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Friday, August 24, 2012

Rice Cooker Meals for Everyone, Even Me

Now that I'm back in school, I'm more frazzled than usual. Out comes the trusty rice cooker. I used a recipe in a regionally published cookbook as a base.

Like many regional cookbooks, this one has recipes that are all kind of the same, calling for Rotel tomatoes and Cajun seasoning in almost every dish. I put together something based on Cabbage Casserole, which involved throwing into the rice cooker some cooked ground beef (I had this frozen), some onions, bell peppers, green onions, 1 cup rice, 1 cup or so of water, a few handfuls of preshredded cabbage and OF COURSE a small can of Rotel tomatoes. Turn on the rice cooker. It will know when to stop. If you need to add more liquid, do so.

Serve with hot sauce, also OF COURSE.

My hero Roger Ebert is right: the pot knows. I left out several things, including a pound of sausage, that I didn't have. It was still good.

The author says that this tastes like stuffed cabbage. Well, I wish. My grandma (from Poland) was a terrible cook, but she made wonderful stuffed cabbage. They didn't have Cajun seasonings or Rotel in Poland--or Brooklyn--though they probably do now. This tastes like what your Cajun grandma would have made.

After a long day at work, I must say I enjoy throwing a bunch of stuff into a single pot, letting the pot do the work, and then having enough to eat the next day. At which point, you will have to wash a single pot.

Next time, I'll add some cooked red beans.

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