to hold its shape when cooked. Short-grain rice is used extensively in Japan, including to accompany savory dishes. Short-grain rice is often used for rice pudding.