Known for its luxurious nutty flavor and chewy texture, wild rice isn't really rice at all. Instead, it's a long-grain marsh grass native to the northern Great Lakes area, where it's harvested by the local Indians. There's also now commercial wild rice production in California, as well as several Midwest states. It's important to clean wild rice thoroughly before cooking it. The best method is to place the rice in a medium bowl and fill it with cold water. Give it a couple of stirs and set aside for a few minutes. Any debris will float to the surface and the water can then be poured off. Depending on the method used, wild rice can take up to an hour to cook; overcooking will produce starchy results. Admittedly, wild rice is expensive, but both pleasure and budget are extended by combining it with brown rice or bulghur wheat. Wild rice is also called Indian rice. See also rice.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.