As we continue to try and stay at home as much as possible during Phase One of Singapore’s reopening post-Circuit Breaker, we’re still Working From Home (WFH), with many juggling some form of Home-Based Learning (HBL). And that means families are still as busy as ever. But don’t worry though — when it comes to getting healthy and delicious meals on the table in a jiffy — just rely on your good ol’ rice cooker.
From one-pot meals to cakes and desserts, the humble rice cooker is definitely the MVP (most valuable player) of your home kitchen. We’ve got some popular family-friendly recipes for you to try.
This viral recipe took the internet by storm even before the pandemic — and its lockdown regimes — began. Apparently, tucking into a KFC meal is a Christmas tradition in Japan, and somehow, perhaps as a way to deal with leftovers, KFC Rice was invented. It’s super easy to make and consists of just four ingredients. Try it for yourself!
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 cups mild chicken stock
2-3 pieces KFC Original Recipe chicken
2 cups uncooked white rice
1. Wash the rice and place it in the rice cooker along with the chicken stock.
2. Add soy sauce and place the chicken on top.
3. Close the lid and start the cook cycle.
4. Once done, take the chicken out. Remove the bones and shred the meat.
5. Mix the chicken with the rice. Add salt and pepper to taste.
While you may not get the smoky wok hei of traditional claypot rice with this MeatMen recipe laden with umami bombs, you won’t be left wanting in the taste department for sure. Depending on how you work your rice cooker, you may even get the crackly crust at the bottom of the pot!
200g uncooked white rice
200g boneless chicken thigh
1 Chinese wine sausage (sliced)
4 Chinese mushrooms (soaked and sliced)
2 shallots (minced)
4 cloves garlic (minced)
2 slices salted fish brined in oil
¼ tsp sugar
2 tbsp oil
2 tbsp Shaoxing wine
Chopped spring onions for garnish
Blanched vegetables of your choice
Ingredients for chicken marinade:
1 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tsp oyster sauce
¼ tsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp ginger juice
2 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp Shaoxing wine
1 tsp cornflour
½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp white pepper
Ingredients for the sauce:
2 tsp light soy sauce
½ tsp dark soy sauce
½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp pepper
1 tsp shallot oil
1 tsp sesame oil
1. Cut boneless chicken thigh into bite-size pieces.
2. Marinate it (with the above-mentioned chicken marinade ingredients) for an hour or overnight.
3. Wash the rice and add to rice cooker with 225ml water. Cover and start cook cycle.
4. Mix above-mentioned sauce ingredients together in a bowl. Set aside.
5. Place salted fish on a plate and sprinkle ¼ tsp sugar on it.
6. Heat oil in wok. Add minced shallot and garlic, stir-fry till fragrant.
7. Add in Chinese wine sausage and Chinese mushrooms, stir-fry for 1 minute.
8. Add in marinated chicken and fry till meat changes colour. Deglaze with Shaoxing wine.
9. Pour in sauce mixture and mix well. Dish out.
10. When the rice starts to steam, add the cooked chicken mixture and salted fish.
11. Close the lid and cook till rice is done.
12. Once ready, give rice a good mix. Serve with blanched vegetables and chopped spring onions.
(See also: The First Dish I Taught my Child to Cook)
Known for having cancer-fighting antioxidants, matcha, which is ground up young green tea leaves, is also a well-loved ingredient in drinks and desserts. This flexible recipe from Zairyo, a purveyor of specialist Japanese produce and speciality products, caters to different tastebuds.
2 packets of pancake mix
2 tbsp matcha powder
1.5 tbsp fine white sugar (optional)
1 can azuki red bean (optional)
1. Empty the packets of pancake mix into the rice cooker pot.
2. Add the matcha powder and if you wish, sugar. Combine the powdered ingredients until the colour of the mix looks even.
3. In a separate bowl, add milk to eggs. Beat well.
4. Add egg and milk mixture into the rice pot, stirring gently till lumps are gone.
5. Set the pot in the rice cooker and cook on normal/white rice mode.
6. When done, open the rice cooker and check: If the cake is still gooey, or if a toothpick doesn’t come out clean, start the cook cycle again.
7. Once done, remove the rice cooker pot and place it upside down on a plate. The cake should fall out by itself.
Bring the taste of the pasar malam right into your home with some comforting muah chee. It’s been a top choice with home cooks during the circuit breaker period. It’s easy-peasy, especially if you make it with this hit recipe by Rice Cooker Man Leslie Koh, and takes just minutes.
2 cups glutinous rice flour
2 cups water
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp sugar
1. Add glutinous rice flour to the water. Mix well to dissolve clumps.
2. Coat the inside of the rice cooker pot with a thin layer of oil.
3. Pour the flour mixture into the pot and start the cook cycle.
4. After 3 minutes, open the lid and stir the mixture. Let it cook for another 3 minutes.
5. Repeat this cycle until it becomes a homogeneous ball. Check that it’s fully cooked by slicing it in half.
6. Add sesame oil and toss.
7. Combine peanut powder with sugar and mix well.
8. Cut out your desired portion from the ball of dough. Leave the remaining portion in the rice cooker — use the keep warm function.
