Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

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Jay Miller
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Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#1 Post by Jay Miller » November 6th, 2013, 6:42 am

Arnold was never happy with how I cooked rice and he was even worse at it than I was (he always used a rice cooker). We ordered a Zojirushi and after using it for the first time last night I'll never go back. Best and easiest rice I've ever made.

This is what happens when you date an Asian - you learn how to cook good rice no matter how long it takes :)
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#2 Post by John S » November 6th, 2013, 7:19 am

Agreed. We had a basic generic brand one for a while and while good (mainly convenient) nothing as compared to the Zojirushi. Even on the "fast" cycle it is better than any others but when left to cook normally (slow) never had rice with that texture or flavors before. I should note that the quick cook is really not that fast, maybe 30-40 mins and our is 10-15 years old and works like new.
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#3 Post by c fu » November 6th, 2013, 7:27 am

Growing up and in college all I had was the rice cooker that had a little peddle you pushed down to start it up. When I went home and my mom had one of these fancy ones I had no clue how to cook the rice. One time I thought I started the machine and came back a hour later realizing I did nothing!
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#4 Post by JKim » November 6th, 2013, 7:48 am

Zojirushi makes a fine rice cooker. Lots of bells and whistles on their high end models. We have one, but only use it when we need to make lots of rice. We use an old school pedal rice cooker that Fu described above for everyday rice. The key to making great rice is first buying the correct type of rice for the proposed usage and then the correct rice/water ratio. Some ppl soak the rice for awhile, my mom does this, I'm too lazy and usually in too much of a hurry.
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#5 Post by Jay Miller » November 6th, 2013, 7:52 am

John S wrote:Agreed. We had a basic generic brand one for a while and while good (mainly convenient) nothing as compared to the Zojirushi. Even on the "fast" cycle it is better than any others but when left to cook normally (slow) never had rice with that texture or flavors before. I should note that the quick cook is really not that fast, maybe 30-40 mins and our is 10-15 years old and works like new.
Yes, the texture was amazing. I can't get over the work:reward ratio with this machine.
Charlie Fu wrote:Growing up and in college all I had was the rice cooker that had a little peddle you pushed down to start it up. When I went home and my mom had one of these fancy ones I had no clue how to cook the rice. One time I thought I started the machine and came back a hour later realizing I did nothing!
Growing up I probably ate rice about 2-3 times a year. Until recently it wasn't something that even even occurred to me when I was cooking.
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#6 Post by Jay Miller » November 6th, 2013, 7:53 am

JKim wrote:Zojirushi makes a fine rice cooker. Lots of bells and whistles on their high end models. We have one, but only use it when we need to make lots of rice. We use an old school pedal rice cooker that Fu described above for everyday rice. The key to making great rice is first buying the correct type of rice for the proposed usage and then the correct rice/water ratio. Some ppl soak the rice for awhile, my mom does this, I'm too lazy and usually in too much of a hurry.
We just have a 3 cup model. But I am overjoyed with the quality and ease of use.


But here's a question for everyone - how long can the rice sit in Keep Warm mode before flavor and /or texture degrade?
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#7 Post by JKim » November 6th, 2013, 8:09 am

Good question. My mom leaves it in keep warm mode for days. I never do that. I make rice for immediate consumption and whatever I have left goes into the fridge to be made into fried rice by my wife at a later point.
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#8 Post by c fu » November 6th, 2013, 8:30 am

JKim wrote:Good question. My mom leaves it in keep warm mode for days. I never do that. I make rice for immediate consumption and whatever I have left goes into the fridge to be made into fried rice by my wife at a later point.
Note to self. Find a rice cooker for Saturday. I'm a bad Asian. No rice cooker at home :x
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#9 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » November 6th, 2013, 9:03 am

FWIW, rice cookers (I only have had the "paddle" type, too) cook grits and quinoa really well, too...

