Brown on Rice

Our family has been eating brown rice for years and years, and well, years. Whole grains are the mainstay in the food we eat, and we have brown rice five meals a week at least.

We usually ate short-grain, cooking it in a pressure cooker so each grain is open slightly. But our brown rice-eating habits changed after a gift from our friend, Howard, who mailed us two pounds of a Koda Farms’ Kokuho Rose Heirloom medium-grain rice. It is tasty enough to be eaten alone.
The rice is grown by the Koda family at their farm in California. In the late ’20s Keisaburo Koda and his family settled in South Dos Palos in the San Joaquin Valley, where they grew rice. During World War II, the Koda family was sent to an internment camp and the farm was stripped bare in their absence. Afterward, the Koda family rebuilt their farming operation. The third generation has since taken over.
Koda Farms sells varieties of brown and white rice, plus rice flour. Their products are available in natural food stores across the country but unfortunately none are nearby so we order directly from the farm. As their website notes, “it’s not for the unmotivated.” The farm doesn’t accept plastic. It does checks and money orders. So you have to email your order and where you live so they can factor in shipping costs. They email back the total cost and you send a check. You definitely need to plan ahead.
We order 20-pound bags and be forewarned, shipping isn’t cheap. But we use about four cups of rice a week and the bag lasts three months or more. The rice comes with ample instructions to cook it on the stove top or in a rice cooker. Then, there is the delightful postcard included in the order, with the hand-written note from Robin Koda stating, “Thank you for your discernment.”
In all, it’s a fulfilling purchase.

An update: Since I wrote this blog, Koda Farms has changed the size of the bags to 15 pounds, which fits snugly in one of the U.S. Postal Service mailers. The shipping costs have dropped as a result. I am waiting for my latest shipment to arrive any day now. I am down to may last two cups.

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