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Some people are able to cook perfect rice on the stove, every time. Then there are those of us who have, at best, mixed results. No matter how good you are at preparing it, an electric rice cooker is an appliance that will find itself at home in any kitchen.
A unit that cooks raw rice will give you consistently good rice. That means you dont have to worry about your rice being undercooked one time, and being overcooked and sticky the next. No more guessing, no more ruined meals!
You can also get electric rice cookers that are meant for cooked rice. You put the rice in and it will heat it up evenly, and will do so in a way that minimizes the risk of burning it. These are also ideal for making rice dishes that contain vegetables and meat. Simply add the other ingredients and the rice to the cooker and you will have a tasty and easy meal that the whole family enjoys.
Its only fair to mention that cooking rice on the stove (or over an open flame of some kind) has been done for centuries. However, it is virtually impossible to get even heating because it is always warmed from the bottom, and the heat does not diffuse evenly. You should take a moment to see how an electric model heats the rice, and make sure that it does so in an even manner.
Electric rice cookers have several optional features. Choose a model that will give you the benefits that you are most interested in.
– Warming Mode: This will automatically keep your rice warm after it is done cooking.
– Glass lid: An electric rice cooker is very good at cooking rice, but sometimes you just resist the urge to check on it. The problem is that removing the lid allows steam to escape, and that can change how the rice turns out. A glass lid allows you check on your rice at any time, without having to remove the lid to do it.
– Timer: This will let you program your rice cooker to start cooking at a predetermined time.
– Keep Cool Handles: Your rice is done and you cant wait to serve ityou pick it up and start carrying it to the tableand then you realize that the handles are burning you. Splat! Now your supper is all over the floor. You can always use hot pads, or you can get an electric rice cooker that has handles that are designed to stay cool.
– Non-stick Surfaces: This will make clean up super-simple. It may not be a must for some people, but its a real time saver.
– Steamer Rack: An extra rack that goes over the cooking rice allows you to steam other foods while your rice is cooking, or at any time.