I've never been a big fan of rice vis a vis other starches (pretty boring without lots of help), but always had terrible results before getting a rice cooker.

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#10 Post by Mel Hill » November 6th, 2013, 9:05 am

we pretty much only cook whole grains so how do the "smart" rice cookers do with brown rice? And, other whole grains like faro?

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#11 Post by Peter Kleban » November 6th, 2013, 9:06 am

Charlie Fu wrote:
JKim wrote:Good question. My mom leaves it in keep warm mode for days. I never do that. I make rice for immediate consumption and whatever I have left goes into the fridge to be made into fried rice by my wife at a later point.
Note to self. Find a rice cooker for Saturday. I'm a bad Asian. No rice cooker at home :x
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#12 Post by c fu » November 6th, 2013, 9:15 am

Mel Hill wrote:we pretty much only cook whole grains so how do the "smart" rice cookers do with brown rice? And, other whole grains like faro?
They do brown rice well. They typically have a setting for brown rice
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#13 Post by Poppy Davis » November 6th, 2013, 10:04 am

I cook brown rice and quinoa in mine all the time and they turn out perfectly.
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#14 Post by jdietz » November 6th, 2013, 11:15 am

How hard is it to cook rice? 2 cups of rice in the pot. 3 cups of water. Add some salt and butter. Let it reach a boil. Turn down the heat and put the lid. Let it simmer til you see no water (I have a glass lid) and don't open the pot. Turn the heat off. Let it sit 15 mins. Fluff, add more butter. Eat.
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#15 Post by Mark Y » November 6th, 2013, 11:20 am

jdietz wrote:How hard is it to cook rice? 2 cups of rice in the pot. 3 cups of water. Add some salt and butter. Let it reach a boil. Turn down the heat and put the lid. Let it simmer til you see no water (I have a glass lid) and don't open the pot. Turn the heat off. Let it sit 15 mins. Fluff, add more butter. Eat.
1. rice cooker doesn't need sodium or butter.. (not sure a pot does too probably more for taste?)

2. in your method you have to be there to watch the rice cook.. vs rice cooker = set, forget, move on to making other things.

3. Even with all that attention, most times a Zoji will simply out perform a pot.


We use a paddle type for rice most days.. the rice quality makes a huge difference too.. we do have a 6 cup Zoji that we use if we need more than 2 cups at a time.. takes longer, but the result is exceptional.
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#16 Post by jdietz » November 6th, 2013, 11:49 am

markye wrote:
jdietz wrote:How hard is it to cook rice? 2 cups of rice in the pot. 3 cups of water. Add some salt and butter. Let it reach a boil. Turn down the heat and put the lid. Let it simmer til you see no water (I have a glass lid) and don't open the pot. Turn the heat off. Let it sit 15 mins. Fluff, add more butter. Eat.
1. rice cooker doesn't need sodium or butter.. (not sure a pot does too probably more for taste?)

2. in your method you have to be there to watch the rice cook.. vs rice cooker = set, forget, move on to making other things.

3. Even with all that attention, most times a Zoji will simply out perform a pot.


We use a paddle type for rice most days.. the rice quality makes a huge difference too.. we do have a 6 cup Zoji that we use if we need more than 2 cups at a time.. takes longer, but the result is exceptional.
Yes, the butter and salt are for taste. And I get the need to be watching. But so many other food threads or discussions about how to make coffee are so labor intensive, with all the attention to detail that so many folks here have (I won't call it obsessive compulsive), that it just strikes me as funny using rice cookers.

I've never used one, so maybe I would be a convert if I had one, but we have so many tools and gadgets that it also is a space issue. And since we probably make rice 2-3 times a week, I guess I'm on auto pilot cooking it along with whatever else is on the stove top. N
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#17 Post by Adam Noble » November 6th, 2013, 12:51 pm

I have the aroma one from Costco-cheaper than the zor..., and it works great. Also, allows us to set it up in the morning on delay and get home from work with the rice done. Which I love.

