Rice is one of the most popular foods. It can be a main dish or an addition. However, today you don’t have to cook it the old-fashioned way because a special device has been created – a rice cooker. Read more about how rice cookers know when to stop in this article.
The principle of operation of the rice cooker
Before proceeding to the study of the question, how does a rice cooker know when to stop, you should familiarize yourself with the principle of operation of the rice cookers.
To cook rice in the rice cookers, you need to use 2 parts of water and 1 part of rice. Inside, there is a thermometer that measures the internal temperature of the ingredients.
When the rice cooker boil the water, then it turns into steam and reaches a temperature of 212 degrees Fahrenheit. After they begin to soak into the rice.
At this moment, the rice cooker automatically turns off or switches to the “heating” mode. Cooking rice is quite fast, even by hand.
However, you need to constantly monitor that it is not digested and does not burn. Often, the cereal becomes excessively soft or remains crispy. However, thanks to a rice cooker, such problems are practically eliminated.
To cook rice in a rice cooker, you must first fill a metal bowl with water. Water and uncooked rice are taken in a 2:1 ratio. After the rice cooker must be started to activate the heating element and thermostat. The bowl is made of thin aluminum, it heats up quickly and gives off heat to the ingredients.
There is a heat source inside the rice cookers that contributes to the heating of the rice bowl. The task of the thermostat is to control the heat source and control the temperature.
During cooking, the water boils. As mentioned, at 212 degrees Fahrenheit, the water turns into steam. It transfers heat through the rice.
The cereal absorbs the moisture that forms the starch. After the grain will be connected. If you add more water, a mushy consistency will form.
If you continue to heat, the cooking rice will crunch and burn. However, the rice cookers are supplemented with a thermal sensor that monitors the temperature inside the bowl.
The less water in the bowl, the faster the temperature will rise. As soon as the temperature rises to a certain level, the rice cooker will turn off because the rice is done.
When does the rice cooker turn off?
There is a thermostat inside the rice cookers. It monitors the temperature of the components. Once it is at 212 degrees Fahrenheit, the thermostat stops the unit from working. This prevents the rice from overcooking.
Some appliances have a heating element. It helps to keep cooked rice warm for up to 4 hours after cooking.
If you like to cook rice dishes, then you should get a rice cooker. This is the best solution if you are a beginner as the whole process is automated.
Cooking time for rice in a rice cooker
To cook white rice in the rice cookers, you need no more than a quarter of an hour. It takes 20 minutes to prepare basmati or jasmine.
Brown and wild rice take about 45 minutes to cook. If you add water and rice to the bowl in the right proportions, you can cook the best rice in just a quarter of an hour.
You can also add spices, vegetables, or meat. The lid should be removed only 15 minutes after the end of cooking so that the rice rests and acquires a pleasant texture. Rice cookers can be of several options: cold and pan.
The second option is more expensive but easy to use. Pans can be created in different sizes. They can fit 3-30 cups of uncooked rice. The launch is carried out with one button. The set includes a removable bowl.
You can find options that fit 4-10 cups of rice. Reading is carried out in a digital format. They are more compact and retain moisture better. A good plus would be the use of digital functions.
Determination of readiness of rice
The rice cooker notifies the user when the rice is done in several ways.
You do not have to monitor the readiness of rice yourself. As soon as the rice is done, the device automatically turns off. In this case, the rice has a pleasant texture.
Switching the stove to warm mode
As soon as the rice is done, the device switches to the “warming” mode. Therefore, you can serve warm rice even after a few hours. This removes moisture before serving.
Flashing indicator light
Some models have an indicator that lights up when the perfectly cooked rice is done. However, often the indicator is constantly on and goes out at the end of cooking. The indicator glows a little differently than the power sensor. So, you definitely can’t go wrong.
For example, often during cooking, the indicators glow green, and at the end of cooking, they change color to orange.
The exact shades depend on the manufacturer. You can find all the information in the user manual. A sound signal often replaces the indicator.
Fixing undercooked rice in a rice cooker
If your machine is undercooking the rice, you can add an extra 1/4 cup of water. Then start the rice cookers work for 3-5 minutes, and let the porridge rest for about 5 minutes. In this case, the fire must be turned off.
Before starting the rice cooker works, you should check the consistency of the rice with your fingers. This allows you to understand how much it did not finish cooking.
Reasons for burning rice
If you notice that rice often burns in the device, there is likely too much starch in the cereal. Another reason is hidden in the wrong proportions of rice and water, as well as the wrong temperature.
The cheap rice cooker has a thin inner bowl. This eliminates the possibility of adjusting the temperature.
If you would rather not spend money on new rice cookers, you should follow a few rules. Rinse the rice several times first. This reduces the amount of starch. Choose the right ratio of rice and water, and set the appropriate temperature.
Try to cook in large batches. If you add only 1 cup of rice, it is difficult for the stove to determine the temperature regime.
