Save time an effort with an electric rice cooker
Rice is a staple food in many countries around the world, but it can be time-consuming to cook and notoriously difficult to get just right. An electric rice cooker offers solutions to both of these issues, creating perfect rice in just a fraction of the time. Rice cookers are also more versatile than their name suggests; in addition to rice, many models are also capable of making hot cereal, steamed veggies and even stew or homemade soup, if the basin is large enough. However, if you intend to use the appliance for more than just cooking rice, it's important to read the manufacturer's instructions and understand which applications the rice cooker is intended for.
Rice Cooker Features
Most rice cookers measure the capacities of their basins by cups, but you need to be aware that there is some global variation in cup sizes. In Japan, a cup is 200 milliliters, while it is 240 milliliters in the United States. This is something you should keep in mind if you're sourcing an electric rice cooker online from a Japanese manufacturer or distributor.
A rice cooker should automatically shut off when the rice is finished cooking, but some also offer a "keep warm" feature that keeps the rice at a nice temperature while you prepare other dishes. Some electric rice cookers are capable of maintaining the temperature of the rice for as much as 12 hours, while others can only maintain temperature for an hour or two.
Non-stick pans are a very useful feature, as they'll speed up cleaning and extend the life of your rice cooker. If you want to make steamed veggies in the cooker, look for models that have additional steaming baskets that rest atop the rice basin.
In addition to the electric rice cooker, which rests on kitchen countertops or stovetops, you can also get a microwave rice cooker which is safe to use in your microwave oven. These rice cookers save you even more time, drawing on the quick cooking power of the microwave to make perfect rice in minutes.
If you're planning to use the appliance on a regular basis, investing in a stainless steel rice cooker is worthwhile. These products offer better durability and easier cleaning, as they're dishwasher safe.