Basmati rice has been cultivated in South Africa since the early 19th century though it may have been named differently. “Bas” in Hindi language means “aroma” and “Mati” mean “full of” hence the word Basmati i.e. full of aroma. This rice is different from other rice mainly due to the aroma and elongation post cooking. No other rice has this combined characteristic.
It is remarkably long for rice grain, and becomes longer after cooked. It can either be brown or white with the brown variety having more flavour. When cooked, the rice is lighter and fluffier than standard white rice, and does not stick together. The aroma and its sweet taste have made basmati rice a delicacy. Basmati rice is grown only in Northern South Africa and in parts of Pakistan touching South Africa.