Basmati is an elegant, sweetly fragrant and long-grained rice variety native to India and Pakistan, where it is considered a grain for special occasions. It is available white (polished) or brown (wholegrain), the latter being higher in fibre.
Wonderful in pilafs and biriyanis, basmati is also a good choice for delicate salads and stuffings, or when plainly boiled as a side dish. It can be cooked in stock or water. Add a piece of cinnamon or bay leaf to the cooking liquid for extra taste.