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#18 Post by Jay Miller » November 7th, 2013, 6:38 am

jdietz wrote:
markye wrote: Yes, the butter and salt are for taste. And I get the need to be watching. But so many other food threads or discussions about how to make coffee are so labor intensive, with all the attention to detail that so many folks here have (I won't call it obsessive compulsive), that it just strikes me as funny using rice cookers.

I've never used one, so maybe I would be a convert if I had one, but we have so many tools and gadgets that it also is a space issue. And since we probably make rice 2-3 times a week, I guess I'm on auto pilot cooking it along with whatever else is on the stove top. N
I'm willing to do the obsessive compulsive time consuming thing on occasion if it results in a better product. But if I can get better results with less work then sign me up.

I'll admit I took some convincing as I didn't see why I needed a new device when a pot would work just as well. But at least at my level of rice cooking skill it doesn't.

It's the same reason I haven't cooked cheesecake in years ever since I discovered that by spending a lot of time and effort it only cost a little more in ingredients than the equally good cheesecake I could get at the Italian bakery a few blocks away.
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#19 Post by e chin » November 7th, 2013, 10:58 am

I love the convenience of using a rice cooker, but given time I prefer using a pot. Reason being is my family loves to make the rice that is stuck on the pot crispy. We add a little salt or furikake on top and instant treat. As a kid another way we would use the crispy rice is while still in the pot is to add hot water. I can’t remember the taste, but growing up I loved it. And if we had any fermented bean curd to add to it…. Yummy.
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#20 Post by Corey N. » November 7th, 2013, 11:05 am

e chin wrote:I love the convenience of using a rice cooker, but given time I prefer using a pot. Reason being is my family loves to make the rice that is stuck on the pot crispy. We add a little salt or furikake on top and instant treat. As a kid another way we would use the crispy rice is while still in the pot is to add hot water. I can’t remember the taste, but growing up I loved it. And if we had any fermented bean curd to add to it…. Yummy.
I love that crisp rice on the bottom. A Filipino neighbor said that in his house it was called "tu-tong" (sp?). IAlso, when we were in college, my Korean ex's parents would send her a bag of the crisp rice that she could add water to for a snack.
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#21 Post by Richard Lamb » November 7th, 2013, 11:37 am

Until I started going with a Chinese gal, I hardly ever cooked rice. First thing she made me do was go out and get a cheap rice cooker. Worked great for regular white rice, but I could never seem to get the thing "tuned" to make brown rice. A couple of years later, on a wine induced, spendthrift whim, I ordered a Zojirushi induction unit at about 10X the price of my cheap rice cooker. So far, after almost 10 years, probably the most perfect device I have ever owned for the kitchen. It makes rice perfectly, every time. White rice, brown rice, and it makes GABA brown rice that has become one of my go to starches. Did I mention it does it perfectly, every time! It also has a timer that allows you to set the time you want the rice to be done, not when you want it started.

The induction unit also allows you to keep the rice warm for a long time. I can't tell the difference over the first 6 hours on keep warm. After that it starts to show some drying, but is OK to my taste for 24 hours for white rice, and 48 hours for brown rice. After that it needs to be "helped out" with some sort of addition. GABA brown rice at 60 hours is still "doable" if you add some stir fry to it.

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#22 Post by Jay Miller » November 7th, 2013, 12:18 pm

e chin wrote:I love the convenience of using a rice cooker, but given time I prefer using a pot. Reason being is my family loves to make the rice that is stuck on the pot crispy. We add a little salt or furikake on top and instant treat. As a kid another way we would use the crispy rice is while still in the pot is to add hot water. I can’t remember the taste, but growing up I loved it. And if we had any fermented bean curd to add to it…. Yummy.
That's what fried rice is for :)
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#23 Post by Brent C l a y t o n » November 7th, 2013, 1:22 pm

