Originally, a crop circle found in rice paddies. The patterns of these rice rings vary greatly in shape and size, but were first identified over 4000 years ago. Alexander the Great wrote about the rice rings in the chronicles of his travels and conquests. Ancient writings also indicate that the appearance of said rice rings was always accompanied by mysterious lights in the sky. Some experts claim these lights to be UFOs piloted by extraterrestrials. This theory is gaining support and popularity in the scientific community.
Unfortunately, rice rings have become increasingly rare in the past few centuries, and their appearance now is shrouded in much secrecy.
The term is now sometimes applied to the papery ring that forms around a saucepan's inside walls if rice is now removed from the stovetop quickly enough.
If "The X-files" was still on television, they would definitely have an episode about rice rings.