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Do I want a rice cooker?

  • k
  • Kagey Sep 6, 2006 11:29 AM

Recent threads discussing rice have me thinking about buying a rice cooker. I'm usually very anti-gadget, particularly single-use gadgets. I did have a rice cooker long ago back in the States, so I know that they're fantastic at making perfect rice.

So first off, do any of you use a rice cooker for things other than rice? And second, do you make "perfect" rice without a rice cooker? How do you do it?

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  1. I have a rice cooker which is in the basement. I make rice in the microwave, mostly jasmine but also brown and sticky. It's a lot less mess, cooks perfectly every time and I don't have yet another appliance taking up space in the kitchen.

    3 Replies
    1. re: cheryl_h

      How do you do this? Put the rice in a bowl of water? How long to you cook for?

      1. re: sku

        For regular long-grain rice, I rinse it, then add water in a microwave-oven safe bowl. Sorry I don't measure the water/rice ratio, I've been cooking rice all my life, but whatever you normally use. For about a cup of rice it takes around 12 - 15 minutes on high. After about 10 - 12 minutes I stop the oven and fluff the rice to check on it. If it needs more cooking, it goes back in. You'll soon get the hang of times etc.

        1. re: cheryl_h

          and remember to use a container at least 2x larger than you think you need :)

    2. I was an unwashed anti-rice maker lout prior to being given one by one of my Japanese friends, preferring to microwave all my rice. Since that initial baptism, I've seen the light and use it so regularly I've gone into apopostic pennance mode.

      I do not use it for multiple purposes but my model swears it can steam broccoli, asperagus, and chicken and fish to perfection. (shrug) I'll continue dirtying up other pans for those dishes. A kitchen without multiple dirty pans after a meal-prep just seems so wrong.

      1. I have a rice cook and love it! I've also used it as a steamer as well for vegetables and it is great.

        My parents have always cooked rice with a rice cooker so that was the only way I knew how to make rice. But recently I've moved to a country where the availability of Asian products are not so prevelant. I've tried cooking rice in the microwave and on the stove top. My husband perfected the microwave rice method which requires something like 5 minutes on high and then 10 minutes(?) on medium. That producted decent but not great rice. I've also tried it on stove top. It is best with a tall, heavy pot: boil water with rice for few minutes on high and then on a very low flame for several more minutes. Then let it sit for a while in the steam. In all, it takes about 20-25 minutes total. This makes good rice.

        In all, the rice cooker is great because you don't have to fiddle around with adjusting the heat and watching the time. Just fill it up with water, press the button, and perfect rice 20 minutes later.

        1. I bought my first rice cooker at a garage sale for $3. I thought it was a stupid gadget but after using it for a while I became a total convert. It's not even so much that it makes perfect rice, it's just that you never have to think about making the rice for a meal again. The fact that you can fill it, set it, and forget about it is what makes it so great. Especially if I'm doing other dishes - like stir fry or whatever - that require last-minute preparation, having the rice ready and keeping warm all by itself, it a wonderful thing. I don't use it for anything else, but it came with a rack which supposedly can be used for steaming stuff. I should try that function someday.

          1. They're worth it--hands down.I was a hardcore skeptic but now can't live without one. It's not necessary to splurge on a hi-end Zojirushi either; a low-end Zojirushi or National works just fine.

            1. Definitely worth it. If you go to an Asian market, you should be able to find one equipped with "fuzzy logic" (their name, not mine) which can be set to cook different types of rice.

              I have one of these:
              http://www.amazon.com/Sanyo-ECJ-D55S-...

              It was recommended because it has a very thick titanium-coated insert that both retains heat and is easy to clean. I'll agree with both of those points. I've used other rice cookers with the aluminum insert, and cleaning them can be a nightmare.

              I use it quite often - it was definitely a smart purchase.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Josh

                Fuzzy logic is artificial intelligence...which is used to cook the rice to perfection. Japanese use it in many of their appliances.

                1. re: OCAnn

                  Interesting. Well it certianly does work. I've cooked many kinds of rice in mine, and it always comes out great.

              2. I have an old Hitachi that belonged to my great grandmother. She died and I inherited it. It missing one leg so I have to prop it up with a wooden spoon to make it level but that thing makes great rice! I don't feel the need to buy up to Zojirushi or National. But then again, my old Hitachi brings the spirit and good juju of my great grandma! I hope it works forever! I don't use it for anything but rice.

