The rice is a staple food of numerous dishes from around the world. Be it whether you’re from East Asia or from Latin America, whether you eat it on a daily basis or just every once in a while, a well prepared rice can either make or break a meal.
But how do you get rice made just right? Well, in most cases, in order to cook rice, one must go through four different stages.
- The first stage requires the rice to sit in water for a bit
- The second stage has the water which the rice has been sitting in brought to a boil
- The third requires some steaming so that the rice will fully absorb the water
- The final stage is resting
Though an apparent easy and simple process, going through these stages requires great supervised attention, for there are numerous ways in which one can mess up the procedure. Therefore, if you are one of the many who have a chaotic kitchen but loves to make rice, a rice cooker might be a great investment.
Though they can be traced back to as early as 1912, the first automatic rice cooker was released by Toshiba in 1955. Soon, features such a timer and a design that could keep the rice warm made it grow in popularity in Japan, and it didn’t take long before other companies started producing their own models and introducing this amazing appliances to kitchens all around the world.
Easy to use, a good rice cooker will have a non-stick bowl and thermostat control that makes it so you don’t have to think about cooking while your rice is being made. A large model can make as much as 23L of perfectly fluffy rice at a time, making it a great time saver if you want to meal prep for the week or if you’re entertaining a large party. Easy to clean, they also free up space on top of your stove, allowing you to use more pans and cook other dishes.
As mentioned above, rice is typically cooked in four different stages. A rice cooker will not cut down on the amount time required to go through these four stages, but it will simplify it, making it so all you have to do is measure the right amount of water and rice and then flip a switch.
From there, the rice cooker will gently steam in its inner cooking aluminum bowl, which is heated by a pad thanks to the use of electricity. The water boils and it is absorbed by the rice, while the lid of the unit prevents steam from escaping. Typically, inner thermal sensors monitor the temperature within the pot so that it can automatically shut off its heating system to stop the cooking process. This prevents the rice from burning.
Once ready, a rice cooker can keep the rice warm until it is time to serve.
Depending on the model you purchase, there’s a lot more that your rice cooker can do than just preparing rice; in some cases you can use it as a steamer, or use ir to make stews and soups. If you have a dog with a sensitive stomach that requires a bland diet, preparing a large quantity of rice in chicken broth can save you money at the pet store, while hardboiled eggs, frittatas, and quinoa can all also be cooked with a rice cooker. Just be sure to research your specific model to see if there are any precautions which you must undertake.
A rice cooker is a great appliance that can facilitate your cooking life; with a simple flip of a switch, you can get perfectly fluffy made rice without having to constantly check your pans to ensure that it is not burning. Models with larger capacity are perfect for those who enjoy planning their weekly meals or for those who like to entertain and must make a large dish for their guests.
Modern technology allows rice cookers to boil and steam rice without burning, while nonstick bowls make the appliance easy to clean. Depending on the model, you might even get away with using a rice cooker to cook more than just rice.
If you’re one of the millions of people who enjoys having rice on regular basis, than investing in a rice cooker might just be worth your consideration.