Brown and Black Rice

by fattydumpling

I think that chickens make some of the funniest sounds alive. Bwaaaaaaak. They prolong it just like that. Bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaak-ak-ak-ak-ak.

Fresh eggs, anyone? Straight from the chicken coop?

I once watched a chicken lay an egg at my co-op and it looked painful. The bird is trying to push out something of her body that’s bigger than her own head. She was probably also quite stressed out by the kids wandering around doing farm chores such as changing her water and adding food to her feeder.

“The chicken’s in labour!” a kid yelled when he saw the bird working on her egg.

One day, I found these two eggs in the coop. The egg on the right of the photo is a regular extra large chicken egg. The one on the left is the monster chicken egg. “I was surprised I didn’t see any of the chickens limping”, my bossman said upon seeing the eggs. I was surprised too: it must have hurt her greatly.

I was happy to receive fresh eggs from the farm during my co-op work term—I mean, who doesn’t think that is crazy cool? I’m embarrassed to admit that I had half the expectation to see perfectly same-sized eggs like the ones I buy at the grocery store. Instead, I got nice eggs that were as individual as the chickens who laid them. Not that I could tell them apart, though.

So, one thing that I used to eat a lot as a kid was a simple egg and rice meal, with some splashes of Maggi sauce to add some tasty saltiness. So, I did the same for a meal in my co-op location, ‘cept that I made an omelette with some cheddar cheese, green bell peppers, and tomatoes. Another thing that was different in this meal from my young days was the brown and black rice mixture in the place of traditional white jasmine rice.

My parents introduced me to the brown and black rice mixture about a year ago and it has quickly become the staple rice in our rice-lovin’ household.

To get this mixture, we mix up a ton of brown rice with a wee bit of black rice. The mixture is not rocket science, really. It’s more like the arts and crafts style—add more black rice until it looks good—maybe look for a 4:1 or 5:1 brown rice to black rice ratio.

The rice tastes superb, let me tell you. It tastes nutty and earthy and good. It’s more chewy then regular white jasmine, and the black rice stains the brown rice into a funny purple colour. The water that the rice had been soaking is also stained purple. Jellyfish, my old housemate, suggested reusing that water that the rice had been soaking in to cook the rice in because you may be pouring the nutrients down the drain if you chuck it. Smart girl.

Funny story: My rice always came out stick-like and crunchy, but I never gave it a second thought. I didn’t realize until I came home from school a few months ago that my mom’s rice was fat and fluffy and generally more fun to eat.  It was because she cooked the rice in more water. The rice is so much nicer when it’s soft and fluffy. When it was crunchy…I got to exercise my jaw at least.

Brown and Black Rice (1 serving)

1/2 cup of the brown and black rice
1 cup of water

After rinsing the rice a few times, soak the rice in the water for at least 1 hour (overnight if possible).

Cook the rice in the rice cooker. Or alternatively, pour the rice and water mixture into a pot and cook on high heat over the stovetop until the mixture is boiling. Then, turn the heat down low so the rice can cook over simmering heat. Keep the rice under a watchful eye. The rice is finished when all of the water has been absorbed by the rice, about 20 minutes.