9. Place the muah chee in the peanut mixture, cut into bite-size pieces and toss.
Another super quick and easy recipe from Rice Cooker Man Leslie Koh, this is usually a hit with the kids. Shape the mince into balls for meatball spaghetti.
250g beef mince
350g chicken stock
350g tomato sauce
1 yellow onion (diced)
3 cloves garlic (diced)
2 tbsp cooking oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Add oil into the rice cooker pot (do not switch on yet).
2. Add garlic and onion. Mix well to ensure garlic and onion are coated in oil.
3. Turn on the rice cooker and start the cook cycle. Leave for 5-8 minutes.
4. Once the garlic and onion are sizzling, add beef mince.
5. Let it cook till it is 70% cooked. Add tomato sauce and chicken stock.
6. Add black pepper and pinch of salt. Stir well and add spaghetti.
7. Cook for 12-15 minutes, depending on how soft you like your pasta. Mix and serve.
MOS Burger Biryani
Arguably the best one yet from Artichoke Chef Bjorn Shen’s fast food biryani experiments, this recipe is a fun one to try at home. Tip: involve the kids! The payback: discovering all the yummy “treasures” in this pot of truly innovative dish.
2 cups washed uncooked rice
Half a cob of ready-cooked corn (from convenience store)
1 tbsp ghee
1 red onion
Black pepper to taste
Ingredients from MOS Burger:
2 MOS Burger Corn Soup
3 Spicy MOS Burger
1 MOS Chicken
3 MOS Burger Mussels Nuggets
1 MOS Green Salad with Thousand Island Dressing
MOS Burger chilli sauce sachets
MOS Burger tomato ketchup sachets
1. Place rice, corn soup and corn kernels into rice cooker pot. Add some black pepper. Close the lid and start cooking.
2. Marinate MOS Chicken in garam masala and MOS chilli sauce. Set aside.
3. Chop up the salad. Mix in a bowl with the Thousand Island dressing. Refrigerate. This will act as the “raita” accompaniment.
4. Slice up the onion and mix in MOS Burger ketchup. Refrigerate. This will be the “chutney” accompaniment.
5. When the rice is done, it will be about 75% cooked. Add ghee and give it a good mix. Dish it out onto a plate.
6. Put the Spicy MOS Burger patties and “insides” into the rice cooker. Discard the buns.
7. Place the marinated MOS Chicken in, along with the MOS Mussels Nuggets.
8. Add a splash of water and place the rice on top of the ingredients.
9. Put the rice cooker pot back into the cooker and start a second cook cycle.
10. When done, fluff up the rice and serve with the “raita” and “chutney”.
Making this hawker favourite the traditional way is time-consuming and while worth the effort, it’s surely not a weekday (read: working day) affair. Relying on readily available pantry ingredients and technology — the rice cooker! — this recipe by The Domestic Goddess Wannabe Diana Gale requires a fraction of the effort but has great payback.
4 pieces chicken drumstick (or other preferred chicken parts)
1 piece ginger (about 3cm), skinned and sliced
5 cloves garlic
4-5 coriander roots
2 tbsp vegetable oil
3 pandan leaves
2 cups washed uncooked rice
2-2.5 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 tbsp Shaoxing wine
Salt to taste
1. Rub the chicken with Shaoxing wine. Set aside.
2. Tie the pandan leaves into a knot and place at the bottom of the rice cooker pot. Add rice on top of the pandan leaves. Set aside.
3. In a frying pan, saute ginger, garlic and coriander roots in oil until fragrant.
4. Add fried mixture to the rice. Season with salt.
5. Lay the chicken on top of the rice and add chicken stock.
6. Cook until the chicken is cooked through (the juices from the chicken should run clear).
7. Remove the chicken and ginger/ garlic/ coriander roots and fluff the rice. Serve hot, with chilli sauce and vegetables.
Also known as pulut hitam, this traditional comfort food is fragrant, creamy and sweet. Best for cool, rainy days. Try this easy-peasy recipe from @thesilverchef.
150g black glutinous rice
5 cups water
Sugar to taste
1. Wash black glutinous rice thoroughly.
2. Place rice and water into rice cooker pot. Set to rice cooking mode and start.
3. When done, usually after an hour, open the lid and you will see a glossy, thickened bubur hitam. Sweeten to taste.
4. Ladle into bowls and drizzle some coconut milk for that extra creamy richness.
(See also: Online Fresh Food Delivery in Singapore)
Which of these awesomely easy rice cooker meals will you be trying out this weekend? Let us know how it goes, and do share any other genius recipes you’ve tried!
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