markye wrote: 1. rice cooker doesn't need sodium or butter.. (not sure a pot does too probably more for taste?)
2. in your method you have to be there to watch the rice cook.. vs rice cooker = set, forget, move on to making other things.
+1. I love just dropping the rice in and forgetting about it. I have a cheap cooker as Charlie describes, I get a bit of sticky browning on the bottom but the rice on top is fine. I try to stir it a few times to avoid this but some on the bottom always seems to brown up. Also, instead of adding butter & salt I usually add some saffron.
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#24 Post by TimF » November 7th, 2013, 3:51 pm

jdietz wrote:How hard is it to cook rice? 2 cups of rice in the pot. 3 cups of water. Add some salt and butter. Let it reach a boil. Turn down the heat and put the lid. Let it simmer til you see no water (I have a glass lid) and don't open the pot. Turn the heat off. Let it sit 15 mins. Fluff, add more butter. Eat.
I'm in this camp.

Do you guys with rice cookers also have one of these? neener

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#25 Post by TimF » November 7th, 2013, 4:00 pm

This thread reminded me of one of the funniest episodes of I Love Lucy. It's much better known for Lucy working at the chocolate factory but Ricky's attempt at making rice is just as funny.

Forward to 0:25 or so...
[youtube][/youtube]
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#26 Post by Douglas Breen » November 7th, 2013, 5:27 pm

After reading about them, I am asking for a zojirushi for Christmas. The idea of a timer to turn it on automatically is awesome. I hope it does better for long grained brown rice and quinoa too.

Particularly, people in reviews talk about setting the timer for steel cut oatmeal for breakfast. Slow cooked oatmeal ready when you wake up sounds amazing!

Anyone else have experience using the higher end zojirushi for oatmeal with the timer?

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#27 Post by TimF » November 7th, 2013, 5:35 pm

Douglas Breen wrote:After reading about them, I am asking for a zojirushi for Christmas. The idea of a timer to turn it on automatically is awesome. I hope it does better for long grained brown rice and quinoa too.

Particularly, people in reviews talk about setting the timer for steel cut oatmeal for breakfast. Slow cooked oatmeal ready when you wake up sounds amazing!

Anyone else have experience using the higher end zojirushi for oatmeal with the timer?
I do this with my crock pot. It is very tasty.
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#28 Post by Stu Fishler » November 8th, 2013, 9:25 am

I just reviewed the one-star Amazon reviews on the 3 cup Zorirushi: quite harsh...teflon flaking off being the main issue, but also the fact that their definitionn of "3 cup" meaning the enclosed smaller Zori cup, which is smaller than US measurements. These and some other thoughts (rice paddle made of PBA) have steered me away from Zori's in quest of a stainless steel rice cooker.
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#29 Post by Jay Miller » November 8th, 2013, 2:00 pm

Stu Fishler wrote:I just reviewed the one-star Amazon reviews on the 3 cup Zorirushi: quite harsh...teflon flaking off being the main issue, but also the fact that their definitionn of "3 cup" meaning the enclosed smaller Zori cup, which is smaller than US measurements. These and some other thoughts (rice paddle made of PBA) have steered me away from Zori's in quest of a stainless steel rice cooker.
Some of those 14 1 star reviews (as opposed to the 501 5 star reviews) sound a bit crazy. "Teflon causes cancer!" "I can't figure out how to work it"(you put water and rice in the bowl and press the on button). Even the rice spoon being made of PBA doesn't strike me as an issue as all the studies have been regarding bottles where the liquid is in touch with it for a long period of time as opposed to a few seconds.

The potentially misleading 3 cup size is a legitimate issue if what you want is to end up with 6 cups of cooked rice. I find it perfect for 2 people but if you want more rice you should buy a larger size.
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#30 Post by Douglas Breen » November 8th, 2013, 4:37 pm

TimF wrote:
Douglas Breen wrote:After reading about them, I am asking for a zojirushi for Christmas. The idea of a timer to turn it on automatically is awesome. I hope it does better for long grained brown rice and quinoa too.

