Wash the rice and soak in 2 cups water for 1-2 hours. The soaking is not necessary, but helps to reduce the cooking time and makes the rice nice and fluffy.
Now, take the rice, salt (optional) and water in a closed heavy bottomed pot and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down, such that the water does not boil over. Cook until all the water evaporates. Serve hot.
If you turn the heat off before the rice is cooked, the rice will remain hard. Make sure that the rice is cooked according to your preference before turning down the heat. You may then add some water while reheating.
Yields 3 cups