As with legumes, brown rice must be properly prepared before consumption. Why brown rice and not white and save the hassle you say? Well white rice is just a filler, simple carb and has little to no nutrients since its been stripped away. Brown rice needs to be soaked because it contains high amounts of phytic acid. For those who don’t know about phytic acid here’s a link to enlighten you on why proper soaking is important. With proper soaking the amount of phytic acid in brown rice can be reduced by 96%
How to soak brown rice: First you start with 1 cup of rice in a glass bowl. Add de-chlorinated water such as Spring Water, to cover the rice. There is no need for an acidic medium; the water does all the work. Let your rice set out uncovered in a warm area for 24 hours. Once done you need to save a half-cup’s worth of this soaking water. Strain some of this soaking water into a glass and cover and place in your refrigerator to save for later. This saved soaking water is quite important. Every time you ferment a new batch of rice you will do like I have already explained: Covering your rice with spring water, but you will now add that half-cup of saved water to your new batch of rice. What you’re doing is creating, a bacteria, soaking water that is going to remove the phytic acid. Every time you save a half-cup of this soaking water and re-use it, it removes more and more of the phytic acid. It takes about 3 good soaks to get a really good culture water, by which time your rice will have 96% of its phytic acid removed every time you soak your rice. So every time you soak make sure to save a half-cup of the soaking water and place it in your fridge. The culture will have a bad smell, not strong, which is a good sign. It means your water is full of phytic acid eating bacteria! Your culture will stay good in the fridge for about 1-2 weeks, so make sure you are fermenting rice often to keep the culture alive, or you will have to start the culture a new all over again. To know if your culture is still alive if it has gone too long without a ferment then smell the water and if it smells bad it’s still alive, if the water doesn’t smell like anything then its dead and you must start over. Once you have fermented your rice make sure you strain and rinse well and cook as usual and enjoy the available nutrients!