                1. I'm not a fan of rice cookers. I like the convenience of the timer (set before going to work etc.), but it's big and bulky and a pain to clean (my grandparents had it - it wasn't super better having it than not). I make perfect rice on an oventop. My bf swears that I make the best rice (a huge praise from someone who's lived in China for several years). I do not know the exact proportions, but it's just something I learnt from my Mom and from the years of making rice I know how to gauge how much water to put. My cooking methods also vary for different kinds of rice. Basmati and black rice, I found, need to be cooked uncovered. My basic white long-grain rice cooking technique is to bring to boil uncovered, then lower the heat to minimum (gas barely coming out) and cook covered till it's done. Ok, when I'm in a rush, I just go out and buy a pint of rice from a Chinese take-out. It's only a dollar.

                  1. I recently got rid of both my rice cooker and my microwave.

                    I can't say that I miss either, and I have so much space in my kitchen now. Defrosting things takes a little planning, but food tastes better when it's properly defrosted anyway. I snack less because I have to think about whether it's worth it to get something out of the tupperware, into a pot/pan, wait fifteen minutes, and then have to wash the tupperware, pot/pan, AND a plate. With a microwave it would have just been the tupperware. Usually I find I just reach for some fruit instead.

                    I make rice in a two quart heavy Calphalon pot. It makes beautiful rice the way everyone did it a generation ago, before rice cookers were everywhere. I add about a quarter cup more water than I would use for a rice cooker, just because more steam escapes from the pot than from a rice cooker.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: Pei

                      Don't have a microwave either - hate the taste of the food prepared/heated in it. To defrost, I usually throw the frozen meat on the bottom of my fridge in the morning, and by the time I get home from work - it's perfectly thawed: still firm, easy to cut, without being slushy.

                      1. re: Pei

                        I can imagine you felt quite liberated! I've never had a microwave myself; I just can't imagine needing something the size of a TV on my counter to defrost stuff!

                        1. re: Pei

                          Same here. I find rice cooker's cumbersome and they take up too much space. Easier to cook on the stove. But then, I don't eat rice everyday.

                          1. re: Pei

                            I used my microwave almost exclusively for rice and popcorn. It took up a huge amount of space and who knows what was happening to the food. I was going to replace it with a rice-maker, but I just went back to cooking both rice and popcorn on th stovetop. Someday, should I win the lottery, I might invest in a rice-maker.

                          2. you can get a rice cooker/steamer... not as pretty as a rice cooker, i have a tatung one that my mom gave me. you can steam vegetables, fish, make chicken soup in it. i don't have a microwave, (actually my parents just gave me one since my brother moved in but i told him this story that if use the microwave on the floor it will melt the floor and fall down the stairs so we havent used it) anyways, it works great to reheat foods so its not just a rice cooker

                            1. I use my rice cooker primarily for Asian food (that needs the rice sticky). But when cooking different rices, you want to do it the old fashion way. You have more control of the texture.

                              1. definitely love my National rice cooker. in addition to the "set it and fuhget about it" quality Nyleve mentioned, it frees up burner space on my small stovetop. and who wants to worry about rice overcooking when you have 2 or 3 other pots and pans going? think of it as a crockpot for rice.

                                i feel cleaning is easy. just sponge and rinse the bowl, clean the inner lid once a week. i find most Chinese homes have one, often times multi-featured. but a simple one button 5-cupper should do. it does need to have a lockable lid, which keeps the steam from releasing invariably. a rice cooker will also keep a batch of rice fresh (so to speak) for a day.

                                my mom also uses it to make rice porridge or will add chinese sausages or soy pork to season the a regular pot of rice.

                                1. I cook rice both in a rice cooker and on the stove top. I like having the rice cooker because it keeps my rice warm because I always cook more than I actually eat. I only use the microwave to re-heat rice. Never thought of using it to actually cook rice. What kind of vessel do you put the rice in? Is there a special bowl or something?

                                  Cleaning a rice pot isn't so hard. The few kernals that get stuck on the bottom just need a few minutes of soaking in warm water and soap.

                                  1. This is the best way to cook rice with out a rice cooker.
                                    Use a heavy pot with a tight lid. Drizzle a little olive oil in the pot and turn heat on high. My mom alwatys used bacon fat which is just delish but I don't cook as much bacon as she did)
                                    Add long grain rice and some salt to taste and toast the rice until it is lightly golden brown. Add the water or chix broth hot bring to a boil stir, cover reduce heat to very low and cook 20 mins.
                                    For 1 cup rice use 1 1/2 cups liquid.
                                    I also like to mix the rice with orzo. usually about 1/2 c orzo to one c rice.

