Rice is an important ingredient, both in Italian and international cuisine. Here in Italy we often use it to make first courses, instead of pasta (and it also is more digestible). Actually, rice can also be used to accompany meat or fish, or even to make sweet dishes, like rice cake or rice pudding.
Rice is a cereal grain, the seed of the grass species Oryza sativa, of Asian origin. Among cereals, it is the most complete, nutritionally speaking: it is composed by 79% of carbohydrates, 0,6% of lipids and 7% of proteins, besides a high content of fiber, vitamins and mineral salts.
Among the best-known Italian recipes with rice, there is risotto, that can be made both with surf and turf ingredients, or just with vegetables, or even with fruit.
The best-known international dishes with rice belong to Spanish or Eastern cuisine, for example paella or sushi.