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A stainless steel rice cooker is smart appliance for the health-conscious cook, or for anybody that likes to eat rice. Rice is one of the most popular grains around the world, and for good reason; it tastes good, its inexpensive, its satisfying, and it goes well with many other foods. There are a lot of options when it comes to buying a rice cooker, so here are some things to consider as you make your purchase.
1. How big is your family? The larger your family, the larger the capacity of your rice cooker will need to be. The typical sizes range from those that hold 2 cups of rice all the way up to 20 cups. You can also get commercial stainless steel rice cookers that hold even more. If you do a lot of entertaining, and like to serve rice-based dishes, then you may need to get a cooker that has a larger capacity. Generally speaking, it is usually a good idea to get a size or two bigger than you think you will need.
2. Raw, cooked, or both? Some rice cookers are meant for raw rice; others for rice that is already cooked; and some can handle both. If you want something to cook the rice from scratch, then make sure that cooker is meant to do so. Models that use cooked rice do a great job of heating it up and you can add meat and vegetables to it and they will be nice and hot as well. A combination unit will give you the best of both worlds.
3. Do you work outside of the home? If you do, then you may want to get a rice cooker that has a timer mode on it. That way you will be able to put the rice and other ingredients in before you leave for work, set it to start at the appropriate time, and then have dinner ready right on time.
4. Are there certain features that you must have? Here are only a few of the options you can find on rice cookers: Steamer rack, warming mode, removable cooking chamber, glass lid, keep cool handles, timer, and non-stick surfaces. None of these may be technically necessary, but they are nice to have if you want them.
5. Does the material really matter? Plastics may be okay in some cases, but a stainless steel rice cooker is durable and easy to clean. This is important because it is a piece of kitchenware that will get a lot of use. It isnt the kind of thing that you want to be falling apart after a few uses. Stainless steel is a tough material, and it looks good, too.