"We cook the rice."
It should not be acceptable if you're talking about cooking rice in general. We cook THE rice is a SPECIFIC rice that you're cooking, not just any rice that you have.
我们做米饭 to "We cook rice", sounds like a more accurate translation.
How well does the idea of "the" translate in Chinese? When you use "the" in English, you are often talking about something specific. In Chinese you'd use something like 那个 or 这个 to solve this issue.
We cook rice = 我们做米饭
We cook the rice = 我们做这个米饭