                                    1. Please, nita... don't fix rice like this for someone who's Asian... pretty much anathema.

                                      For those of you who want authentic Asian rice .. plain white rice... to go with Asian meals.... please do get a rice cooker. Everyone in Asia has one, and they think we EuroAmericans who don't have one are just ... well, silly. "What??" my aunties said, "You cook your rice in a pot on the STOVE?? HA HA HA HA HA!"

                                      Now, if you like a variety of rice, from all the other places places in the world who decided rice was a pretty cool starch, now that the Asians invented it... don't bother. You probably won't use it much, and it will just gather dust.

                                      Sure, it can accommodate those additions... broth, onion, etc....

                                      but ... if you decide you need coconut milk and <shudder> chicken broth in your rice, save your money for a really nice whisk or KitchenAid or something. But if you love Asian food and want to be like all the cool Asians on your block, go with the rice cooker. You won't be sorry.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: k_d

                                        k_d wrote: "What??" my aunties said, "You cook your rice in a pot on the STOVE?? HA HA HA HA HA!"

                                        o_0

                                        So, um.. was rice insufferably, laughably bad all the millenia prior to the invention of the rice cooker?

                                      2. Bottom line: how often do you make rice? If often, then get one. If not, then don't. Don't think that you'll use it often once you get one, it's usually not the case.

                                        Almost all Asian households I know of (including mine), have rice cookers. It cooks perfect rice, keeps it warm, and frees up the stove. Yes, you can make perfect rice on the stove, but why bother when again, you can set it and forget it? But going back to my bottom line, Asian households eat rice a lot more often than other households, so that makes sense. It might not make sense in your household.

                                        I also find that making a small amount of rice in a microwave rice cooker doesn't yield perfect rice, IMHO. Larger amounts are better.

                                        There are plenty of non-stick rice cookers out there that are super easy to clean. When the bowl comes out completely, you are just cleaning one cooking instrument- the same number if you microwaved or cooked on a stove.

                                        Hope my two cents helps.

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: chezchristine

                                          I actually found that having a rice cooker resulted in making rice much more often. Now that I know it'll always come out good, I make rice fairly frequently. I also like that I can set it up before I leave for work, and the rice'll be ready when I get home.

                                          1. re: chezchristine

                                            I cook rice several times a week on the stove in a great clad Demeyere pan. It never burns and I have no problem turning out perfect rice of different varieties. At least half the time it's plain white Jasmine, which is delicious with the American-Asian food I have been cooking lately, and other times it is Basmati or Arborio with additions like chicken broth, Sazon Goya, saffron or parmesan. My daughter saw a rice cooker at her Asian friend's house and swears we need one. Would this gadget work for me, given my cooking habits and recipes? Obviously, if I am making paella or arroz con pollo that will go in one of my professional quality pots, but when making a fairly unadulterated side dish, how well will it work for me? I buy rice by the 15 to 25 lb bag, so it would get used often. Also, what brand would you recommend?

                                          2. Thanks for all your responses. It's so good to hear lots of different opinions. While I haven't yet made up my mind, you've all provided important points that I need to consider.

                                            I'm leaning toward buying one, I think. The stovetop space is a big issue for me--one which has certainly kept me from cooking rice many times. Will give it a bit more thought this weekend!

                                            Thanks!

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: Kagey

                                              I'm somewhat in your shoes. I have an ancient rice cooker (20+ years old) which cooks rice just fine. However, I like the newer ones out there, but can't justify spending $100 for a rice cooker I won't be using everyday. I too also hate the clutter of single-use gagdets, but this rice cooker also doubles as a steamer (which I don't use).

                                              I have made small and large amouts of Japanese rice on stovetop which came out fine. And occasionally, I'll find myself buying the frozen precooked rice which you defrost in the freezer (these come out nicely).

                                            2. I recommend a rice cooker if you are a frequent rice eater. It's great for making large quantities of rice also. I always had issues when trying to make rice for a group of people. I was given a nice one made by Panasonic by an Asian friend as a bridal shower gift. It stayed stored in my closet until I found it one day and discovered how convenient and easy it was to use and clean. The inside pot has measuring lines, and it comes with a cup to measure your rice. The rice is perfect every time, and there is absolutely no fuss and no worries about it burning. I've even added some corn to the rice and it cooks up with no problems. Mine has a non-stick interior that makes clean-up super easy. My recent low carbing days has me avoiding the cooker, but when I plan to make rice, I doin't hesitate to use it.