Efficient use of the rice cooker
A rice cooker can be used for more than just cooking rice. This is an excellent device in which you can cook other types of products.
You can take up cooking eggs, oatmeal, rice pudding, and pasta. However, you need to understand that you have to use the rice cookers correctly so that it lasts longer.
There are several tips to help you properly operate the device.
Rice washing. Using the measuring cup
Rice should be washed before cooking. This helps to wash out the starch. By the way, starch is quickly and effectively washed off with water.
Rinse the rice grains to remove the starch. This prevents the rice from being sticky. This gives you the right consistency of porridge.
Almost all modern rice cookers come with a measuring cup. Rice cookers are characterized by optimal load capacity, so you need to fill the container with the right ratio of water and rice.
If the manufacturer indicates that the device is suitable for 7 cups, then it is better to load 4-6 cups of cereal.
If you use 8 or 1 cup, then you do not achieve effective results.
Using the measuring lines on the bowl
As you know, all types of rice require a certain amount of water. However, the manufacturer has taken care of the convenience of users. Therefore, all bowls have special divisions. They are engraved, so they will last a long time.
Thanks to these divisions, it is quite easy to cook short-grain white rice, as well as certain varieties of brown rice.
Thanks to the divisions, you will know exactly how much water to pour. You don’t even have to use measuring cups.
To achieve the best results, it is recommended to follow the instructions on the packaging of rice. The older the rice, the more water it will need to add to cook.
There are a few more recommendations that are relevant during the operation of the rice cooker, namely:
- Do not keep rice warm for a very long time. After all, this will contribute to its drying or digestion.
- If cooked rice is left in a rice cooker that is turned off, harmful bacteria may develop inside.
- Turn off the rice cooker manually if you are cooking vegetables or reheating the soup. Otherwise, the rice cooker works until the water boils completely.
Optimal rice varieties
In recent years, it has become relevant to use rice varieties that contain a minimum amount of amylopectin starch.
It is important to pay attention to which of the varieties will provoke the greatest boiling. You can get acquainted with all the necessary information on the packaging of the goods when buying cereals.
Reasons for quickly switching the rice cooker to heating
Often people notice that the device quickly goes into the “heating” mode. Often this happens if the thermal sensor stops working correctly. This can be caused by several reasons, including not enough water, the lid is not closed completely, or a sensor problem.
If this happens, the rice cooking process will not be completed. Because of this, it loses its correct consistency.
If your rice cooker quickly switches to “keep warm” mode, you should check the lid. It may need to be closed tighter. You should also make sure that the sensors are working correctly.
Benefits of using a rice cooker
Using a rice cooker is a real pleasure. More details about the main advantages will be discussed below.
Lightness and convenience
Using this device is quite simple and easy. You just need to measure the required number of components and start the device. This facilitates the automatic cooking of rice. As soon as the rice is cooked, the appliance will automatically turn off. Therefore, you can be sure of its durability.
Perfectly cooked rice
After each use of the rice cooker, you have excellent-quality rice on the table. The device independently regulates the temperature regime, as well as the cooking time.
Keeping rice warm
As soon as the cooking process is completed, the rice cooker will switch to the “keep warm” mode. Thanks to this, you can serve warm rice on the table, even if several hours have passed since the end of cooking.
Rice cooks much faster in a rice cooker. If you cook it on the stove, it takes about an hour. In a rice cooker, the process will take no more than 20 minutes.
What happens if the rice cooker is turned on for a long time?
Leaving the rice cooker on for a long time increases the risk of fire. The rice cooker will continuously heat up until the maximum temperature is reached. You have to turn off the device yourself.
If the device is left on for a long time, the rice will start to burn. Because of this, smoke may begin, or even a fire. In this case, the device itself begins to overheat. Because of this, it will fail and can cause a fire.
As you know, in the process of using a rice cooker, you may encounter numerous issues.
- How does the rice cooker know when to stop cooking? The device is equipped with a thermostat. This detail determines when the temperature in the bowl rises to 212 degrees Fahrenheit and above. As soon as this happens, the rice cooker immediately turns off.
- How do you know when rice is done in a rice cooker? Almost all modern rice cookers make a small sound, or the indicator starts to glow when the rice is done. This way you will know when the rice is done.
- How does an automatic rice cooker work? When the automatic rice cooker is turned on, it heats the bowl. Heat is given off from it to water and rice. Heating continues until the water begins to boil. During the boiling process, the heat leaves along with the steam that comes out of the bowl.
- Can you open a rice cooker while it’s cooking? When the rice cooker is running and rice is being cooked, the lid cannot be opened.
As you can see, almost all rice cookers are equipped with automatic operation. They turn off as soon as the temperature inside rises to 212 degrees Fahrenheit and above. In this case, the lid must be tightly closed; otherwise, the shutdown does not occur, the rice will burn, or a fire may even occur.