Top Pick Of The Week

May 11, 2010

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Red quinoa garnished with ripe red tomatoes. Photo by Katharine Pollak | THE NIBBLE.

WHAT IT IS: Frozen whole grain rice and quinoa mixes, ready in 45 seconds.
WHY IT’S DIFFERENT: In just 45 seconds, the cryogenic freezing process yields whole grains that taste like they’ve been cooked for an hour.
WHY WE LOVE IT: Now we can have whole grains every day, for meals and snacks. It’s a great way to get our 48g of whole grains daily.

.Village Harvest
Page 2: Whole Grain Rice & Other Varieties


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Varieties Of Village Harvest Frozen Whole Grains

All of Village harvest’s microwaveable grains are good for you: heart-healthy grains that are a good source of dietary fiber. In addition to serving them as sides, you can stir them into soups, add them to salads or serve them as rice salads—hot or cold.

  • Brown Rice. For all the times you’ve wished you had the time to make healthier brown rice: This bag’s for you! One of our favorite snacks is sprinkling the long-grain brown rice with Parmesan cheese and fresh-ground pepper. Comfort food in 45 seconds (or as Village Harvest calls it, “instant grainification”).
  • Brown, Red, Wild Rice Medley. More exciting than plain brown rice, this blend of red rice and wild rice provides visual appeal, texture (wild rice is crunchy) and flavor complexity.
  • Quinoa. If you don’t know quinoa (KEEN-wah), here’s a great chance to get acquainted. An important crop in the Andes region of South America, quinoa was a sacred grain to the Incas. It is an unusually complete protein source, with a protein content  of 12% to 18% and a balanced set of essential amino acids. Like rice, quinoa is gluten-free and easy to digest.

Serve the “Un” Fried Brown Rice or Spicy Thai Brown Rice mix hot or at room temperature in a lettuce cup, for a “rice salad.” Photo courtesy Village Harvest.

  • Spicy Thai Brown Rice. Here, the brown rice is accented with bell peppers, tomatoes and eggs and seasoned with garlic, fish sauce, sesame oil, soy sauce and sriracha sauce. Along with the “Un” Fried Brown Rice, this is our favorite.
  • “Un” Fried Brown Rice. We love this healthy approach to fried rice. The brown rice is dotted with carrots, cooked omelet, green peas and seasoned with soy sauce. You may miss the grease of restaurant fried rice, but this “un”-fried rice is guilt-free.

While we love the grains, we do have two little nits, with the packaging.

  • Not all of our kernels were “individually frozen” and “pourable.” In some bags, the kernels had frozen into large balls that had to be pounded in large bowls to get them into smaller chunks suitable for the microwave.
  • There is no tear strip to create a pour spout: You’ve got to cut your own. Although we used scissors, this often proved messy, with grains from the fully-packed bags spilling out onto the counter and the floor.

Hopefully, Village Harvest will work on these problems. In the interim, we’ll open and pour over a large bowl, because these “instant” whole grains are one of the most welcome new additions to our kitchen.

—Karen Hochman

Village Harvest Frozen Whole Grains

Brown Rice; Brown, Red, Wild Rice Medley; Quinoa; Spicy Thai Brown Rice; “Un” Fried Brown Rice

  • 20-Ounce Bag
    $4.99 to $7.99


The company also sells premium uncooked rice: arborio, organic arborio, basmati, brown basmati, organic basmati, golden quinoa, jasmine, brown jasmine, organic jasmine, organic brown jasmine and sprouted brown GABA.

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Village Harvest Brown Rice
Just open, pour, reseal and microwave. Photo by Jerry Deutsch | THE NIBBLE.

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