                                              1. We eat rice almost everyday and making it on the strove is not really a hassle. and no one ever specified (i don't think) that we were talking about asian rice.

                                                1. One rice I haven't seen mentioned in this thread is basmathi rice - does the rice cooker make fluffy basmathi rice - and how is it with brown rices - including the brown basmathi?

                                                  1. Was a great article in Cooks Magazine that described how to cook various grains, long grain rice, short grain rice, sticky rice, brown rice, wild rice, all different and trying out these recipes seemed to work wonders with each different type. Not sure a rice cooker can handle all these different types.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: EclecticEater

                                                      In my opinion, it does handle most kinds of rice. You just have to adjust the proportion of water to rice. And this might take a couple of tries before you get it right. But I've found that it does basmati or brown basmati as well as it does jasmine.

                                                      1. re: EclecticEater

                                                        I've cooked basmati, jasmine, short-grain brown, long grain brown, wild, and some exotic blends that include barley and hard wheat berries. All have come out perfect.

                                                        The only thing that I've made rice-wise that a rice cooker can't seem to replicate is Persian-style basmati rice, with the tahdig on the bottom.

                                                      2. Unless you need a large amount of rice, I'd say the fewer gadgets, the better.

                                                        I've put away my cooker when I discovered the 10 minute boil/10 minute steam method. Works for converted, basmati, jasmine, and shortgrain brown. Bulletproof.

                                                        http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

                                                        1. Rice cookers rock. One of the few kitchen gadets I wouldn't live without. That and a blender are the only things I have in the kitchen that I plug in. Not even a microwave. So simple. So good. I don't know anybody who has one and isn't a convert.

                                                          Oh, I do have a popcorn popper. Perhaps not necissary, but it does for popcorn what the rice cooker does for rice. And I love popcorn.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: fotaq

                                                            So true, appliances become bothersome unless you use them all the time. I, myself, believe in two major appliances: A kitchen aid mixer and a good food processor. It cuts down the 'busy' work. But for rice, it can be done so well without a rice cooker. Fool proof method is to use your fingers to gage the rice & water levels. It sounds a bit silly, but a friend of mine taught me this method and I've always had success. Of course rinse your rice & place in a heavy bottom pot (a heavy bottom pot will conduct, retain & disburse heat at an even rate), use your finger as a ruler to guage how much rice is in the pot (I usually stick my finger right in the center), then place your finger on top of the rice & pour water to the level the rice was at plus half. Its not an complicated or impercise as it sounds. I was skeptical until I tried it. But I must admit, that if I am cooking a lot of rice, for sushi or for a dinner party I dig out the rice cooker )it frees up a burner on the stove and I can place it out of the other prep areas).

                                                          2. In a word? - YES! We use ours at least 3 times a week. My favorite rice to use is Basmati with a close second being Jasmine.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: momcob

                                                              People have told me that I can cook other grains in a rice cooker as I would rice, including quinoa, millet, amaranth. Is that true? I'm a celiac and it would save me trouble if I could, but I have my doubts! Thanks!

                                                            2. Well, now, I certainly weigh in on the pro cooker side- we have had the Zojirushi 5-1/2-Cup Neuro Fuzzy Rice Cooker for over three years and it has changed our relationship to rice (yes, it does an excellent job with all the different kinds of rice), and we also make porridge and congee (rice gruel) and rice pudding in it. We have The Rice Cooker Cookbook that has many types of recipes in it. It can't be beat for convenience- we use it at least three times a week. Pot and microwave cooking work fine, but a cooker is just so simple plus easy to clean. But- if you get one, I suggest a quality one.

                                                              1. I have a rice cooker (National, I think, but may be Panasonic), and we eat a LOT of rice. Then again, I don't use the cooker every time I make rice, either...probably a quarter of the time I use a pot on the stovetop. True, you can't beat the rice cooker for ease of use. On the other hand, rice cooked in a pot on the stove has *soul*...nothing makes the crispy-chewy, brown, proto-burnt crust (called 'koge' in Japanese, meaning "burnt") like a pot on the stove. The rice cooker's inability to make koge is it's major failing, IMHO.

                                                                1. I had a rice cooker. I got rid of it. Stupid thing. The bottom layer of the rice was always scorched and the rest of it didn't cook evenly. I cook my rice in a pot on the stove and I don't really care if Asian people or anyone else laugh at me for it. It's easy to cook rice on the stove: twice as much water as rice, get it boiling and turn it to low, then go sit down for 20 minutes and drink a beer.

