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What do you make in your rice cooker?

Other than rice?

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  1. Good topic! I hope there are a lot of creative replies. I got a Zojirushi rice cooker last year and haven't cooked anything in it other than rice, but it does that so perfectly I haven't needed to branch out- yet.

    1. Does jook (congee) count as rice ?

      1. Steel-cut oatmeal. But if you cook it with cinnamon, diced apples, craisins, and brown sugar like I do, the rice cooker needs to be washed really well afterwards or the flavors will permeate the next pot or two of rice.

        1. I've steamed entire meals in my rice cooker. In addition to the rice, I also put in ceramic bowls of meat and veggies that steamed while the rice was cooking. I've also put in Chinese sausages, which gives the rice a great flavor.

          1. Oatmeal.
            Wild rice.
            Brown or green lentils.

            Quinoa should work, but I haven't tried it yet.

            I love my rice cooker.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Ferdzy

              I just tried quinoa. Works perfectly.

              1. re: mountaincachers

                How many volumes water per volume of Quinoa?

                1. re: lagatta

                  I did it exactly like rice (I would imagine this is 2:1, but I just used the measurer that came with the rice cooker). Turned out perfectly, but I think next time I will try using broth instead of water.

            2. For a convenience food dinner one night I put lentils, rice, and a jar of Trader Joe's masala simmer sauce in the cooker. Can't remember if I doctored things up at all but I remember those were the main components. Fast as lightening to put together, then just walk away.

              1. barley. rice soup. quinoa.

                1. Artichokes--use LOTS of water otherwise it boils out before the artichoke is tender.

                  Cauliflower steams nicely too.

                  Also used it to keep food warm one Thanksgiving, worked pretty well for that too.

                  1. White rice, bok choy, and chinese sausage together...mmmm.

                      1. re: lagatta

                        Great link! And I learned a great new use for the word "okoge".

                      2. Oats, various types of rice, lentils and diced potatoes. The potatoes then are used for smashed or mashed potatoes. It frees up a burner on the stove and I don't have to watch the pot.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: blackpointyboots

                          So how much water do you need for the potatoes or lentils? Does all the water get absorbed for the potatoes, or is this just a different way to boil them? Same question for vegetables, like cauliflower?

                        2. Oatmeal - 2 parts water to one part oatmeal.
                          Barley - 3 to 1
                          Wild rice - 3 to 1 (maybe 2 1/2 to 1?)
                          Brown or green lentils - 2 to 1
                          Split peas - 3 to 1 (then used to make soup; I just didn't want to have to remember to stir them during the first part of the cooking.)

                          I also remember that I cooked buckwheat kasha in the rice cooker once. I browned onions in the bottom of the rice cooker first, then added water, brought it to a boil then added the buckwheat. Buckwheat has to go into boiling water or it will be mush. But once it was in I just covered it and left it to do its thing. 2 to 1 for buckwheat.

                          I don't do vegetables in the rice cooker unless they are being added to a grain. I think it's just as easy to steam them on the stove. Most of them cook so fast anyway. I've been known to put diced root veggies in with the rice, and frozen peas sprinkled on the top of the rice about 2 minutes before you think it's going to turn off.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Ferdzy

                            I'm more interested in this in situations where there is no "the stove". On other threads we've discussed cooking in a room, emergency cooking etc.

                          2. cous cous

                            also used it for one large group dinner when I ran out of stove tops, to keep some baked bean warm.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: BernalKC

                              BernalKC - how do you make the couscous? Do you put in cold stock and coucous and then leave it on the "warm" setting? Or do you heat the stock first?

                              I have also used my rice cooker to make polenta. It worked well, no splatter.

                              1. re: jaykat

                                I start with everything at room temperature and the cooker on full (mine only has two settings). I do tend to turn it down to warm before it does it itself since the longer the cous cous steams the better.

                            2. I've been getting the CHOW newsletters for ages now, and this topic finally convinced me to sign up so I could reply. I asked for a rice cooker for the holidays. (I didn't ask for an EIGHT-CUP cooker for just the two of us, but that's what I got.) I also got a rice-cooker cookbook called "The Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook" and since I opened that first I did have a strong clue of what else might be coming. :)

                              I've always liked rice just fine and now I'm coming to love rice. I probably made more than one batch a day for the first couple of weeks (remember, there's only 2 of us, plus occasional guests). I've been looking at the recipes in the book but the only one I've tried so far was for a simple pilaf (melt butter in rice cooker bowl, stir rice into it until coated, add liquid, walk away. It was like a grown-up version of white rice with butter on it, which was a childhood food I've been rediscovering.) I've also cooked onion in the butter first which strikes me as more "standard" but I'm no expert. A couple of days ago, it was chopped shallots, chopped almonds, and some raisins in with the rice -- yum.

                              1. Last month I received several stalks from this year's final harvest of Brussel's Sprouts. While sitting in just the serendipitous position to see both the pile of stalks + the rice cooker, (which made flawless potato rounds for cheesy potatoes the night prior), I was inspired to start snapping off some sprouts and popping them into the clean cooker (Always remember to remove the lid's inner seal piece after use!).
                                A couple of minutes later I discovered: A stalk full of Brussel's Sprouts is one rice cooker full
                                I did the water level just right for a quick steaming _but_ the bottom ones were carmelized - tasty but of a displeasing appearance for the unintiated '-)
                                This I attributed to the extreme heat from the bottom of the pan and no butter, or other goodie - (To our palate they were "the very best of them all")
                                So, if ever pondering 1 stalk of fresh Brussel's Sprouts: They fit perfectly into a 12-cup rice cooker and yeild pleasing results.

                                1. I make onsen tamago ( Japanese style hot spring eggs- poached egg, but the yolk is set a little more than the white) in the rice cooker. Put the eggs in water and keep on the keep warm setting for about 2 hours. These are are great in ramen, gyudon, tofu or with dashi, soy and green onions.

                                  1. another great idea is to wash a few eggs and put them in your rice as it cooks. You will have perfect hard eggs.. can not really call them hard boiled in a rice cooker. Perfect having breakfast done for the next morning.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: lildulagirl

                                      I can still see the open-air market stall of Iguala, Guerrero, Mexico, in my mind's eye. It was there I first saw a gigantic pan of Spanish rice with perfectly nestled eggs in their shells all around the perimeter.
                                      At the time I thought it was _SO_ gauche! Who would serve an unpeeled egg with the rice? Who would serve a boiled egg with rice in the first place?
                                      But since then I've come to appreciate the specialness of timing the addition of the eggs just right and the adaptation of fanning a perfectly sliced egg over a serving of the rice (with a hint of cloves, por favor) '-)
                                      The timing of when to place the eggs in with the rice is an art unto itself. Trial & error. Lots of trial and error.
                                      My best advice: Less is more
                                      I hadn't considered rice & eggs for breakfast, but suppose they could go in once the cooker's on "warm"? After a whole night at "warm", how do they come out?
                                      (Hoping to learn from you, rather than chalk up more "trial & error" over here '-)

                                    2. Since no one has mentioned it yet: polenta.