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Veggie Slacking: Rice Cooker Edition - The vegetarian slacker

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August 30th, 2011

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11:09 pm - Veggie Slacking: Rice Cooker Edition
I recently acquired a rice cooker, so I've been trying to put it to good use. I've found it to be really useful for cooking one pot meals; it makes cleanup fast and easy and I don't need to sit there and watch/stir it.

First, a quick and easy breakfast (that I've actually used it for more than rice so far):

Rice Cooker Oatmeal

3/4 cup rolled oats (I like the 5 minute stovetop kind, but any should work)
1 cup water
1/2 cup almond milk (optional; add another 1/2 cup water if you prefer)
1 spoonful brown sugar (I use the same spoon I'm going to eat it with -- it's probably about 1 tbsp)
Small handful frozen fruit (I like blue or blackberries)

Put everything in the rice cooker pot and stir it once. Turn on rice cooker (white rice mode, if you have options). Stir after 10 minutes to help reduce sticking. Let cook for another 10 minutes or until desired consistency. Transfer to a bowl, eat and enjoy.

The next one can be a little more involved, but it's still pretty slacker-ish:

Red Rice and Beans
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
1 clove garlic, finely diced (or pressed)
1 cup white rice
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
1 can (14.5oz) kidney beans, including fluid
Salt, pepper, chili powder to taste

My rice cooker has a 'Saute-then-Simmer' setting, so I do this all in the rice cooker pot, but it would work just the same if you do the first part in a separate pan (just one more dish to clean!). Heat olive oil (using 'saute' button or at medium heat on a stove) while you chop onion and pepper. Saute onion and pepper for about 2 minutes and then add garlic. When onion is translucent and bell pepper is tender, add the remaining ingredients and switch to white rice mode (or transfer the sauted ingredients to rice cooker pot if they were cooked separately). You shouldn't need to add any more water -- the fluid from the tomatoes and beans should be enough to cook the rice and adds a good flavor. Cook about 25 minutes (or until your rice cooker tells you it's done, if you have a sensor). It will feed 2 people with a bit leftover. I'd recommend going heavier on the spices than you might think, as my first couple batches came out pretty bland. I top it with Sriracha as well. I've also found using 2 Tofurkey Italian style sausages in the sauted section added a great flavor/texture (with the right amount of Sriracha it's like a veggie jambalaya). Though if you're counting calories or dollars, you'll probably want to use a lower fat/cost meat substitute like textured soy protein (or just skip it -- it's pretty tasty as is!).
Current Mood: satisfiedsatisfied

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[User Picture]
Date:August 31st, 2011 04:11 pm (UTC)
mmm, jambalaya. i've been trying to find a recipe that doesn't call for eight different kinds of seafood and sausage.

also, rice cooker recipes = awesome. I learned how to cook just about everything in a rice cooker when I lived in the dorms and that was mly only cooking implement besides a communal (read: filthy) microwave.

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