I don't have much luck cooking rice on the stove so I usually avoid recipes that involve rice. I've been meaning to get a rice cooker for some time. One day I go tired of limiting my possibilities and just ran to the grocery store and picked up the Aroma 7-cup rice cooker. Since we hardly ever use rice I figured a small pot like this one would be sufficient and it is. I am confident that our family will never eat more than 7 cups of rice in one sitting.
Rice cooker, non-stick inner pot, steam basket, lid, measuring cup, rice spoon and Chef Martin Yan's favorite recipes.
How to use rice cooker
This is so simple to use and requires less effort than cooking rice on the stove. You can cook all different types of rice such as long grain, short grain, brown or wild rice.
The instructions recommend soaking the rice for 10-20 minutes then drain for softer rice. This removes the starch however may remove some nutrients. I usually soak mine for 5 minutes.
Add the appropriate amount of rice based on how much rice your cooking. 1 cup rice equals 1-1/2 cups of water. 2 cups of rice equals 2 ½ cups of water.
There is a water line on the pot to make it even easier to remember. If making one cup of rice, fill to line one. If making two cups of rice fill to line two.
Water measurements are just a guide. Some types of rices may require more water.
Cover with the provided lid and press the cook button. The lid is vented. Once the pot is started there is nothing left to do. When the rice is done it automatically shuts to warm. I turn it off at that point and let it sit for for the recommended 5-10 minutes. It stays warm so there's no need to have the appliance warm it.
How to Steam
The steamer can not be used at the same time that rice is cooking.
To use the steamer, put water in the inner pot. Add the vegetables to the vegetable basket and place on top of the inner pot. Cover with the provided lid and press cook. The steamer will automatically switch to warm when it's done. Remove from the warmer to avoid over cooking.
We don't eat a lot of fresh vegetables in the winter so I haven't tried the steam feature much. I have put frozen vegetables in and was amazed at how tender they were.
Approximate times for steaming:
Asparagus - 1/2 cup - 10 minutes
Broccoli - 1/4 cup - 5 minutes
Cabbage - 1 cup - 15 minutes
Carrots - 1 cup - 15 minutes
Cauliflower - 1 cup - 15 minutes
Corn - 1 cup - 15 minutes
Eggplant - 1-1/4 cup - 20 minutes
Green beans - 1 cup - 15 minutes
Peas - 1/2 cup - 10 minutes
Spinach - 1/2 cup - 10 minutes
Squash - 1/2 cup - 10 minutes
Zucchini - 1/2 cup - 10 minutes
A recipe book is included with the following recipes: Mu Shu Chicken, Spicy Kung Poa Fish, Stir-fried Seasonal Vegetables, Curried Seafood Combo, Minced Seafood in Lettuce Cups, Crispy Seafood Wraps, Steamed Cabbage Pillows, Eight Treasure Rice Pudding, Fruit-filled Spring Rolls, Chicken Noodle Soup, Meatball Minestrone, Curry Chicken, Cowboy Chili, Vegetable and Ham Soup, Three Flavored Dumplings
I don't really cook so I haven't attempted any of these.
This is not dishwasher safe. The inner pot can be removed and hand washed with warm water. There is a non-stick coating on the pan for easy clean up. Avoid abrasive cleaners.
The bottom of the inner bowl should be dried thoroughly before placing back into the cooker as as water could damage the appliance.
What I like
I love how this appliances frees up a burner on the stove.
I simply can not make rice on the stove. It either comes out sticky or crunchy. This appliance has produced lovely fluffy perfect rice every time.
I like the added benefit of steaming vegetables too. Steaming is a healthy choice and I think makes a better presentation on the plate than cooked vegetables do.
This is one of the least expensive rice cookers. It is only around $20. A deluxe rice cooker can cost around $100.
This is one of my smallest appliances. The appliance, pans and lid stack easily which makes for easy storage.
What I don't like
This is cheaply made. The handles are very short and tiny. It is nearly impossible to grab hold of the handles. I've burned myself numerous times trying to get the food out of the bowls.
There is no ringer or alarm to let you know when the rice is done nor is there a timer to let you know how close you are to being finished.
There is no gage to adjust the temperature.
I have tried Bastami, Jasmine, and short grain rice. The rice cooker has made a perfect pot for me every time which sure beats my odds. I really wish the handles were more functional. I really don't miss the added bells and whistles. After all, it's just rice.
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Amount Paid (US$): 20.00