The GF community eats a lot of rice, and we’re pretty fussy about how it is cooked! After we got over the initial gluten-free shock of realizing how much rice we would be about to consume, we didn’t mind spending more money on a newer and better rice cooker than the cheap one we had purchased in 1990. That old one was a standard no-frills rice cooker with an aluminum insert. It cooked rice, but the rice was never quite right, and the bottom rice was always a little browned…..but it was fine for us when we could choose to eat rice! Now that we have to eat rice a lot, we have become real rice snobs!
Enter the Zojirushi rice cookers. We figured that if the thing is made by people who eat a lot of rice, it will probably be good.
The Zojirushi fuzzy-logic rice cookers make the GF life-style a breeze! Jasmine rice gets a good soaking and comes out perfect every time. Brown rice comes out cooked just right, not like a bowl of tiny stones. The interesting setting “porridge” seems to be for a type of porridge unfamiliar in the west, perhaps a congee style of porridge.
A few pointers: There are a couple of different measuring devices that come with the Zojirushi rice cookers – one is green, and one is clear. It is important to follow the advice in the cooking manual and use the clear one for standard white rice. Also, when the cooker says it makes “5 cups” that refers to the number of their little measuring cups of dry rice. So if you fill the clear cup 3 times with dry jasmine rice, and fill the water up to the line on the cooking pot that says 3 for white rice, then you will get “3 servings” of cooked rice a the end of about an hour. This is the correct serving size for people who eat lots of rice, but will be more than the right amount for people who typically don’t eat rice as a staple food.
It takes a little longer to make rice in one of these rice cookers – the typical elapsed time before the rice is done for dinner is about an hour for most white rices. Brown rice takes longer. Stove top rice cooking takes less than a half hour for white rice, but that is because there is no soaking cycle. The Zojirushi adds a soaking cycle, which is why the rice is so delicious! We usually put the rice on to cook before starting to make the rest of the dinner, that is unless there is pie for dessert. If there is going to be pie for dessert, we start that first, pop it in the oven, then put on the rice and get going on the vegies and other good things!
It is important not to try to cook rice in coconut milk in one of these rice cookers because a lava flow of coconut milk comes spewing out the steam vent and flows down the sides of the rice cooker onto the counter top. Likewise, it is important not to add raisins and things like that which would clog up the steam vents. Stick to cooking rice, that is the best thing, and put the add-ins in separately.
It is possible to cook quick-cooking gluten free rice mixes in a rice cooker. It takes a little longer than on the stove-top, but the rice comes out nice. We used the “quick cooking” setting.
See more information at this posting: Basmati Rice in the Zojirushi Fuzzy Logic Rice Cooker0