“ Asda. „
I received this Asda own rice cooker as a Christmas present from my younger brother this year. I will be honest my first thought was not that I was thrilled to have yet another electrical item to squeeze into my already limited cupboard space. However I cleared a space in the cupboard and was pleasantly surprised at how often I started to use the rice cooker.
I wouldn't say a rice cooker is an essential item for your kitchen; I always got by cooking my rice in the microwave. This is actually a quicker process but if you add to much water you run the risk of making the microwave dirty. The rice cooker is a cleaner way to cook the rice.
The cooker came in a nice stainless steel silver colour, with a glass lid with a black rim and handle. The cable was also black but a tad on the short side. The lid has a tiny hole on the top that allows the steam to escape; you have to turn the lid so the steam doesn't stream out into your face and be careful not to put your arm over the hole to remove the lid. The cooker has a removable bowl inside that is a grey plastic colour; it has measurements up the side so you can clearly see how much water to add to the rice and it is also safe to put in the dishwasher.
The rice cooker is easy to use; it only has two settings so it's not overly complicated to use. The instruction manual that also comes with the book does explain how to use the cooker but I managed to work it out using basic common sense.
Plug the machine in and turn on at the mains, add rice and water into bowl, put lid back onto cooker making sure the steam release hole is not in a potentially awkward position. Flick switch to 'Cook'. Cook for a few minutes; stir occasionally to stop rice sticking to the bowl. Once rice is cooked the cooker does have the option to 'Warm' the rice. This means that the cooker will keep your rice warm until everything else is ready.
The only problems I have had with the cooker are that I once forgot to flick the switch to warm and left the rice cooking. I accidentally burnt the rice and a layer of rice stuck to the bottom of the dish. The rice that was the layer above this was perfectly fine to eat. I have had the rice cooker just over a year and it recently broke. It had a 2 year cover and has been replaced with a new one. We did not really find out what was wrong with the cooker other than that there was a loose wiring connection. ASDA replaced the item quickly and easily but for an item that I didn't really want in the beginning I think if it breaks again I won't bother to replace it again.
The positives of the cooker are that it is quite stylish looking for its price; it cooks rice easily and quickly with minimum fuss allowing me to sort other items at the same time.
I wouldn't personally buy this item myself, though as a gift I was pleasantly surprised how often I used the rice cooker. It broke down relatively quickly and if I hadn't been using it regularly to make baby food I would not have replaced the item. It's easy to clean and use and is a good price though i would'nt pay £15 for it myself.
I absolutely love rice and pasta though I have to admit to burning it more often than not sadly. So when I spotted a rice cooker in Asda and from Asda costing only £7.00 I simply had to buy it to see if that remedied the situation at all!
It came in a box with photographs of the rice cooker all over the it and we are also told that it has a 1 Litre capacity, has a toughened lid and is powerful and of course contact details for the manufacturer which is Asda are also given. Inside the box there is a simple leaflet which basically gives us instructions plus a white plastic spoon and a see through plastic measuring cup.
The Rice Cooker Itself:
The outer casing is silver, it has black plastic handles and none slip feet to the base of it along with a glass lid which has a steam vent on it and again a black handle. On the front of the unit there is a black plastic panel and on that a switch you can flip to cook which gives off a red light or to warm which gives you an amber light. Its really nice looking and not all that big this one and thankfully hasn't got Asda written all over it either!
To use this is ever so simple indeed. There is a removable, none stick pot that you pop over the heat element which is in the base of the cooker and measure out with the little jug provided how much rice and water you need. This is explained in the little leaflet given and really isn't rocket science at all. You then flip the cook button and pop the lid on and then it simply cooks the rice for you and flips to warm which basically keeps your cooked rice warm so you don't have to watch over it this however you do need to manually make sure your machine is off as it doesn't do this itself sadly. Timings depending on how much rice you want to cook really do vary and this isn't a quick option!
