Thursday, February 25, 2010

It Slices, It Dices, It walks your dog... But WAIT, There's MORE!

I'm an instruction kind of person.  This morning I broke out the instructions for my new rice cooker. 

In my immediate family, we tell each other what we want for presents.  Otherwise you end up with very odd gifts.  So, when asked,  we give a list of things we are interested in (complete with product names, item numbers, and links where to find the products) .  The rule is that the gifts have to be things you would never buy for yourself.  This year I asked for a rice cooker.  I would have never gotten one for myself because they are too expensive for a single task item.  My hope is, if rice is easier/cleaner to make, I will eat more brown rice instead of pasta.  I am a Pastaholic.   In researching which cooker I wanted, I found that some of them don't cook brown rice.  So I had to get one that could make brown rice and that means I ended up with one that can also work as a slow cooker.  A slow cooker (crock pot) has been on my RV list.  My research on the RV lifestyle has indicated that pot luck meals will become a part of my life and I'm not a cook.  Crock pot seemed an easy way to cook, be able to take warm meals to the pot lucks, and hopefully, make it more appealing for me to cook real meals for myself (aka save money). 

So I break out the instructions over coffee.  I was primarily looking to see what kind of rice to put on the grocery list.  Who knew there were so many kinds of rice?  Sweet rice, mixed rice, rinse free rice, haiga rice, whole grain brown rice (is there another type of brown rice?), and quick rice.   The blurb on the thing said it will also steam veggies while you are cooking the rice.  Not clear on how to get that done.   As with any new kitchen appliance, it came with recipes.  Little did I know, I also got a 'porridge cooker' for my birthday.  There is a recipe for porridge, and a special setting just for porridge.   I've heard of porridge before, but never knew what it was made of.  I can say the recipe does not sound appealing to me (rice, onion, asparagus, garlic, tuna (optional), chicken bouillon, salt/pepper, and olive oil).  Mind you..  it doesn't specify what kind of rice??  And the asparagus is supposed to be "parboiled", whatever that means?  The silly thing also has a special insert just for making your own Tofu.  Tofu??  Not a fan!!  I think I will be skipping these particular offerings.  

I did my exercise last night and back is better this morning. I'm off to the grocery store this afternoon (trying to beat the incoming snow storm). I'll let you know how the rice cooker does.

If anyone, that comes by here, gets any strange e-mails from my e-mail address, please let me know.  I had 2 'undeliverable mail' notices in my inbox this morning.  I haven't sent out any e-mails from that address.  Hope I didn't catch a bug from blogging and pass it around.  I have excellent security on my computer, but I am new to blogging, may be something I didn't know about.  Hope not!! 



LakeConroePenny,TX said...

Hi Katie,
When I switched to brown rice and saw the directions for cooking it on the stove for 35-45 minutes, I knew I would forget about it until the smoke alarm reminded me.
So I bought another package which had microwave directions on it. I do not like to cook a lot of things in the microwave, but it says:
"Combine 1 cup rice and 2 cups water in 2 quart covered microwave safe dish. Microwave at 100% power for 5 mins. Reduce to 50% power and microwave for an additional 30-40 minutes. Remove dish (carefully) and allow 5-10 minutes standing time. Fluff with fork".

PS. I do oatmeal in the microwave too. But I just put the oatmeal in a bowl, pour milk on it, and set it for 1-1/2 minutes. Doesn't dirty up pots. Works for me.

Be very wary of taking foods to a pot luck in a crock pot. A crock pot often doesn't bring the food up to the right temperature, 165 deg. in the thickest part. I won't eat from a crockpot at a pot luck, as they may not have brought it up to temperature when re-heating. I became very sick from that. Chicken often is still pink at the bone from crockpots.
Also, when they reheat casseroles in the oven, it takes a long time to get the inside up to temperature. So I prefer to take a chef's kettle to a pot luck.
I am a certified Food Manager, as I had a restaurant, so I always use my food thermometer, here and anywhere.
Happy Trails, Penny, TX

Katie said...

Food thermometer is a good thing for me to add to my list. I'm interested in the microwave oatmeal. Can you tell me how much oatmeal to how much milk? And it's the quick oats you're using right?