Saturday, July 1, 2017

Rewarding Rice

30-Min. Kalbi-Spiced Chard and Beef Rice Bowl

Review: Oster Rice Cooker


Chard from our garden, rice cooked hands-free in my rice cooker, one patty-worth of lean hamburger, and some Kalbi Korean BBQ Sauce, makes a tasty meal. The most time-consuming element, preparing the chard, took less than three minutes, but the reward was this yummy rice-bowl dish.

I measured rice and water into the cooker and turned it on, set a timer for 30 minutes, then began washing eight leaves of bright green chard. I trimmed the leaf-blades from the ribs, stacked the half-leaves on the cutting board, and began chopping, ending with about two cups of one-inch-long chard shreds. 

These went into a medium-hot skillet with a little oil—I used sesame—for a quick sauté, then I pulled the chard to one side, and browned the burger meat on the other side. A cup of kalbi sauce was stirred in, then I reduced the heat to medium low and covered the pan. 

Now I have 25 minutes left on the timer. I can leave the ingredients to finish cooking by themselves, simply assembling them once the timer sounds. A scoop of perfectly-cooked rice, a spoonful of the kalbi-spiced beef and chard on top, and a few slices of pickled jalapeño, and I'm ready to enjoy!

The rice cooker has taken the most problematic part of cooking rice dishes out of the picture. I've made brown rice, white rice and jasmine rice in it, and also cooked quinoa and ebly (wheat berry) grains in the cooker, although these take more tending because the timing of the cooker is designed for rice.

It may be a single-tasker, as Alton Brown calls such kitchen tools, but I wouldn't want to live without it now that I have one!