Rice pilaf (A)
My healthy vegan friend Francis gave me this recipe. He often cooks himself rice with vegetables, starting with camargue rice, red rice from the Camargue region of France. This rice may have certain nutrients or minerals that make it particularly nutritious for him and popular with many others.
Beware that white (refined) rice may devoid of nutrients. Be aware that both brown and white rice can have high concentrations of arsenic. To reduce possible exposure to arsenic, you can substitute quinoa, buckwheat, and millet as healthy alternatives.
If you have a choice, red or brown rice can be healthier than white rice, also known as “polished rice”. The milling process that removes the hull also removes vitamins and nutrients from the grain. The acute deficiency of thiamine, vitamin B1, also known as beriberi, was discovered by the Dutch doctor Christiaan Eijkman at the dawn of the twentieth century. Working on the island of Java in what is now Indonesia. Dr. Eijkman clearly observed that chickens fed white rice had their nerves damaged (became paralyzed), while chickens fed brown (unpolished) rice did not. He projected this observation to human beings, and he won a Nobel Prize in 1929.
Similarly, Dr. Joseph Goldberger in the earlier twentieth century discovered that the cause of pellagra, a severe deficiency of niacin, vitamin B3, was milled or uncooked corn. The signs of pellagra are diarrhea, dermatitis, dementia, and death. Ironically, both Eijkman and Goldberger suffered the insults of their colleagues who firmly believed that the cause of beriberi and pellagra were infectious, contagious germs (and not nutrient deficiencies). Some things don’t change.
My healthy vegan friend Francis is not troubled by this history, and he seems to enjoy keeping himself healthy on rice and vegetables, among other recipes. He boils the rice and then adds one half of a chopped onion, chopped carrots and green beans. After the rice is cooked, he turns off the heat and adds soy sprouts, a teaspoon of good-quality soy sauce, and a pinch of stevia leaf. You could substitute celery or cucumbers for the carrots while cooking or after you turn off the heat. If you use a pressure cooker, it is quicker to cook.
- Pressure cooker
- 300 mL water
- 100 grams rice
- 1 carrot
- handful green beans
- ½ onion
- ½ red paprika
- 1 handful sprouts, soy or bean
- 1 pinch mineral or sea salt
- ½ teaspoon stevia leaf
- Boil water.
- Add salt and rice to boiling water.
- Wash, peel and chop carrot into blocks hal the size of your thumb. Add to the water.
- Wash green beans and add to the water.
- Chop onion and add to the water.
- Chop paprika and add to the water.
- Cook until vegetables are soft but not mushy.
- Turn off the heat and let sit two minutes.
- Add spices, mix, and serve.