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Old 11-08-2007, 08:47 AM   #1
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What do you make with your rice cooker?

I have a credit card that earns me points. With those points I just got myself this Zojirushi rice cooker. It should be arriving in about a week.

So while I am waiting for it to come, I figured I would ask all of you what you use yours for. Now I know some wise guy is going to come on and say "making rice" but i am looking for more than that. It can be used for all sorts of grains and other foods as well. I am guessing you can even cook some one pot meals in it. I was thinking along the lines of putting some rice in the cooker along with some scallions and ginger and then adding some pre-made sauce (thinking Trader Joes) and some cooked chicken for a quick weekday meal. Let me hear some other ideas like this.

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Old 11-08-2007, 09:28 AM   #2
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Hi GB,

I used to religiously use my rice cooker but somehow over the course of the years I got rid of it and went back to my stove top method. I guess got rid of one more countertop appliance.

I never made grains in my rice cooker but I say why not. I used to make all types of pilafs in my rice cooker. Here are two recipes that I have used countless times in the past and comes out great in a rice cooker:

Coconut Rice (I concocted it so it's not any cuisine specific but definitely has hints of Asia):

Wash Rice and add it to the rice cooker (follow directions on the amount of water and actually reduce that amount by 1/2 a cup, you will see later why)
I use shredded chicken - 1 cup (I almost always make it and freeze it ahead of time in ziploc bags so its ready to go when I want to make something)
frozen french style green beans
Slices of bell pepper (red and green)
1 Carrot grated
1 onion thinly sliced

Throw a bunch of cilantro in a food processor with 1/2 cup of canned coconut milk, few cloves of garlic, a small jalapeno (remove the seeds and membrane if you want it less spicy) and some lime juice. Blend until smooth.

In a saute pan add some oil and throw in an onion and let it turn slightly golden. Next add all the veggies to remove the rawness. Add the chicken and mix it all together

Pour it all into the rice cooker and pour in the coconut mixture and stir to combine. Taste for salt and forget about it.

Another simple pilaf type recipe:

Dice a medium potato (skin and all into small cubes)
Dice a large tomato into small cubes
1 cup frozen peas and carrots
Dice a green chili into thin strips
You will also need some brown mustard seeds, whole cumin seeds and curry leaves (if you can find them, else skip them)
Pinch of turmeric
salt to taste

Heat 1 tbsp of oil. When it's hot add the mustard and cumin seeds and they will start to splutter. Reduce the heat add the chili and potatoes and let it become golden brown. Add the frozen veggies and tomatoes and tumeric. Stir it all and pour it into the rice in a rice cooker (fill water again per direction). Cook and enjoy with a simple yogurt raita (yogurt, cucumber, tomatoes, mint, cilantro, pinch of ground cumin, salt and black pepper)

Hope you like these. There are many more I used to make but these were two of the more popular dishes that my husband preferred.
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Old 11-08-2007, 09:34 AM   #3
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Yakuta I knew you would come through for me. THANK YOU. These both sound amazing. The first one sounds right up my alley. The second one sounds great too. Especially since I have some brown mustard seeds that I have been looking for uses for.

This is the exact type of things I was looking for. Thank you so much.

OK keep em coming guys
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Old 11-08-2007, 10:07 AM   #4
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Jersey Mids or any other small New potatoes work well also :)
add a little Mint as well.
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Old 11-08-2007, 11:24 AM   #5
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GB, run don't walk to your nearest bookstore or online site and buy The Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook: 250 No-Fail Recipes for Pilafs, Risottos, Polenta, Chilis, Soups, Porridges, Puddings and More, from Start to Finish in Your Rice Cooker.

This book is indispensable not only for using your rice cooker in the best way possible for all types of rice but also for the variety of suggestions as indicated in the title.

The above link is to the current paperback edition, but you can also find the hardcover, which I have, if you prefer.

My apologies to this weird bold-face. It came along with my copying the title of the book, and I don't know how to get rid of it.
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Old 11-08-2007, 11:34 AM   #6
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Thanks Suzy. I will go to the bookstore this weekend to check it out. One thing that one of the reviewers of that book mentioned is that flavors sometimes linger in the cooker and bleed into future dishes. Have any of you found that? For instance, if you make a meal in your crockpot that has garlic, do you find that if you make rice next you can still taste the garlic?
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Old 11-08-2007, 11:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB View Post
Thanks Suzy. I will go to the bookstore this weekend to check it out. One thing that one of the reviewers of that book mentioned is that flavors sometimes linger in the cooker and bleed into future dishes. Have any of you found that? For instance, if you make a meal in your crockpot that has garlic, do you find that if you make rice next you can still taste the garlic?
Maybe some people really take advantage of that "keep warm" function? I don't know, but I've never noticed a problem. Of course, I will admit that I use the rice cooker primarily for rice and much less often for other dishes -- which is sort of a shame, and I should try more of the recipes.

My cooker, which is the large National/Panasonic version of yours, has a nonstick vessel. I clean it and all removable parts thoroughly each times, as well as wiping down the machine itself, especially around the opening.
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Old 11-08-2007, 01:59 PM   #8
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That is good to know Suzy, thanks!
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Old 11-08-2007, 03:24 PM   #9
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You can not only make plain rice, or brown rice, but you can also make any recipe that contains rice, including those rice mixes (i.e. Zatarain's) in a rice cooker. Just follow the package directions for STOVETOP.

I have the KRUPS RICE COOKER, which has a steaming insert that fits into the top lip of the rice bucket rather than in the bottom, so I can cook my rice and steam vegetables, or even fish, at the same time. Even if I am not making rice, with the addition of a FOLDING STEAMER BASKET, I can steam two items, such as two vegetables, or fish and vegetables, at the same time
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