How to Counteract Too Much Salt In Rice
The right amount of salt may vary a little from person to person. However, too much salt in food is something anyone with working taste buds will know immediately. It can ruin an otherwise perfectly good meal. Ideally, we shouldn't over-salt rice in the first place, but it can happen easily. This is especially the case when we are trying to shake in some salt to the rice water and the top comes of the container. Thankfully, when this does happen, there are a few tricks you can use to fix rice that is too salty.
At oneHOWTO, we explain how to counteract too much salt in rice. This tips are easy and effective, helping you to salvage your culinary mishaps and save your dinner.
Counteract too much salt in rice with lemon
Putting too much salt in your rice is far too easy to do. Even if we try to cover it up with more sauce or other ingredients, it can spoil the dish. You may not know that acid can help you reduce salt in food. One of natures most delicious acidic foods is the lemon, our first way to counteract too much salt in rice.
There are times when lemon may not be suitable as a way to counterbalance salt in rice. If the flavors of a particular dish do not go well with citrus or if you simply do not like the zesty taste of lemon, you may want to skip ahead.
Fortunately, there many dishes where adding lemon can improve the dish even more. This is the case with special fried rice or paella dishes where lemon is an important ingredient. The method of counteracting salt with lemon is simple, just squeeze a little lemon juice and stir in to the over-salted rice until fully incorporated. If the rice still tastes too salty, you can add more and try again.
If citrus really doesn't work for you, you can try using apple cider vinegar. This is another acidic foodstuff which can help balance the salty flavor. For it to be effective, use the same method as we have explained with the lemon.
Reducing the saltiness of rice isn't the only advantage of apple cider vinegar. Take a look at the benefits of apple cider vinegar to know more.
Counteract too much salt in rice with water
This method of fixing over-salted rice is one which is time sensitive. When making perfect rice, we might want to taste it to see how it is coming along. If we taste the rice and it still has some bite, but it is too salty, we can drain the water and replenish the pot with unsalted hot water. You can then finish the boil and complete the rice to the desired softness.
However, if we discover the rice is too salty only after it has been cooked completely, then we might be able to counteract it by rinsing thoroughly. This method of desalting a salty dish requires us to submerge the rice in warm water with no salt in it at all. We wash the rice in the warm water, drain and then repeat. We should do this as many times as is required. When you have tasted the rice and find it is as salty as you need it to be, then you can continue to use the rice for whatever dish you are making. If we do this with boiling water, we may overcook the rice, so be careful.
Counteract too much salt in rice with milk
As with the lemon trick for desalting rice, this dish only works if the ingredients work well with milk. To cook dishes well, we need to be attentive during the whole process. We should taste as we go, something which will help us to avoid over-salting our food.
If you are making a rice dish which is creamy, then we might be able to use milk to counteract the salt. This may be the case if you are making a creamy savory curry or even a sweet dish such as as rice pudding. Making rice pudding with condensed milk is a great example since we can use the condensed milk to counteract the salt.
The high-fat content of cream, condensed milk or full-fat milk works to counteract the saltiness of the rice. By adding a tablespoon or more of cream or high-fat milk to the dish with rice in it, then the saltiness can be reduced. However, this will not work if the dish isn't creamy in the first place.
Another rice dish where this trick will work wonders is a risotto. You can find our recipe for a Portobello mushroom risotto can be found here.
Counteract too much salt in rice with potato
Starch is another element that can help you absorb excess salt in certain dishes. To do this, you will need to add a raw potato with the skin on, although it will need to be washed thoroughly. Thanks to its high starch content, it will be able to absorb a large part of the salt that you have put into the pot to cook the rice. Once the potato has cooked, remove it from the pot.
This is a trick which is most commonly reserved for stew dishes, but it can be helpful with rice when cooking in a pot of water. However, this trick is also time sensitive. If you only notice you have over-salted the rice at the end, putting a potato in won't work. To counteract the salt, it will need to cook in the water. If we only do it at the end, we will overcook the rice. This is why it can work for stews well because stews take a long time to cook and may even benefit from having a potato in them.
Although versatile and very delicious, rice can have problems other than being too salty. One example is the fact it can contain trace amounts of arsenic. Our article on how to remove arsenic from rice can help with this problem. If you have lots of left over dry rice, we can even show you how to make rice flour at home.
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