This cooks all types of rice perfectly in my experience. I rinse my rice before cooking it (as suggested in the leaflet given) and I find it to absorb all the water that I added which means I can rinse it but only if I really want to. I cook white rice in it, brown (my favourite) and basmati rice and it copes with everything. Whats more it is wipe clean, easy to clean as it cooks in a none stick bowl and has a reasonably long power lead to it.
If your rubbish, like me at cooking rice and just want something that basically does it all for you this is a brilliant gadget however do be mindful this is only for cooking rice in so your best to have space for it in your kitchen!
I don't regret buying mine at all. I do have the room to display it and do eat rice several times a week and this for me is now an essential. No more soggy or burnt rice is in my flat and thats got to be a good thing as I was sick of ruining pans!
Only available in Asda stores.
This review is also posted on Ciao under this same username.
I got this on special offer not releasing I need a rice cooker my partner wanted to get one I couldn't understand why a rice cooker is needed but now I understand its great put rice in add water and just walk away wait for the little click and its done, if you don't hear the click though it will just wait for you on warm mode, now I haven't tried any other rice cookers to compare with but I like it... no not perfect rice every time, if you don't add enough water you have hard rice to much and you have rice pudding! The rice at the bottom isn't edible but once you get the knack you can get quite nice rice I may now invest in a slightly better model now. If your not sure if you will use or get on with a rice cooker this is a good one to get as asda always seems to have it on special offer. Its quite small so doesn't take much counter space and you get just about 4 potions out of it.
Just to add some extra and answer Nar2's questions...
It is not heavy at all, It is a metal bowl that you cook the rice in I have never washed it in the dish washer as it it is not needed it is non stick and the rice at the bottom that is not really edible sticks together and usually falls into the bin in one clump and then you can just clean with a sponge or a cloth no scrubbing required what it a lot better than if your cooking rice in a pan.
The metal bowl that you cook in can get quite hot so if you use gloves you can take it out and carry it to a table but I would suggest putting it on a plate so not to burn your self or damage the table. You also get a plastic serving spoon so not to damage the non-stick and a measuring pot. The liter capacity is 1 liter and it is a good size for a small family but I would recommend getting a bigger one for any more than four people.
I got mine for £7 and I believe it is usually around £16 but I often see it on special offer when I am in store.
I have read loads of reviews about rice cookers and lusted after one of my own but never seemed to get round to buying one. I went to Asda a couple of months ago and at the end of the aisle was a display of shiny rice cookers for the bargain price of just £7. I couldn't resist that kind of deal and grabbed one and took it home.
In theory rice should be one of the easiest foods to cook as all you do is bung it into boiling water but it is something I regularly manage to mess up, I was looking forward to having perfect rice every time but was to be disapointed.
The rice cooker is simply constructed. The body is made of stainless steel and this contains a cooking element. The inner bowl is made of metal of some type with graduations marked to let you know how much water to use and it has a capacity of 1 litre. There is only one switch on the front of the cooker together with a light which glows red when the rice is cooking and orange when it is being kept warm.
The instruction manual is written in Engrish so is fairly hard to understand. To cook rice you are meant to use the supplied measure to put in cupfulls of rice and then add water to the line, 1 cup of rice and you fill to number 1 for example. Then you press the switch and the rice starts cooking away at first on high and then on low to keep it warm. You are told to leave the rice on a low heat for 10 minutes to allow it to fully cook.
I loved my rice cooker at first, it was my new favourite toy and we had rice every day for a week. It cooks long grain and basmatti rice perfectly as long as you keep an eye on the cooker and are there to switch it off. I don't know how it would cope with more exotic rices like wild rice or even wholemeal rice which normally have a longer cooking time. I even tried using one of those packets of flavoured rice and the rice was cooked perfectly but it suffered from not being stirred during cooking so the flavour was not evenly distributed through the rice.
There are a few problems with the rice cooker. The first is that there is no timer function on it, I have no idea how long it takes to go through the cook cycle and onto the warming setting, there is no audible beep or anything to let you know that your rice has cooked and if you leave it on the timer function for too long then the rice dries out. I have never timed the cycle relying instead on guesswork (and the manual does not tell you how long the cycle is either) and have managed to dry out my rice this way.
