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What are the different types of rice?

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Quick Answer

There are four main types of rice: short grain, medium grain, long grain and specialty. Chinese black rice and Bengal baby basmati, are two types of specialty rice.

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Full Answer

Well-known short-grain rice includes short-grain brown rice and Arborio. Arborio is named after the town in Italy where it derives and is a Italian superfino rice used for making risotto. Bomba and Japanese-style rice are medium-grain rice varieties used for making paella and sushi, respectively. Bomba absorbs twice the amount of liquid as long-grain rice but never gets sticky.

Basmati and jasmine are two examples of long-grain rice. Both are very popular in Indian, Pakistani, Persian and Thai cuisine. American options include long-grain white rice and short-, medium- and long- grain brown rice.

Wehani is a reddish-brown American designer hybrid rice made of basmati and long-grain brown rice. Lundberg Family Farms developed the rice, and Wehani is the trademarked brand name of the hybrid. Wehani has a nutty fragrance and a chewy texture.

The international family of red rice encompasses Himalayan red, purple Thai and Colusari red rice, which originated in a Maryland seed bank and now grows in Sacramento Valley.

Chinese black rice is a medium-grain rice with white kernels encased by black bran. When cooked, Chinese black lightens to a rich, dark purplish hue. There are more than 40,000 different varieties of rice worldwide.

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