the issue with rice noodles appear to be not so much the ingredients but rather it touches the rabbinic prohibition of what is called “Bishul Akum.” thats right folks the rabbis wanted to safeguard the jewish people in this very long ugly bitter exile. so among the things they instituted was not to eat the food that was cooked by a gentile. this fence is really meant to protect us from marrying their sons and daughters. go figure!
there are mainly two important facts in navigating the guidelines of “food cooked by a gentile.” the main fact mostly considered is if the food with go up on the table of kings. the concept of “table of kings is not literal however but it means simply that it would be served in a bar mitzvah or wedding or some important occasion. not a barbecue. the first time i learned about this prohibition came up with eating hard boiled eggs at a hotel (assuming the pots were kosher). since hard boiled eggs are nt something that is going to go up on President Trumps table and will not even be served at a sunday brunch with bagels (unless you want to give someone extreme gas). so the issue of hard boiled eggs for example are not a problem. obviously the opposite such as fish and steak that are served at nice functions areas issue.
the question was raised what about rice noodles? apparently rice noodles are not prepared the same as wheat noodles which are pressed four and water and no cooking is applied. cooking is used, however for rice noodles. it seems many of the Kosher Certification companies seem to differ on this issue. three main organizations hold the view that it does go up on the table of kings and there for one cannot buy it without a kosher certification.
others argue saying that the cooking is ronin order to eventually creation item that does not go on the table of kings. (it gets dried and is sold like that) those who counter this say the the cooking is something different than the noodle making. this leads to a similar question concerning parboiled rice? anther question was raised about potato flour?
so now to get to the issue of the par boiled rice. the cooking process has to be up to a third cooked to be considered cooked by the Torah standards. so parboiled rice is not an issue.
here is the bottom line – if a product was cooked by a gentile and was subsequently rendered inedible (either by dryng for example) and needs further cooking, SO IT LOST ITS ORIGINAL PROHIBITIVE STATE OF FOOD THAT WAS COOKED BYA GENTILE. the same goes for instant rice. its inedible and needs more cooking.
now with potato or starch. they are made form non cooked potatoes. potato flakes on the other hand are made form cooked, pressed and tired potatoes and technically do not require “recooking” but rather rehydrating which could b done with cold water.
Steam cooking – Rabbi Moshe Feinstein permitted the factory type of steam cooking – not a home style cooking) and didn’t include it in the prohibition of “bishel akum.”
so if rice noodles are made from fully cooked rice, then we need to know how they are cooking in it. are they cooking with steam or boiling water? if they are cooking with steam, then we could apply Rabbi Feinsteins rule and the noodles don’t require a hechsher (assuming no funky ingredients) if the noodles are cooked in hot water and then subsequently dried we would have to ascertain if they just need to be rehydrated with cold water or we need to actually cook them again. if they need merely cold water then we would say there is an issue of “food cooked by a gentile.” if the noodles actually need re cooking, thence can say that the original cooked process was nullified since what we now have before us something that needs to be cooked again.