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Steamed Rice with Pickled Japanese Plums

  • ACTIVE: 15 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME: 1 HR 10 MIN
  • SERVINGS: 4 to 6
  • VEGETARIAN

Sylvan Mishima Brackett prepares rice the traditional Japanese way, rinsing it several times before cooking to remove a lot of the sticky starch. Every spring, he salt-pickles cherry blossoms to fold into rice; salty Japanese pickled plums are a good substitute.

  1. 1 1/2 cups medium-grain Japanese rice
  2. 2 pitted umeboshi (Japanese pickled plums), cut into 1/4-inch dice
  1. In a bowl, cover the rice with water. Swish the rice vigorously, then drain off the milky water. Repeat 3 more times, until the water runs nearly clear, then let the rice stand in a fine sieve for 30 minutes.
  2. Transfer the rice to a small saucepan and add 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons of water. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the water is just absorbed, about 15 minutes. Keeping the pan covered, remove the rice from the heat and let stand for 10 minutes.
  3. Using a moistened rice paddle or wooden spoon, gently fold the plums into the rice. Serve right away.