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Food preparation, AIBU?

(129 Posts)
LDNmummy Mon 11-Jul-11 16:50:28

Ok so following on from my kind of controversial dining table thread grin ...

Some thing I just thought of and wondered what other people's opinions are including:

Do you wash rice before cooking? I was taught to wash rice at least twice before cooking to get rid of dirt and dust etc. but I have met a few people who don't and just cook it straight from the packet. I even asked them about it and they said that washing was only to get rid of starch as far as they knew and not necessary. I don't judge, each to their own and all that, but I wouldn't eat their food as it is unhygienic IMO. Obviously pre washed rice (if that exists) is a different issue.

Another thing I have noticed is when people cut and prepare onions but leave that ligh brown coloured layer of chewy onion skin behind and add to to the food. It is the layer that looks almost like the white and edible part of the onion, but it has a slight tinge of brown and is chewy and papery like the skin of the onion. Surely you should not add that bit to the onion you cook? Again I don't judge and would eat food with it in as I don't think this is at all the same as not washing rice, just that I end up having to pull it out of my mouth mid chew as it is too papery and chewy to break down and swallow IYSWIM.

I know this is random, I was just sitting here and thought of it after washing some rice and thought I would ask. In all fairness I am a very fussy cook and wash between handling everything so maybe I am being OTT. But the rice thing especially I do find a bit yuck.

Plus I wanted to start a thread not about politics or benefits or NoTW as it is starting to fry my brain.

LDNmummy Mon 11-Jul-11 16:51:52

Excuse spelling and grammar!

BabyDubsEverywhere Mon 11-Jul-11 16:54:01

I wash the starch off rice before i cook it, so it doesnt end up all gloopy at the end. Never heard the dust thing, that sounds like bollox tbh.

You do sound a little unhinged. I am too, you're in good company grin

Firawla Mon 11-Jul-11 16:54:03

yes i wash rice and take that bit of the onion off, i consider it like part of the skin so normal to take it off? yanbu

minipie Mon 11-Jul-11 16:54:15

I boil rice in water. The boiling water then gets poured away. Then the rice is rinsed.

That does a perfectly good job of washing IMO. Not sure what extra dirt and dust would be removed by washing the rice first.

The onion thing, I'm with you. I peel right back to the translucent juicy layers. But then, I don't much like onion.

Pandemoniaa Mon 11-Jul-11 16:54:36

I wash rice thoroughly (at least twice) to get the starch out of it. I then boil it (like you do to cook it) and have always assumed that the boiling process would kill any lurking bacteria - not that I assume everything I eat is toxic. It's cooked rice that you have to be really carefully about anyway.

As for onions, the chewy skinny bit simply doesn't taste very nice so for that reason, my onions are always thoroughly naked after I've had my hands on them.

pointydog Mon 11-Jul-11 17:02:14

So to summarise, you are asking

do you wash rice
do you eat bits of onion skin?

No, I don't wash rice and I don't see how it can be unhygienic as I boil the damn stuff for 12 minutes.
No, I don't eat onion skin and I don't know anyone who does.

LDNmummy Mon 11-Jul-11 17:02:43

I think the washing the rice thing is to get rid of pesticides and herbicides as much as dust and dirt.

Glad I am not alone Babydubs grin

Ah minipie you highlight a good point, my cooking process doesn't include rinsing after cooking. Obviously that may make a big difference.

Scholes34 Mon 11-Jul-11 17:16:14

Best way to cook rice (whatever variety) is to boil it for 7 minutes then steam it for 7 minutes (washed or unwashed).

Whatever was on the rice before it was cooked will surely be zapped after it's been boiled.

AMumInScotland Mon 11-Jul-11 17:16:58

"I don't judge... but I wouldn't eat their food as it is unhygienic IMO" - hmm - I don't think you can put those two things in the same sentence TBH. You quite clearly are judging them.

I do not believe that bought packets of rice require to be washed before cooking - certainly no rice I have ever bought has had that on the packet instructions. If you buy it in handfuls out of a sack in some trendy health-food shop then I see your point, otherwise I think you're being rather strange.

valiumredhead Mon 11-Jul-11 17:20:59

Yes to the onion thing - no to the rice thing, I measure the rice then pour boiling water on and LEAVE it simmering and it comes out perfectly every time and never gloopy.

If there were pesticides etc on the rice I imagine you'd need to do a lot more than a quick rinse with water to remove them grin

HowToLookGoodGlaikit Mon 11-Jul-11 17:23:52

I dont wash rice ever, I steam it & it never turns out gloopy. I do remove the horrid onion layer, only because it is almost inedible and I wouldnt want to ruin the meal.

LDNmummy Mon 11-Jul-11 17:26:28

AMum I knew I should have been clearer on that. What I mean is that I don't think they are unhygienic for eating rice this way, more that it is my issue as I am the one who finds it unhygienic. I don't judge them, but hold my own issue with it.

