I’ve written several time in this blog about how a decent quality rice cooker will free you from the daily struggle of cooking and leave you more time for you to do the things you enjoy. Having a rice cooker at home offers many benefits so, makking the investment in one is well worth it.
Most rice cookers can cook any kind of rice (long-grain, basmati, brown etc) and they are simple to use. When it comes to the mechanics of using one you shouldn’t worry about wading through manuals or spending hours watching videos as, in ost cases, it only takes a few simple steps to get perfect results.
However, in the interest of thoroughness, I thought you might find these tips on how to cook rice with a rice cooker useful.
1.0 Measure the rice
Before you do anything, decide on how much rice you want to cook. When you are decided, you can start to measure the rice. Most rice cookers come with a special cup for measurement, but if yours does not have one, then you can just use an ordinary measuring cup. Try not to use a normal coffee cup, for example, as, obviously, these are all different sizes – it should be an approved measuring cup.
You should be aware that one cup of uncooked rice will generate between 1 ½ to 3 cups of cooked rice, depending on the variety. That’s why you should always make sure to leave enough space for the expansion of the rice and to prevent the contents of the cooker from spilling over.
Most people that eat rice rinse it before cooking to get rid of possible contaminants. Do this by pouring clean water over it or holding the cup under the faucet in your kitchen and then draining the dirty water. You can repeat this step if you consider it necessary until the rice is clean and the water does not look discolored.
3.0 Measure the water
Most rice cookers on the market work with cold water. The amount of water that you add should depend on the type of the rice that you want to cook and the consistency that you want it achieve.
Some rice cookers have graduated marks on the inside of the cooking bowl to indicate the amount of water that should be added. You can also find the amount of water that is needed on the instructions on the rice packaging. Be careful not to overfill the cooker as this leads to longer cooking times and the water may boil up and overflow the vessel creating a sticky mess.
If you want, you can soak the rice in water before actually cooking it. You should do this for 30 minutes before adding it to the cooking bowl. The soaking process will make the rice stickier, so only do this if you want that consistency.
5.0 Add Flavorings
Of course, this step is optional, so you can skip it if you want the rice to have its natural flavor. However, if you decide to add flavorings, you should add them into the water before the cooking process starts. This way the rice will get to absorb the flavorings while it is cooked. Some popular additives are salt, butter, oil, cardamom and even ginger etc.
After adding everything into the cooking bowl, close the cooker’s lid and plug it into the electrical point. After this, just press the button and turn it on. When the cooking is done, some rice cookers have the option to keep the rice at a warm temperature, so that you can serve it any time.
Remember that it is important not to lift the cooker’s lid while it is working. It will turn off automatically when it is done.
Having a rice cooker at home can be a real boon and save you lots of time. If you and your family members enjoy eating rice often, then you should do some research and think about investing in a good-quality rice cooker and, as you can see from the advice above, getting great quality rice is a really simple process.