Friday, July 27, 2012

Salmon & Vegetable Rice, Cooked in a Rice Cooker

I'm a TERRIBLE Asian. I can't cook rice to save my life. Long-grain, wild rice, pilaf, I either end up with some kind of ghettofied runny risotto, or CRUNCHY rice. The BF has a foolproof method (Alton Brown's, apparently). I tried it, followed the directions perfectly, and STILL ended up with awful rice; some of the grains were mush, and some were OPAQUE and hard. So, whenever rice is on the menu, the BF gets sidled with the task of cooking it. 

Now, ASIAN rice? THAT I can make...thanks to my rice cooker. I guess I can kind of rationalize my complete lack of rice-cooking skill to the fact that I, and pretty much any Asian under the age of 40, grew up with a rice cooker in the house. Just dump in the rice, add some water, and you have perfectly cooked, foolproof rice! 

Rice cookers can even cook dried beans, or entire meals, like my kayaku gohan. This recipe can also be made, from start to finish, in a rice cooker, and only takes a few simple ingredients. This rice works great as a side dish OR a main entree - I usually would use brown rice for this recipe, but I've got some white rice that I'm trying to use up!

Also, this makes a GREAT bento filler in place of plain white rice!

Salmon & Vegetable Rice
adapted from Pig Pig's Corner

2 1/2 RICE cups (6 oz cups) of short-grain Japanese rice
1 Tbsp hon-dashi/dashinomoto seasoning (powdered dashi soup stock)
1 Tbsp soy sauce
2 1/2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (I used peas & carrots)
1 14.75oz can of salmon (drain and reserve the liquid)

Wash and drain the rice. Combine the rice, hon-dashi, soy sauce, and the liquid from the canned salmon in the rice cooker pot.

Add water to the "2" line. Close the lid and turn on the rice cooker.

Once the rice cooker begins to steam, open the cooker and add the frozen vegetables; you don't have to stir them in or anything. Close the lid and resume cooking (some cookers will resume automatically, some will require that you press a button/switch/etc).

Once the rice is fully cooked (my cooker will switch from "Rice Cooking" to "Keep Warm" with a nice, loud CLICK), flake the salmon and mix it into the rice.

NOTE: Pick through your salmon WELL to remove any little bones. No matter what the can says about bones, I ALWAYS find some.


  1. If you used fresh salmon, could you just put it in on top of the veggies?

    1. I'm sure you could, but I don't know if it would cook all the way through if using raw salmon. If you had leftover cooked salmon, there'd definitely be no problem at all with using it!

  2. That looks so good! I am wondering about modifying this by replacing the salmon with a partially cooked marinated ground pork or beef. I am thinking about marinating the pork or beef with shoyu, sugar and a little ginger and garlic (just a small amount of pork or beef).

    1. Sounds great! THe key is to have the meat almost completely cooked through, since you add it at the END of the cooking cycle. The vegetables are in the cooker just long enough to go from frozen solid to steamed through, and I am not sure how long it would take to cook meat.

  3. This looks great, too. Another super link for Food on Friday: Salmon. Thank you.

  4. This is nice for us parents, our kids might have a different opinion...until they get to be our age. :-)

    1. Absolutely! There are TONS of foods that I LOVE now, that I HATED when I was a kid - like mushrooms! :)