BaronessBomburst Mon 11-Jul-11 17:27:31

Any decent brand of pre-packed supermarket rice is already washed. Any further washing/ soaking is to get rid of the starch. Buy a cheap economy brand and you'll notice the different right away! It'll be dusty with bits of chaff in and will need washing. So, it all depends on what rice you're using.....

And who on earth eats onion skins? If it's got brown on, it's classed as skin.

eurochick Mon 11-Jul-11 17:30:44

Washing the rice is to get rid of starch, it has nothing to do with hygiene. You are about to boil the shyte out of it for at least 20 mins, which will take care of cleaning it. Personally I never bother rinsing the starch out.

I don't eat onion skin and I don't know anyone who does.

Blu Mon 11-Jul-11 17:31:46

It is not' unhygenic' to not wash rice.

If there are pesticides etc, then they will have been on the outer husk, which is removed in white rice.
Good quality rice is free of stones, dut, grit etc - do you wash dried pasta before you cook it?
As others have said, boiling will kill any bacteria present.

The outer skin of onion is horrible, so I always peel it properly.

Insomnia11 Mon 11-Jul-11 17:35:58

No, I don't wash rice before I stick the packet in the microwave. smile

If it's packet rice I rinse it through with boiling water from the kettle as I drain it.

I wash the onion under the tap after chopping in half and removing the skin as washing off the acid on the outer layer stops it stinging my eyes so much.

I generally just read and obey the packet instructions re rice/noodles/pulses.

AngryGnome Mon 11-Jul-11 17:37:56

I rinse rice in cold water before cooking it, and don't eat the onion skin. To introduce a new topic, does anyone else peel mushrooms before cooking them? I always do this, but no-one else I know does, and in fact most people I know think I am bonkers for peeling them.

They may be right.

LDNmummy Mon 11-Jul-11 17:46:31

Angry I always wash mushrooms very thoroughly as I would hate the idea of mud getting into my food and then accidentally biting into it and getting that gritty feeling.

My DH wanted to try cooking them with the mud on once as apparently some people do this as it keeps more flavour (I think). I couldn't bring myself to do it.

I don't peel the mushrooms, but I do cut off any little bits I think look a bit suspect.

smudgethepuppydog Mon 11-Jul-11 17:53:39

I use easy cook rice. Part of the process for manufacturing 'easy cook' rice involves par boiling or steaming it so it's already been treated at high temperature once. I then boild it to within an inch of it's life for a further 15 minutes so I'm not sure what nasties could still be lingering after all of those processes.

I don't understand what bit of the onion it is your talking about.I remove the brown papery skin then chop and cook.

I don't bother peeling mushrooms, I just wipe them over and cook.

I used to be hung up on food hygiene but some CBT has almost kicked my emetophobia into touch so i am far more chilled about it all now.

AngryGnome Mon 11-Jul-11 17:55:32

Me too LDNMummy! I imagine all kinds of mud and grub hiding in the mushroom cup, so I always peel them.

I used to live with a girl who used to sterilise all her salad in Milton. She was Spanish and told me that everyone sterilised their salad in Spain. I have no idea if this is true, or if she was just bonkers - but as I have been known to peel even button mushrooms I am in no position to judge....

MsTeak Mon 11-Jul-11 17:58:45

how would washing rice get rid of pesticides and stuff? Esp white rice, which is polished and has half of it removed already.

Oblomov Mon 11-Jul-11 18:01:23

I don't rinse rice. I have done, in the past, when I was in Egypt. But their rice was more natural, not the stuff we get here, from sainsbury's !!
No, I peel onions properly. No brown. I don't know anyone who would eat the skin.
You are not supposed to wash or peel mushrooms. A large part of their flavour is in the skin.
So I kind of agree with the onion bit, (but no one eats brown bits, surely ?)but not the rice or mushroom bit. I think you sound very veyr odd ( and i don't mean O-D-D, I mean odd. And I think you are quite OCD'ish and have a bit of an odd relationship to food.
Does that sound like a fair analysis ?

StellaSays Mon 11-Jul-11 18:03:45

I cook mushrooms with the mud on (slattern), I'm of the opinion that it won't kill me and I won't notice it so why bother? My friend peels mushrooms and I think he is bonkers but he is very fastidious.

I do on the other hand peel my onions properly, who wants to eat skin?

GrimmaTheNome Mon 11-Jul-11 18:04:58

I once stayed with my Sikh friend and they carefully went through the rice checking for unwanted bits - they bought Basmati by the sackful back in the days when the rest of us were stuck with long grain. Don't think they washed it though.

The thing about onions is that between the papery layer and the properly white part you can get intermediate stage - sometimes the top end is really papery but the root is quite edible. So its a matter of judgement whether you take it all off or not grin

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