                                                                  1. As a pretty lazy cook I am amazed at the problems people have with their rice cookers. I have had two or three cheap (panasonic, hitachi) bottom of the line rice cookers. A couple were 5 cup and one was a 10 cup. No fuzzy logic, no keep warm setting. Just your basic rice cooker. I have never had any of them scorch the rice at the bottom, never had a problem cleaning them - I mean how much trouble can it be? (unless yours is one that somehow scorches the rice). I'm not sure you can register to vote in Hawaii unless you can prove ownership of a rice cooker, maybe you can. I would guess that more than 80% of households have at least one rice cooker here. I do know how to make rice on the stove, pretty good rice... but why bother? People are always talking about not wanting to heat up the house and using crock pots... why on earth would you want to boil water on a hot summer day? Toss the rice and water in the cooker and walk away. Twenty minutes later it turns itself off. Wait 10 or 15 more minutes and the rice is done to perfection. Wait an hour or more and the rice is still warm, and still perfect. What could be easier?

                                                                    1. I want to put in a vote for another group that eats rice daily: I'm hispanic and grew up eating white rice every day. Contrary to Asian households, I have never seen an automatic rice cooker in a hispanic household. Never. Nope. All cooked on the stovetop. (and coffee is cooked on the stove top too....). But I'm embarking on a new journey, looking for new horizons, breaking with tradition: I am about to chuck the pot and get a rice cooker. That's right - I agree that 1. I'm waaaay to busy to deal - I definitely want one of those w/the timer on them so I can have fresh rice when I get home! 2. i need my space on the stove 3. we eat rice EVERY day - I even heat up rice for breakfast, so it definitely won't be a waste. My question: is there a good one out there WITHOUT an aluminum inner lid??!! (I'd like to keep my brain cells, thanks...)

                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                      1. re: sparkly

                                                                        sparkly -- Please -- Tell me more about why you think the aluminum inner lid is a problem. This is the first I have heard about any concerns with the aluminum in a rice cooker, and we just purchased one with this design.
                                                                        Thanks for any information you can offer.

                                                                        1. re: liu

                                                                          Links between aluminum and dementia have been postulated, but as far as I'm aware, no causative relationship has yet been established. There's a lot of lore out there, but here's something that may shed some reliable light. Unfortunately, it's not terribly conclusive, but there you go...

                                                                          http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/iyh-vsv/prod/c...

                                                                          1. re: ricepad

                                                                            Thanks, ricepad!
                                                                            It's all interesting, but I don't know that there is enough to make me change my habits.
                                                                            The information/warning pendulum swings one way, then the other...

                                                                          2. re: liu

                                                                            Personally I'm not concerned about aluminum [I think you meant the inner pot, not the lid?], but most of the new rice cookers have a teflon-lined inner pot. So I use my old plain aluminum pot from Panasonic in my new rice cooker (Panasonic died after at least 10 years of service!)
                                                                            If you're still concerned about aluminum, there are some older postings here about a Chinese (?) type of electric rice cooker that has a stainless steel inner pot. I've never seen these.

                                                                        2. I always wanted one! Not only do I think they make rice taste sooo much better than when you cook it in a pot of boiling water, but you can always have rice cooking in the background because it doesn't take up part of the stovetop! I'd say go for it!

                                                                          1. Wow. It's fun to see people are still replying to this a year later!

                                                                            I have to admit that in the end, I didn't get one. My counter space is too limited and I just don't have room for another single-purpose gadget. I've gotten pretty good at making rice on the stove (the trick in my kitchen is to use less water than I thought I needed), so I've stuck with that. But someday when I have a big luxurious kitchen I'm getting the cooker!

                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                            1. re: Kagey

                                                                              Let me throw you another curve then. My kitchen counter is 7 feet long (and that includes the sink), so I keep the rice cooker on the shelf in the dining area.

                                                                            2. i've used this "steamer" for numerous years now and love it. produces perfect rice, but also can be used to steam veggies/fish/etc. a great item to have for not too much money.

                                                                              1. http://www.blackanddeckerappliances.c...

                                                                                1. Rice cookers are what college freshmen keep in their dorms. If you have a pot with a lid and a stovetop, you can get away without the additional plug-in appliance.

                                                                                  1. NO

                                                                                    1. Many Asian cultures cook rice in a pot with an equal ratio of liquid to rice, and put this pot (must be heavy like cast) inside a larger pot- if your Wok has a domed lid- this may work- put several inches of water in the Wok or pot- cover, Rice absorbs liquid adn then continues to steam until done. google Helen Chen's Rice Cooking U-tube-

                                                                                      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yakJY...