Particularly, people in reviews talk about setting the timer for steel cut oatmeal for breakfast. Slow cooked oatmeal ready when you wake up sounds amazing!

Anyone else have experience using the higher end zojirushi for oatmeal with the timer?
I do this with my crock pot. It is very tasty.
Thanks! That does it. I am very excited for Santa to come!

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#31 Post by gene keenan » November 12th, 2013, 10:12 am

jdietz wrote:How hard is it to cook rice? 2 cups of rice in the pot. 3 cups of water. Add some salt and butter. Let it reach a boil. Turn down the heat and put the lid. Let it simmer til you see no water (I have a glass lid) and don't open the pot. Turn the heat off. Let it sit 15 mins. Fluff, add more butter. Eat.
Yeah, I threw out the rice cooker years ago. It's insanely easy to make perfect rice in a pot once you learn how. For me an all-clad with a lid does the trick. I don't add salt or butter though.
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#32 Post by Russell Faulkner » November 12th, 2013, 10:17 am

We have a dirt cheap tefal now, very happy with it. Frees up hob space and timing is much less of an issue.

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#33 Post by gene keenan » November 12th, 2013, 10:50 am

These look useful [tease.gif]
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#34 Post by Jay Miller » November 15th, 2013, 1:15 pm

Not very happy with the texture of oatmeal (Quaker rolled oats) made in the Zojirushi. A little too gluey for me. Arnold liked it though.

Still loving the rice.
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#35 Post by TimF » November 15th, 2013, 6:19 pm

Jay Miller wrote:Not very happy with the texture of oatmeal (Quaker rolled oats) made in the Zojirushi. A little too gluey for me. Arnold liked it though.

Still loving the rice.
You might want to try steel cut.
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#36 Post by Linda Baehr » November 15th, 2013, 6:43 pm

I can cook rice in a pot, but why would I want to? I love my rice cooker. flirtysmile
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#37 Post by Marc Yamawaki » November 15th, 2013, 11:11 pm

TIP: if you want to save leftover rice for future use, you can always freeze it in plastic wrap and nuke it when you're either too lazy to cook a pot or don't have enough time to cook a pot.

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#38 Post by Mark A » November 16th, 2013, 4:36 am

What model of the Zojirushi are you guys using?
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#39 Post by Richard Lamb » November 17th, 2013, 6:09 am

Zojirushi NP-HBC18 10-Cup induction model. The smaller one, at 5.5 cups, didn't seem to offer smaller minimum quantities than it's big brother. I only make more than 2 cups of rice about once a year, but they turn out as perfect as 1 cup.

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#40 Post by Jay Miller » November 18th, 2013, 2:30 pm

NP-GBC05 3 Cup Induction. Small footprint and if an appliance can be described as cute this one is.

I'll have to pick up some steel cut oats soon to give those a try.
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#41 Post by e chin » November 18th, 2013, 2:51 pm

Linda Baehr wrote:I can cook rice in a pot, but why would I want to? I love my rice cooker. flirtysmile
Obviously you didn't see my post above [shock.gif]
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Mark A
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Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#42 Post by Mark A » November 18th, 2013, 3:03 pm

Jay Miller wrote:NP-GBC05 3 Cup Induction. Small footprint and if an appliance can be described as cute this one is.

I'll have to pick up some steel cut oats soon to give those a try.
That is the one I'm looking at. I understand you to say you really like it? Thanks for this thread.
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Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#43 Post by Linda Baehr » November 18th, 2013, 5:28 pm

e chin wrote:
Linda Baehr wrote:I can cook rice in a pot, but why would I want to? I love my rice cooker. flirtysmile
Obviously you didn't see my post above [shock.gif]

Well, that wasn't a childhood thing for me. I get it, though.
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Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#44 Post by Jay Miller » November 19th, 2013, 7:35 am

Mark Alcorn wrote:
Jay Miller wrote:NP-GBC05 3 Cup Induction. Small footprint and if an appliance can be described as cute this one is.

