What’s the deal with my rice cooker?

Speaking of cooking problems, my new rice cooker is cooking up some of the crappiest rice I’ve had in a long time. I mean, the whole premise behind even getting a rice cooker was to make some of that delectable sticky rice that routinely emerges from the machines of my friends and TV personalities.

Well, guess what? I’ve now used this thing six times and I have yet to see even two grains of rice stick together. It has had the complete opposite effect that I was anticipating: the machine rice is dry, undercooked and each grain slides away from the other like they were magnetized metal shavings.

Again, I ask: what am I doing wrong here?

I’ve tried adding more and more water each time, but I only see incremental improvements. Could the problem simply be that I’m using the wrong kind of rice? Does Uncle Ben make his long-grain rice impervious to the effects of automatic rice cooking?

Maybe I’ve deluded myself into thinking a rice cooker (that someone shelled out good money for at my wedding) should be able to take any kind of rice and transform it into something light, fluffy and moist.

But I guess cooking perfect rice is just a little too much to ask of a rice cooker.

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8 responses to “What’s the deal with my rice cooker?

  1. Sorry to hear about your failed efforts to make sticky rice. In reading one of your posts, you mention using Uncle Ben’s rice and a KRUPS rice cooker. This would be the worse possible combination for cooking up a batch of the fantastic sticky rice balls.

    You need to use a glutenous, sticky, sweet rice and preferably a sticky rice steaming pot and basket.

    I assure you that your KRUPS steam cooker wedding gift works well at what it does but a mere $10 investment can get you a complete sticky rice kit at Amazon.com or any local specialty shop. The internet offers many sizes to choose from and all at a very low price.

    One example would be the one I found here for $10.00 US

    It comes complete with steaming pot and basket!

    http://www.amazon.com/Sticky-rice-steaming-pot-basket/dp/B00019MRRE/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=home-garden&qid=1222628770&sr=8-2

    Receiving great reviews is the Diamond Brand. The basket is imported and hand woven from natural reeds in Thailand. They do last years if properly cared for.

    By the way, Uncle Ben’s rice is an instant variety that no serious rice consumer would tolerate. You do appreciate great sticky rice, expect better, good for you, and will have it soon given the right tools and rice.

    Give it a try and enjoy the results right at home.

    Cheers!

    Randy S.

    http://www.lovethatkimchi.com

    http://lovethatkimchi.wordpress.com/

  2. Wow, thanks for the helpful comments, Randy. I knew the Uncle Ben’s would be somehow to blame, but I’ll have to look into this basket technology.

    I will not quit until my rice is sticky.

  3. Good grief, different kinds of rice takes different kinds of cooking methods.

    If you use long grain Jasmine rice or Basmati rice, expect fluffy separate rice grains that goes very well with thick sauces and gravies. Your rice cooker is perfect for cooking rice like this.

    Sticky rice can be made with pearl rice (kind of like wat u get at Japanese restaurants). Buy the right kind and it cooks in your rice cooker as well.

    For very dense and sticky rice like in a Thai desert, use glutinous rice. Soak the rice overnight until it is expanded, then steam it covered over hot boiling water for about 30 minutes. (with lots of steam) It will give you rice sticky enough to put a picture on a wall.

  4. We are waiting for your next visit to serve the rest of the not-so-white wine. It certainly qualifies as a collector’s vintage!!!

  5. most rice cookers can in fact cook any kind and type of rice. The only variations are amount of water and the rice. If you want plain unflavored rice that is sticky you need to get plain long grain rice. I get it cheaply at my local grocer. No fancy brand needed. If you want sticky rice as traditionally made for sushi then you need to use regular long grain rice cooked in the normal ratio 1 part rice to 2 parts water and add rice vinegar or mirin to to the water. Viola sticky sushi rice. Blame not the cooker for blame falls to the rice. ( ps I have not heard good things about Uncle Bens. I believe their rice goes through a special process that prevents sticking together )

  6. Thanks for the all the advice, everybody! Except for Dad; you put your comment on the wrong article. 🙂

    I experimented with the usual 2-1 ratio the other day and I’m pleased to report that it worked. The rice was finally sticky. I can’t figure out why the instructions would have you put in less water than that.

    I guess there are actually people out there that like their rice a little more “al dente.”

  7. Hello am Larry Miller,
    Am actually interested in Rice cooker Helmet and i will be very happy to hear a fast reply from you if u have it in stock. Reply me with pictures of samples,sizes as well as prices of those u do have in stock and hope to hear from you soon.
    Best Regards
    Larry.

  8. I’ve learn several good stuff here. Certainly price bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how so much attempt you put to create such a wonderful informative site.

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