The second problem is that the switch is temperemental and I found that after using the cooker maybe a dozen times that it did not always go onto the warm cycle but instead carried on cooking.
The third problem is that I lost the measuring cup for the rice, I did store it inside the body of the cooker most of the time but it ended up getting separated somehow when doing the washing up. This meant that I could not measure out the rice the last time I used it and the manual gives no indication of what quantity of rice goes with what quantity of water, i.e use 1 measure rice to 2 measures water. I guestimated the amount to use last night and ended up with too much water and I also walked away and left the cooker to do its magic and came back to find a pile of soggy basmati rice which was so waterlogged that it had turned into a pile of inedible mush!
OK, I only spent £7 on this rice cooker so have not lost too much money in my purchase but it is now destined to be thrown into the dark depths of the forgotten appliance cupboard never to see the light of day again. When it worked perfectly it was good and produced perfect rice but the fact it has proven to be temperamental and the fact I can't use it without the supplied measuring cup means it is more hassle than it is worth.
I bought a rice cooker from Asda when it was on offer at £7 as I had heard positives comments on the product. The cooker uses 400Watts of power.
Do you need a rice cooker?
While most of my life I have successfully survived without a rice cooker and simply cooked it in a pan like most other people I have found that since having a child I simply don't get time in the kitchen to stand and watch over food to ensure that it doesn't boil dry or stick so have resorted to buying boil in the bag rice. I do find these aren't a great solution either due to inflated costs to put it into a bag and the fact I find it very difficult to check if the rice is cooked and so consequently rice is all too often on the mushy side. I decided that this was something while I could live without it would enhance my cooking and as my son does enjoy rice it is something we do eat at least twice a week.
The rice cooker does come in a cardboard box with the rice cooker photographed on the front of the box. All parts are wrapped in a plastic bag and you are advised to wash the rice pan with warm soapy water before use. The box contains the base, inner pot with a glass lid, a measuring cup for the rice and a plastic spatula for removing the rice.
It does come with an instruction booklet which does seem to be very inadequate in fact I was actually more confused once I had read them than before. It does advise that rice is not washed in the inner pot as it may become less affected .So it is important to measure the rice out and wash it before putting it into the cooker.
The measuring pot does have increments so that you can accurately assess how much rice you would like. Then add the water to the inner markings level on the inside of the inner pot. These do start at two so my first attempt I used to cups of rice between myself and my three year old son. To then start simply plug in and push the cook button down The wire is quite long and can easily be moved to a safe spot from your socket.. Immediately a red light will appear to show it is starting it too cook. The instruction gave no idea of how long the rice would take to cook but it does have a keep warm function which it flicks onto once it is cooked although you are advised to leave it on keep warm for at least ten minutes to complete cooking of the rice.
On my first attempt I cooked long grain rice and I was delighted with the results. The rice was light and fluffy and actually reminded me of the rice I get from my local Chinese takeaway. It seemed much less mushy and had taken little effort to cook however there was far too much rice for both my son and I so I found that cooking one cup of rice is ideal for both of us.
I have also cooked basmati rice with equally positive results. I do find that as soon as I start preparing my evening meal I put the rice on first so that it is ready in about twenty five minutes but obviously cooking time does vary dependent upon how much rice you cook.
It advises to wash with warm soapy water and advises if salt is used to ensure that all salt traces are removed as this can cause corrosion. I do not add salt to cooking so this has not been an issue for me.
Storage in my kitchen is very limited and I do not have the cupboard space for a rice cooker so it has to sit in the corner. While not something that I do think adds a great deal to the design of the kitchen it is not unattractive. I find I can store the rice cup but not the scoop in the inner pot but this does mean I am not hunting round for the rice measure when I am starting to cook tea.
I do think this is an item that will pay for itself in time. I now do not order rice from the Chinese takeaway which saves nearly £1.80 and I now no longer buy boil in the bag rice which is much cheaper.