Anyway, with my new schedule permitting me to be home more often for noon dinner, I have sometimes resorted to using instant rice as my staple. The way I always used to make instant rice was by bringing the designated amount of water to a boil in a saucepan that has a tight-fitting lid. Then, I would add an equal amount of instant rice, cover the saucepan tightly, remove it from the fire (or slide it as far away from the firebox as possible), and let it stand five minutes.
However, I'm really pleased with my new method. It takes advantage of both the warming oven and the ever-present teakettle. The first thing to do is put the teakettle directly over the fire so that the water is boiling. Then, half fill a clean pint jar with instant rice.
|The teakettle boiling directly over the fire with|
the instant rice ready in the pint jar in the
warming oven. A hamburger steak is frying to
the right of the teakettle.
|The instant rice and water mixture just after being put in the|
|The finished rice ready to be served.|
a) A little time is saved by not having to bring water to a boil in a saucepan (although, if your teakettle is hot, you could save time by pouring boiling water into the saucepan).
b) If your cooktop is small and cluttered with other cooking vessels, your rice at least won't be taking up any precious cooking space.
c) If you don't eat all of the rice, the leftovers are already in a container that can conveniently go in the refrigerator.
d) I think the canning jar is easier to wash than a saucepan.
If you have a warming oven and have occasion to prepare instant rice, give this method a try and let me know how it works for you. I've classified this as a "cheating with your cookstove" post because instant rice is definitely "cheating" in my book. Sometime I'll have to share Nancy's and my favorite way to prepare rice. It is definitely not instant, and the result is much tastier than this, but this does in a pinch. We all get into cooking pinches due to time constraints sometimes, and I just want to show that a wood cookstove can be the cook's best friend even in one of those pinches.
The pictures you see are from the preparation of my noon dinner today. Marjorie was very busy since the day was largely spent making different things for Christmas. My niece Josie came over and we made our traditional recipe for fudge and then tried a vintage recipe for orange fudge, which didn't turn out too well. I was also boiling cider to make a pork loin for Nancy's family's Christmas.
In an idle moment, Josie snapped a picture through the kitchen window of my brother's cattle, and she was dead set on me sharing it with you in this post. Hope you enjoy it.