The authors of The New Cooks' Catalogue certainly know what to look for when choosing cooking equipment. These leading culinary experts have been evaluating cooking equipment for over 25 years. The following information is what they consider important when selecting a rice cooker.
The best rice cookers turn off automatically when the rice is fully steamed but keep the rice warm until you’re ready to eat--up to 12 hours.
A rice cooker's cycle should produce finished rice in about the same time it takes to prepare on the stove.
Cooked rice is sticky, so a nonstick interior pan is best.
Measurement markings on the pan should indicate how much water to add.
Walk into many Asian homes or restaurants in the United States and you’re likely to find an automatic rice cooker at work. It is the best tool to prepare authentic Japanese sushi rice and other "glutinous" varieties, as well as standard white or brown rice.
During the last thirty years US consumption of rice has increased four-fold, and making perfect rice has become a goal for many home cooks. A rice cooker can be tremendously convenient--especially the high-end space-age-looking models that offer automated cycles for many varieties. It keeps rice at serving temperature for hours, so it makes great sense in kitchens where meals often include rice.
A good rice cooker is easy to use. Any model worth its salt turns off automatically when the rice is fully steamed and keeps it warm until you’re ready to eat. Capacities range from one to ten cups.
Cooked rice is sticky so choose a cooker with a pan liner that has a nonstick finish. Markings on the pan's interior should indicate how much water to add after you’ve measured out the rice. And it's essential to hang on to the plastic measuring cup that comes with the machine. You may find it hard to make perfect rice according to the manufacturer’s instructions without it.