The Basics: Brown Rice

A friend and mom of an adorable, curious one-year-old told me a few days ago that she would love to try my recipes, but they seem complicated and time-consuming.

A hearty YES, and I UNDERSTAND, to all the mothers, all the working women, anyone really who rolls out of bed and attempts to tackle the day with some sort of grace.  We need a lot more simplicity in our lives.

So pies and souffles may be for special occasions, but we all need some quick go-to meals, and those are what seems to especially get screwed up in the altitude.

Take rice, for instance.  At sea level, you throw a cup of water in with a cup of rice and a pinch of salt and set the timer.  Sigh.

But here, at the top of the world, it’s TWO cups of water per cup of rice, and with certain rices you may even have to fry them first.  What?

Brown rice is even more flabbergasting.  THREE cups of water per cup of rice in a normal pot.  And it takes about 40-50 minutes to cook!  I experimented for years with my strangely crunchy final product before realizing that you can’t add salt to brown rice in the altitude until it is completely cooked.  Why doesn’t it come with a warning label?


So in case you’ve experience any of my frustration and confusion, here’s my super-simple recipe instructions for brown rice.

  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • Salt (to add AFTER rice is cooked)
  • A pressure cooker (more on the necessity of that in the altitude later)

Cook rice and water in a pressure cooker for 9-10 minutes after the top starts rocking.  Let the pressure drop of its own accord.

Serve with your favorite stir-fry. IMG_4799


2 thoughts on “The Basics: Brown Rice

  1. great, thanks for these tips! how long would you cook brown rice at altitude without a pressure cooker? 40-45 minutes with the top on?

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