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  1. Preparation : This is gonna seem so simple that you won't believe that it will work, but it does. The thing with rice cooking is that folks tend to make it too hard. Get out a nice heavy pan with a tight fitting lid. (Visions is nice for this cause you can see what's going on in the pot.) Get a bag of normal ol' long grain rice--not Rice-A-Roni or Uncle Ben's or any of that "converted" stuff. Dump as much into the pot as you like (one cup dry makes about three cups cooked). At this point, you can either rinse it or not. If you don't the rice will be a tad stickier when done. (That makes it good for eating with chopsticks.) If you rinse it well it will be a tad "fluffier". Personally, over the years I've come to NOT rinse my rice. It's just too much work and I can't really see that much difference in the finished product. Level the rice in the pot and place your index finger so that it just touches the surface of the rice. Add water until the level comes just up to the crease at the backside of the top of the first knuckle on your index finger. Crank the heat up on the stove quite high and put the pot of rice on the burner. Stir the rice lightly before it comes to a boil, just once, so it doesn't stick. Let the shebang come to a full, rolling boil, then lower the heat to about medium. Let it boil, UNDISTURBED, until the free water evaporates and little holes appear in the surface of the rice. When this stage is reached, immediately lower the heat to the lowest setting possible (one of those "flame tamers" that you set on the burner can be helpful here), cover the rice and let it simmer and steam for about twenty minutes. DO NOT LIFT THE LID UNTIL THE TIME HAS ELAPSED-DO NOT STIR THE RICE!!! Sorry--didn't mean to shout. ;-} When the time has passed you will have a pot of perfectly cooked rice. Fluff it a bit when you put it in the serving dish. No complex procedures, no measurements and very little fuss and muss... This is an old Chinese method of cooking rice and it works regardless of the amount of rice used. Just remember the "first knuckle rule" and things should work well. I don't add salt to mine, but I don't imagine that it would cause any problems. I've never cooked brown rice this way, but I imagine it would work if you doubled the steaming time. Another easy way to get perfect rice is to buy one of those Japanese rice cookers. They run around forty bucks and are really quite good at what they do. I'm using one made by Hitachi that wo


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