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Old 01-03-2007, 04:54 PM   #61
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I use the $15 non-stick Black & Decker model all the time for steamed rice. None of the common rice cookers are that complex, some just have a few extra timing features and energy levels really (and capacities of course) - kinda like a $50 microwave vs a $200 microwave that has a baked potato button and alarm to get you up in the morning...

(Not to rain on anybodys parade that bought the $4500 microwave with the buttons labeled "Cream of Wheat" or "Mac & Cheese"... )

Really good rice still needs to be washed, bloomed, and cooked with the proper amount of water, and then briefly rested whether you use a hand-hammered wok or a $6000 Fuji-Express 9000 Plus. I like rice cookers for their consistency of quality product. It knows exactly when the water is all absorbed and the temp begins to rise. I can guess pretty good with rice in a pot when it reaches this stage, but not nearly as well as a thermocouple device.
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Old 01-03-2007, 05:36 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by Dina
Has anyone ever made Spanish rice (fried in oil with added peppers and spices) in a rice cooker? Will it work well?
Yes, I have. I used the recipe for arroz a la Mexicana (tomato-based Spanish rice) in The Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook, which I think is a must-have for really getting the most out of the appliance, especially the high-priced fuzzy logic ones.

The recipe calls for using either the "Quick Cook" or the regular cycle to first saute the onion and garlic ( no peppers, but you could add them too). Then the rice is added and sauteed, then some tomato, and finally the liquid and some spices. Then you close the lid and reset the cooker on the regular cycle (or if you used the regular cycle, you just let it continue) to complete the dish.

This method for sauteeing right in the cooker can be used for a variety of rice-based dishes, including all sorts of pilafs.
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Old 01-03-2007, 05:55 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dina
Has anyone ever made Spanish rice (fried in oil with added peppers and spices) in a rice cooker? Will it work well?
I have. I have also made rice mixes in it, such as Zatarain's jambalaya, red beans & rice, and black beans & rice, and theLipton packaged flavored rices. You just follow the stove top instrucitons. They come out just as they would if you were babysitting them in a pot on top of the stove.
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Old 01-04-2007, 03:46 AM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dina
Has anyone ever made Spanish rice (fried in oil with added peppers and spices) in a rice cooker? Will it work well?
Absolutely. You can even add chicken meat and veggies to it. Be sure to use only boneless meat, otherwise your non-stick pot will have scratches due to the stirring process. You can also boil plain Chinese rice porridge or with veggies as well.
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Old 01-04-2007, 07:43 AM   #65
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I have one and haven't ued it more than a couple of times. Not sure why.. maybe I'll dust it off and try it again.
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Old 01-04-2007, 10:07 AM   #66
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Give it a try! It should work well for you.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:02 PM   #67
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Many people try using the old 1 cup rice 2 cups water in rice cookers and that usually doesn't work. This is too much water for most cookers and will make the cooker spew water all over the counter top. Then the person that didn't read the instructions will tell everyone that the cooker doesn't work and then give it away or put it with the junk cookware that also didn't work as advertised because they didn't read the instructions for that either.

They need to use the cup that comes with the cooker and fill the cook pot with water to the marks on the side of the pan.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:13 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by Ron W.
Many people try using the old 1 cup rice 2 cups water in rice cookers and that usually doesn't work. This is too much water for most cookers and will make the cooker spew water all over the counter top. Then the person that didn't read the instructions will tell everyone that the cooker doesn't work and then give it away or put it with the junk cookware that also didn't work as advertised because they didn't read the instructions for that either.

They need to use the cup that comes with the cooker and fill the cook pot with water to the marks on the side of the pan.
Excellent reminder, Ron. Plus, it's even easier than getting out a couple different measuring cups. My 10-cup Panasonic has the proper marks for white rice, brown rice, sushi, and thin or thick porridge.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:53 PM   #69
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There are a bunch of variables that go into how much water you need for the perfect batch of rice. The type of rice, age of the rice (moisture content of the grain), how long you allow it to bloom, the surface area of the batch you're making vs total volume, the heat output of the cooker during the heating cycles, how long you let it rest afterwords, elevation of your kitchen, etc., etc.

With the brand of American long-grain rice I buy in my kitchen with my usual size batch, with my rice cooker, with my cooking methods (incl. blooming & resting) I usually use 2.25-C of water for 2-C of Rice - almost a 1 to 1 ratio.
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Old 01-04-2007, 03:12 PM   #70
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You simply put in the desired amount of rice (1/2 cup uncooked equals 1 cup cooked, and 1/2 cup of cooked rice is considered a "portion"), rinse the excess starch off, place the insert on the counter, place your left hand on top of the rice with your fingers splayed like you are doing "itsy bitsy spider" with your kids, then fill the pot with water to the second knuckle of your middle finger (Yes, THAT middle finger!). Remove your hand, put on the lid, and turn on the machine.
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