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Types of Japanese rice


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I can buy it loose at a rice shop not so far from me, though it's never in the supermarkets.

It's often described as halfway between mochi rice and regular rice. I use it often for making bento in the winter, as it stays softer than regular rice when cold.

From memory, the flavor is more mild than intense.

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  • 2 months later...

I had a really hard time finding Milky Queen. I knew that I had seen it in the supermarkets a couple years back but nothing since. I finally found it offered through my co-op, however they only had it in musen (no-wash) type and it is also haiga milled rice.


I really liked it and would definitely purchase it again.

For more on haiga milled rice

EDITED to add it was only available in a 2kg bag :sad:

Edited by torakris (log)

Kristin Wagner, aka "torakris"


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  • 4 months later...
This is my very first post.

Let me get to the point first:  Koshihikari is a variety of rice born in 1944 in Niigata prefecture as a cross between other varieties Norin Nos. 1 and 22.  The cross was later named Etsunan No. 17 in Fukui prefecture.  And, finally, in 1956, it was registered with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry as Norin No. 100.  The name Koshihikari comes from the phrase "Koshi no kuni ni hikari kagayaku" (brilliant in the countries of Koshi (i.e., Niigata and Fukui)).

Koshihikari is grown not only in Niigata prefecture but also in other parts of the country such as Chiba prefecture, and even in the United States.


Koshihikari is so good that it now accounts for one-third of the total rice acreage in Japan.

The quality of Koshihikari (and any other variety) considerably depends on the district in which it is grown.  The Uonuma district in Niigata prefecture is famous for producing Koshihikari of top quality, and this is why Koshihikari produced in this district, or Uonuma-san Koshihikari ("san" meaning "produce"), is called "burando mai" (brand rice).

Every year, Japan Grain Inspection Association releases its "Kome no shokumi ranking" (rice palatability ranking).


Uonuma-san Koshihikari is ranked as Toku A.  (Toku means Special.)


In short, Koshihikari is a variety of rice, while Uonuma-san Koshihikari may be called a "brand rice".

I live in Shiozawa town in the Uonuma district, which I just mentioned.  I'd like to tell you a little bit about my town.

Shiozawa town is renowned for producing Koshihikari of the very finest quality.  In fact, the town is the perfect place for growing Koshihikari (or any other variety of rice) because of its 1) crystal-clear water from melting snow (Shiozawa is in one of the snowiest regions in the world, along with Yuzawa town, a neighboring town, which is famous as the locale of "Snow Country" by Kawabata Yasunari, a Novel Prize-winning novelist), 2) large temperature difference between day and night in the ripening period of rice due to its location in Uonuma Basin (very hot during the day but cool during the night), and 3) superb agricultural techniques, which are absolutely necessary.

A few years ago, Kaisei JAS Law (Revised JAS Law) was enacted, which requires all rice dealers, including farmers wishing to sell their rice directly to customers, to have their rice inspected by a Shokuryo Jimusho (Local Food Agency Office) for grading and put a label on the bags of rice they sell to indicate the area of production, the variety, the year of production, and other necessary information.  So, the next time you buy a bag of rice, take a closer look at the label.

This has been a rather lengthly, maybe boring, description.  In my next post, I'd like to write about something more interesting.

I found an error. No ripening but grain-filling.

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I've tried this method and liked it very much. I only used too much water, and I should try to cook it in my rice cooker next time. But my rice cooker is very simple one, it has only on/off and warm/cook setting-this is all.

I used a regular pot, but will try to cook it in my donabe next time.

Special donabe for rice cooking: I have read on Kyoto Foodie Blog, there are some extra for rice cooking.

The cooked rice was delicious stir fried with some veggies.

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Hi, Amato! Your very first post on eGullet! Welcome to eGullet and the Japan Forum!

Thanks for the information about the special donabe for cooking rice. I was wrong. I found suihan-yo donabe (炊飯用土鍋), like these.

I haven't tried bikkuri daki yet. The problem with me is that I have to buy a 30-kg bag of brown rice!

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  • 1 month later...

I think you will get meaningful answers by starting a thread titled "Where can I get Japanese rice seeds?" or something like that in an appropriate Regional Cuisine forum.

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@Hiroyuki, thank you. :-) I bought first only a small bag of brown rice, now I did order more. I will try to make dango from this rice.

@Obese-Wan Kenobi, this link about planting rice could be interesting for you:


It is all Japanese but with many pictures, it looks like non-polished rice for me they use?

The whole site is fantastic, many ideas how to make traditional Japanese food at home!

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