Have you ever bought a new kitchen tool or appliance that completely changes the way you cook/your life? I’ve had a few (such as my miniature masher), but none that so impacted my life as the rice cooker.
The great thing about them is you can cook pretty much any grain in them, and you can also prepare a whole meal in the one pot, with minimal effort. The following aren’t so much recipes as “instructions” on how to make delicious and nutritious meals that don’t require a lot of work.
(Note: I use the formula of 2 cups water : 1 cup grain in all of the following recipes, and generally use around 2 cups of dry grain per recipe).
- vegetables (I usually use a few field mushrooms, and a leek, or sweet potato) diced into roughly 1cm cubes
- arborio/short-grain rice
- non-dairy “butter”/margarine (I use Nuttlex)
- seasonings (to taste): Braggs liquid aminos, vegetable stock, nutritional yeast (LOTS), porcini powder (optional but delicious), smoked paprika
Instructions: add non-dairy butter, diced vegetables, Braggs to taste, and a small amount of water (~2tbsp), and set rice cooker to “cook”. When vegetables have reduced and are tender (usually around 10-15mins, depending on veggies), turn cooker to warm and add rice, appropriate amount of water and seasonings, mixing thoroughly. Set to “cook”, and stir occasionally.
- instant curry paste (I often use Tasty Bite’s eggplant curry – they have a good range of vegan sauces, etc.)
- brown rice
- can of legumes – I prefer chickpeas, kidney or black beans, or 5 bean mix
- finely diced vegetables – onions, carrots, broccoli, mushrooms, potato, sweet potato all work well
- small amount vegetable oil (~1tbsp)
- seasonings (to taste): “beef” stock (I use Massell’s), liquid smoke (optional but highly recommended), paprika, Bragg’s liquid aminos, porcini powder (optional), onion flakes (optional)
Instructions: add oil, vegetables, legumes and Braggs’ to rice cooker and set to “cook”. When reduced, set to “warm” and add rice, water and seasonings. Set to “cook” and take a break! (Note: brown rice takes longer to cook than white rice, approximately 40-50mins.)
VEGAN COUNTRY STEW
- pearled barley (in the health food section of the supermarket)
- can of Sanitarium “Country Hot Pot”
- ~ 1 tbsp dairy-free “butter”/margarine
- diced vegetables: mushrooms, potato, broccoli/broccolini, carrot all work well
- 1 cup frozen peas (optional)
- seasonings: “beef” stock, mixed herbs, dried rosemary (depending on how much is in your herb mix), Braggs’ liquid aminos, nutritional yeast (optional, gives it a cheesy flavour), porcini powder (optional), onion flakes (optional), liquid smoke (optional)
Instructions: add “butter”, diced vegetables, peas and approx 2tbsps water to rice cooker and set to “cook”. When reduced, set to “warm” and add the “Country Hot Pot” mix, pearled barley and water, seasonings, and tvp (remember to add an extra cup of water per cup of TVP). Set to “cook” and you’re done! (Note: pearled barley takes about the same time to cook as white rice, 30mins or so.)
So there you have it, three delicious meals made with minimal effort, maximum nutrition, and frankly delicious outcomes. Let me know if you’ve any rice cooker recipes of your own!