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Lilac Rice

Serves 2 to 3


    You often see a pinch of black rice added to white rice in Japanese home cooking, which gives it a soft lilac tint with a slightly smoky flavor and chewy texture. The more black rice you add, the more dramatic the effect. Cooking 100 percent black is a little intense in flavor for everyday use, I think (not to mention pricey), so I like to mix anything from a handful of black (for this lilac rice) to half-half (for deep purple rice), getting a lot of color out of one bag of black rice!


    This richly hued lilac rice can be made with brown short-grain rice too, as I’ve done here!


    Lilac Rice


    • Scant 1 1/4 cups brown short-grain rice
    • 2 Tbsp (3/4 oz) black Venus rice
    • 1 3/4 cups water, to cook



    Combine brown and black rice in medium pot. Pour plenty of boiling water (any amount) over rice directly in cooking pot, cover, and let soak for 20 minutes.


    Drain off soaking water, add measured water for cooking, replace lid, and bring to a boil.


    Simmer over low heat for 25 minutes. Remove from heat and, without removing lid, let rest for 10 minutes before using.


    Let cool before packing in bento (unless using in onigirazu) and/or storage container. Refrigerate for up to 4 days.


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    This recipe is part of the These Bento Box Recipes Will Take Your Workday Lunches From “Meh” to Marvelous collection.



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