                                                                                      The crock she sells to go into a larger pot is a great size- I ordered it on Amazon for 27.65. fits in many pots I have. Can use as cooker, server, storage and re-heat!

                                                                                      Watch the u-tube- it will change how you make rice forever! So simple, no burn, no dryness, no mushy, no running out of water before cooked. After watching vidio, you can make shift your own with pots you already have or order the Chen model. Worked great either way!

                                                                                      I AM always the fan of stove top rather than appliances. I use a stove top waffle iron! I do have two large French Burners - and it is on a gas AGA Cooker. So stove top and ovens are everything to me. I have a stove top perculator, deep fry pan, toaster (included with AGA)- If you have large french burners, you can cook anything stove top.

                                                                                       
                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. re: mrsratfire

                                                                                        I cook rice similarly. I put rice in a glass bowl and cover it with boiling water - about 1/2" above the rice. Then I put this bowl on a trivet inside a large pot with boiling water inside. I cover the pot and boil away. There's no need to worry about time as long as you don't boil off the liquid in the big pot and risk melting it down. The rice absorbs the liquid from the glass bowl and stays warm from steam in the big pot - no risk of burning rice.

                                                                                        It's a bit of a pain to do though and sometimes I wonder if I should get a rice cooker. One question though - does the rice cooker actually steam rice or does it boil it? My method is basically steamed rice.

                                                                                      2. I make perfect rice without one. My mother learned from kitchen help when we lived in Japan. She made sure that her children knew how to cook it among other things.

                                                                                        1. I've been using rice cookers for years. The husband eats rice every day, so I made rice in the rice cooker every day. Worked great. I've had six or so different models over the years - moved countries a few times.

                                                                                          But then my rice cooker died a couple of months back. I could have bought another basic rice cooker, or a fancier rice cooker with electronics to cook soup and who knows what else in it, but then as I started thinking about it and doing some research, I ended up buying a pressure cooker instead. Not an electronic one - the old school stove top style.

                                                                                          Since I cook a relatively small amount of rice every day - it's for only one person, after all - I do the rice inside a small pot which gets put on a steamer rack in the pressure cooker with water in the pressure cooker to keep up the pressure. The rice it makes is far superior to the rice I made in a rice cooker, and that was superior to stove top. Microwave rice is, to me, just nasty - personal taste and all that.

                                                                                          I have an induction cooker (heats up very very fast), so the rice cooks for 7 minutes at pressure.

                                                                                          The bonus is that the pressure cooker is used for all sorts of other things, too. A couple of days ago, I used it for three different dishes in succession. In reality, I need another pressure cooker - a bigger one. I bought a 4 liter that I thought would be big enough, even though the husband at the time said no, no, get a bigger one. *sigh*

                                                                                          1. Yes. I have an asian family so for me yet. Electric rice cooker. No need for a rice warmer though. When it gets cold I just put it in the fridge and heat it up when I eat it.

                                                                                            1. we (2 generations) have always made rice in a heavy bottomed stainless steel pot with tight fitting lid. White rice: bring to a boil, cover, cook on simmer for 12 minutes. remove from heat (do not remove cover) let sit and steep for 12 minutes. Fluff, let sit covered for 5 more minutes. That has been perfect rice for over 25 years in our house.

                                                                                              No teflon worries, no fuzzy logic. simple.

                                                                                              1. I bought a couple different models at Bed Bath & Beyond, and returned them both. All they were were just glorified hot pots. There was a direct heating element on the bottom of them that would scorch the rice just like cooking it in a pan on the stove.

                                                                                                Then I bought an electric food steamer, and found out that they make the perfect rice - evenly cooked all the way through with no scorching at all, and they are very consistent. Once you find the doneness time that works for you, you'll get the exact same results every time.

                                                                                                1. I have a rice cooker which sits in my cupboard unused....my cast iron (Lodge) 2 qt dutch oven cooks rice perfectly. I definitely seasoned it to make the surface non-stick, even though it came 'pre-seasoned' (very very small amount of Crisco rubbed on it, then baked at 400 degrees for an hour). The tight, heavy lid is ideal for rice. Plus, you can use this little pot for other things, as well. And it is less expensive than a rice cooker.

                                                                                                  1. I have a large-capacity rice cooker. I find that if I use converted rice I can freeze it in individual portions (in plastic sandwich bags) that just need a quick zap. The grains don't smash together. So I make 14-16 portions of rice at once and I'm done for a long time.