Cooked long grain rice with tomato, basil, herbs and garlic.
Uncle Ben's Express rice takes just 2 minutes in a microwave, or around 3 minutes in a saucepan.
Gently steamed in a microwave-safe pouch for maximum freshness and flavour. Easy to open, quick to cook, great tasting and no washing up afterwards!
Available in a range of flavours.
Our family has always been pretty pleased with the Uncle Ben's plain rice and have used the boil in bag packets a lot. But about a year ago whilst browsing the supermarket shelves, I discovered the these microwaveable rice bag pouches that said they were ready in 2 mins. So obviously I thought I'd give them a try.
I purchased two Tomato and Basil flavoured ones, as they were on special for 2 for $5.00. That night we were having chicken kebabs and stir fry veges so I thought the flavourings would be something new to try.
The packet continues the theme of orange on it, like the boil bag range and it has the large logo at the top and a very appetising picture of the rice in a bowl with nice artwork of basil and fresh tomatoes. I like the fact the Nutritional Values also featured on the front, showing fairly low sugar and salt contents. The packet is a breeze to get into with a tear strip from either side. But before you open it you must always scrunch the bag to break up the clump of rice. I can not stress this enough because if you don't it will cook and bind together, still tastes alright but does not do it justice if you forget.
You only tear open the pouch a few cms and then cook in the microwave, 2mins only. Then its ready to eat. You can just tip it straight from the bag onto your plates. No messy clean up and it accompanies so many variables of veges and meat.
The tomato taste is there but is not overpowering and the basil taste is present but compliments the tomato well. The rice is moist, not gluggy and perfectly cooked. My children love the range of Uncle Bens Rice and I enjoy buying a product that is free of artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.
I continue to use this product, and always have a stock of them in the pantry.
One of my favourite lunches at work is to grab a pack of Uncle Ben's rice and then to add a piece of fish or some other protein. Tomato and Basil Rice is by far my favourite one, probably because my husband will not eat cooked tomato.
These are so easy to cook up. You just mush up the rice in the bag with your hands. I imagine it's someone who has recently annoyed me ha ha. Then you tear the bag open a cm or two, flip it into the microwave for 2 minutes and its done.
Rip it right open, pour it onto a plate, and add whatever delicious meat and even vegetables you want. The taste of the Tomato and Basil is not overpoweringly tomato-y and the herbs don't really feature highly either. But its not a bad tomato taste like some that can seem overly fake or vinegary.
I like the taste better than some of the really subtle tasting vege ones. One night I also used this Tomato and Basil Rice in a stir fry and even though hubby can't stand cooked tomato, he still yummed this down. Probably because with all the meat and vegetables, the flavour was washed down even more.
Overall I love this stuff. The price is awesome for a take to work lunch. Its easy to cook for my stir fries.I literally will not go back to raw rice again.
Hating to sound like a stuck record here, but this offering like the other reviewers have stated, didn't have the same flavour levels that I was expecting from a dish with such strong herbs as basil and garlic in it.
That being said, this isn't a bland dish by any means it still has flavour but not quite as much as I expected, however as a counterpoint to some other additions like some fresh grilled fish it goes wonderfully.
I would have to agree that the flavour in this packet had a lot more potential than it comes out with, but so saying, that can be a good thing, since a subtle rice dish like this makes an excellent side-dish that won't fight for dominance against the main elements of the mean, and yet retains enough character on it's own that it can be enhanced and used as a basis for a meal in it's own right.
For example, I tried half of this packet of rice as a base for a Kaweka Chicken Curry, and it added a really nice counterpoint flavour, without really taking anything away from the curry. I also used the other half of the rice as the basis for a little rice hot-pot, by adding strips of meat, some cooked frozen mixed veges, and a little spicy tomato relish and mustard pickle to thicken into a sauce. This turned out to be a winner for me and my young son, who is a very fussy eater.
The lack of strong flavours in this rice actually gives it a bit of an edge that is lost with some of the stronger-flavoured variants... there is no fighting for tastebud-time when it comes to this flavour, but that is definitely a let-down if you prefer your rice dishes as-is out of the packet.
Overall, another excellent addition, well worth considering if cooking time is tight in your household, but you are sick od takeaways and quick greasy fry-ups.
I must say that these Uncle Ben's rice packets are fantastic and healthy. Being vegetarian they work for me as well as my children who are not. A few nights ago I tried tomato and basil and honestly its just not one of my favorites. It may have to do with the fact that I don't care for cooked tomatoes but there was no other flavor there for me. Did not taste basil at all and maybe with a sauce and not alone it would have been better. Despite not caring for this flavor these rice packets are awesome and easy to use.
Rip 'n' nuke 'n' eat.
This makes preparation of a nice healthy meal during a time constraint lunchtime suspiciously easy.
The meal itself was quite tasty, and there was an ample serving. I would have been interested to see other mediteranean ingredients added - olives, capers etc but I guess everyone's tastes are different and one has to provide something that would appeal to the masses and I guess it does.
Whilst the Tomato and Basil rice could make a meal on its own, it would be better used as a side dish to another meal; for the price, it is well worth keeping a few in the store cupboard.
My only gripe - as with all of these other vegetarian meals is that the vegetarian symbol isn't one of the better known symbols (like the Vegetarian Society tick, or the Indian Green Dot in a box) and it isn't prominently displayed on the front - it isn't exactly prominent on the back either - being a rather plain black.
That said, this is a product I would buy again, and as I said - something to keep in the store cupboard for those quick meals to eat on the run.
Another work lunch, so again, I was after something quick and easy...
Being tomato and basil - usually something packed with flavour, I decided to just try this packet on it's own, rather than mixing it with anything.
I did have some cold meat from the bbq, but I ate that while I was waiting for the rice to cook...
I have to say, that after having had a couple of the other flavours of the rice, I was a little disappointed in the initial flavour of the rice. It was very subtle - more so than I would have anticipated from two such usually strong flavours... it's hard to mask the flavour of basil!
This is the kind of food that you taste as you swallow, rather that when it goes in your mouth - and I will be honest and say that I prefer strong flavours, so this one wont be going on a 'must have in the cupboard' list for me.
However, saying that, it's not a bad meal at all... just not to my taste.
If you like subtle flavours, then this one will be for you.
This is a very easy meal to prepare. My 6yr old daughter is rapt that she can make it by herself.
The rice doesn't stick together, its very fluffy.
We have tried a number of these and have found they have a very subtle flavor . I don't usually eat tomato flavoured anything, but I could easily eat this.
Random listing from 'Food'...
All trademarks, images and copyrights on this site are owned by their respective companies.
KIWIreviews is an independent entity, part of the ePLURIBUS.nz Network. This is a free public forum presenting user opinions on selected products, and as such the views expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinion of KIWIreviews.co.nz and are protected under New Zealand law by the "Honest Opinion" clause of the Defamation Act of 1992. KIWIreviews accepts no liability for statements made on this site, under the assumption that they are the true and honest opinions of the individual posters. In most cases, prices and dates stated are approximate and should be considered as only guidelines.
"We don't have much money to do this, so we're going to have to think."
Sir Ernest Rutherford