I'll have to pick up some steel cut oats soon to give those a try.
That is the one I'm looking at. I understand you to say you really like it? Thanks for this thread.
Assuming you need rice for 2-3 people it's perfect. For 2 you have just enough left to make some fried rice later in the week.

So far I've only used it for jasmine white rice (perfect) and rolled oat oatmeal (eh).
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Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#45 Post by Mark A » November 23rd, 2013, 4:25 am

In this thread somebody (I didn't take the time to look) mentioned one model didn't seem to offer a minimum quantity cooked. That was a concern I had so I emailed the Zojirushi and below is there response as to what models have have as there minimum quantity:
Minimum Amount of White Rice you can cook;

NS-XBC05: 0.5 CUP
NS-XAC05: 0.5 CUP
NS-XBC05: 0.5 CUP
NS-VGC05: 0.5 CUP
NS-LAC05: 0.5 CUP
NS-GBC05: 0.5 CUP

NP-KAC10: 0.5 CUP
NP-HBC10: 0.5 CUP
NP-HTC10: 0.5 CUP
NS-WAC10: 1 CUP
NS-WPC10: 1 CUP
NS-DAC10: 1 CUP
NS-TGC10: 1 CUP
NS-ZCC10: 1 CUP
NS-YAC10: 1 CUP

NS-WAC18: 2 CUPS
NS-TGC18: 2 CUPS
NS-ZCC18: 2 CUPS
NS-YAC18: 1 CUP
NP-KAC18: 1 CUP
NP-HBC18: 1 CUP
NP-HTC18: 1 CUP
M. A l c o r n

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Re: Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#46 Post by Chris Blum » June 15th, 2020, 1:29 pm

After working like a charm for a few years, My Zojirushi 10cup suddenly started making gooey gelatinous rice while set to WHITE NORMAL. I switched to a different rice, I cleaned the seals, I even cut back on water. I’m doing my typical 2C portion so it’s not that.

Thoughts?
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Re: Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#47 Post by Victor Hong » June 15th, 2020, 3:36 pm

Chris Blum wrote:
June 15th, 2020, 1:29 pm
After working like a charm for a few years, My Zojirushi 10cup suddenly started making gooey gelatinous rice while set to WHITE NORMAL. I switched to a different rice, I cleaned the seals, I even cut back on water. I’m doing my typical 2C portion so it’s not that.

Thoughts?
Sounds like a good start for juk.
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Re: Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#48 Post by Sarah Kirschbaum » June 15th, 2020, 5:14 pm

Chris Blum wrote:
June 15th, 2020, 1:29 pm
After working like a charm for a few years, My Zojirushi 10cup suddenly started making gooey gelatinous rice while set to WHITE NORMAL. I switched to a different rice, I cleaned the seals, I even cut back on water. I’m doing my typical 2C portion so it’s not that.

Thoughts?
Did you clean the vent? Insufficient airflow is the only thing I can think of.
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Re: Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#49 Post by Chris Blum » June 15th, 2020, 5:57 pm

I’ll try it, thx
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Re: Used a rice cooker for the first time last night

#50 Post by DavidFrankil » June 15th, 2020, 11:35 pm

Agree on the Zojirushi - wife was a skeptic but now won’t make rice any other way. Pour in the ingredients, hit a button, walk away - come back when it makes a noise and it’s perfect, every time.

Love the timer for steel cut oatmeal - add oatmeal, water, pinch of salt, cinnamon and two Small Trader Joe’s mixed nuts and raisin snack packs before you go to sleep. Set timer for one hour before breakfast and wake up to perfectly cooked hot oatmeal. The overnight soak and slow cooking infuses the raisin flavor throughout, needs no or minimal additional sweeteners. Apple or banana chunks work too.
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