Why should you cook with BOMBA rice?
The Bomba rice is probably the oldest rice variety in the Albufera de Valencia : Its roots are still unknown. It is true that a variety was brought from Asia, probably in the 18th century, and was cultivated in different rice-growing areas of Valencia, and it evolved according to the marsh (Bombón, Bombeta, Bombita we have no evidence that it has ever existed). the same family, and with similar organoleptic properties.
Bomba rice was discarded in the 1960s by other varieties that did not have as much quality, but the yield was much higher so there was more profit for the farmer. Still, it never ceased its cultivation; most farmers would grow a small part of their crops, cultivated for self-consumption and commercialized as exclusive rice. In the 90’s its production volume increased again.
It is a variety of rice of the Japanese subspecies of short grain, almost spherical and with a central pearl. If raw, the grain is small; After been cooked, it doubles its volume, “bulging”, hence its name probably.
Of all the varieties gron in the Albufera lake in Valencia, it is the most resistant, with more amylose-type starch (24.9% approx.) Taste wise, you will feel a consistent and thick grain. If you want the grain to release its starch during cooking soupy or honeyed dishes, it must be stirred properly. For the grain to maximize the flavors and scents of the ingredients, it must be cooked according to its hardness, for over 20 min for dry dishes and around 18 min in creamy dishes.
Its price is influenced by its low yield in the field and difficulty in cultivation; Its plant is leafy and very tall (about 1.5 m), very prone to lodging and exposed to crop losses due to the rains in September. The price is also influenced by its gastronomic quality, with a loose, tasty and dry grain texture, as it has historically been prepared in Valencian dishes or similar.
Article written by Juan Carlos GALBIS -Master of rice masters-, José ZAFRA, -passionate about rice- y Juan Valero -Gerente de ARROZ TARTANA-.