Saturday, February 6, 2010

Low Price Zojirushi NP-HBC18 10-Cup Rice Cooker and Warmer with Induction Heating System, Stainless Steel

Zojirushi NP-HBC18 10-Cup Rice Cooker and Warmer with Induction Heating System, Stainless Steel

Product Description
Zojirushi's newest Induction Heating System rice cooker and warmer incorporates induction heating and micro computer technology.The features are as follows: Superior induction heating (IH) technology; Healthy cooking options- brown rice, GABA brown rice and germinated brown rice; Multi-menu cooking functions: white rice (regular, softer or harder), mixed rice, sushi rice, porridge, sweet rice and quick cooking; New easy to clean clear coated stainless steel exterior; black thick spherical inner cooking pan; detachable and washable inner lid; Easy-to-read LCD control panel for Clock and Timer functions; interchangeable melody and beep signer

  • Measures 15-5/8 by 10-13/16 by 9-5/16-inch.
  • Spatula, spatula holder, and rice-measuring cup included
  • Multi-menu cooking functions; LCD control panel; keep warm; timer
  • Superior induction heating evenly distributes heat for excellent results
  • 10-Cup rice cooker and warmer with micro computer technology

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Eye sore
My review is for its look, not for quality or functionality. So one star only for at least changed color from white, pink, or flowery to grey, close to stainless steel color.

Unlike most reviewers, I have used fuzzy logic rice cooker for more than 18 years. I bought the National brand - now called Panasonic "The brand Japanese trust" for about $125 in 1991-2. I like almost everything about it, most importantly the consistent quality of rice coming out of it. But the ugly pink color and shape has always bothered us. I use it average 4-5 times a week for all these years. Amazingly, this unit still works perfectly. But I have been looking for a newer updated looking one for years.

It might sound ridiculous. But it is very important for me that it needs to look smart and stylish since it will sit on my kitchen counter everyday for years to come judging from my old fuzzy logic rice cooker that still makes perfect rice.

Zojirushi's products are always solid. I have no doubt about it. For those who have used any rice cookers, you know they never stop working anyway. For those who have used fuzzy logic rice cooker, with preset functions, you know the rice always comes out right, no matter it is sticky rice or brown rice or mixed, (if you are not too far off in measurement). Porridge making is very easy and any other functions are not new either, except induction cooking and pressure cooking.

Amazon has most comprehensive reviews, best price and one of the best customer services. It made shopping so easy. One of the reviews said it was modern looking. That was it. I ordered it. I was so looking forward for its arrival.

The entire family was there to witness its unveil. Unfortunately, it looks so bulky and clumsy. Despite large, granite kitchen counter we have. It does not fit with the rest of appliances from Kitchen Aid to Cuisinart. I put it on the counter for a week. Trying to get used to its look. My husband calls it "eye sore". My son calls it "monster". I can't understand why Zojirushi who has built solid reputation for its line of products, still has not made any changes in its design.

Zojirushi, though it bills itself as "An image of innovation and thriftiness", is getting old and tired in terms of design. It needs people like a distance relative of Steve Jobs or some sort to help with its right side of brain (artistic side).

The newer design line of "Zutto" from Zojirushi seems to be an effort to improve the look, yet with much less functions, higher price is not justified. So it won't hurt to get some help for its left side of brain as well.

In the meantime, I will continue use my 18 years old, ugly but still functioning perfectly National fuzzy logic rice cooker.

This is the best rice cooker ever! I had another brand and was not happy with the quality of it but it made rice okay, I thought. Then when I got this new one, I realized there was no comparison. It cooks rice to perfection. It does take longer to cook than my cheaper one but well worth the wait.

My favorite rice cooker!
Over the past 40+ years - I think I bought my first "automatic" rice cooker in 1965 - I have owned quite a few rice cookers. I loved the first one and adore this one.

As the new technologies appeared on the market here in the U.S., I upgraded and also bought the larger capacity ones. I used my Zojirushi "flower" rice cooker for several years and still have it and use it when I need to cook two types of rice (or another grain) when my main one is in use.

I had to have the first "Neuro Fuzzy" Zojirushi and used it at least two or three times a week until the IH appeared. Being an appliance/techie junkie, I just HAD to have one.

(I passed the neuro fuzzy cooker along to my daughter and she uses it almost daily.)

This is to me truly the "ultimate" rice cooker. But it also cooks so much more than just rice.

I am a huge fan of various grains, cooked alone or in combination with other grains and other foods.

This cooker is ideal for cooking everything from porridge to pilaf.

Buy the Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook - you will not be disappointed and will widen your range of foods that can be cooked painlessly in this cooker.

I'm a very experienced cook but I learned a lot from this cookbook.

Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? They are wrong.

I won't leave my home when I have something cooking on a gas cooktop but think nothing of setting this to cook and going out for several hours as I know it will finish the cooking cycle and switch to keep warm and I will have something ready to serve when I return.

The Cadillac Of Rice Cooker
I have used a 10 Cup Sanyo Rice Cooker: Sanyo ECJ-D100S 10-Cup Micro-Computerized Rice Cooker/Steamer, White with Stainless Accent and loved it. I thought it was the best Rice Cooker until I read about Induction Rice Cookers and decided to give it a try. Now Sanyo did not have 10 Cup Induction Models for sale in the USA so I decided to try this Zojirushi and boy I have been impressed so far.

There was some initial pungent odor that came out when I first used the Cooker and this really got me all worked up and ready to sue someone but after careful research online I came to understand that it was remnants of manufacturing oil that was burning off. To minimize this odor this online source suggested you first wash the inner cooking bowl thoroughly with warm soapy water (which I did) and then fill it half way with water and select "Quick Cooking" menu (which I did not) to boil off the manufacturing oil in case yours have remnants like mine obviously did. It is interesting to note that when I contacted Zojirushi regarding this odor incidence they first denied ever having received any similar complaints in the past. The Rep even suggested the possibility that I might have received a fake and or defective product since I purchased it from eBay. This is notwithstanding the fact that this dealer who sold it to me sells tens if not hundredths of Brand New Zojirushi products daily on eBay. He indicated that Zojirushi would not warranty any of their products bought on eBay. Talk about manufacturer standing by their products. He even made a moronic claim that Zojirushi Rice Cooker could not have been defective since all their cookers have been FDA tested, approved and certified safe for the US consumers. Go figure.

Now as far as the cooker's performance goes, it is as best as it gets. I only eat "Southern Wild Blend" ( mixture of brown, red & wild rice) and occasional Brown Rice. The former is available from a company called 'Southern Brown Rice' based in Weiner, Arkansas. This Cooker cooks brown rice and "Southern Wild Blend" exceptionally well and the timer is spot on too. I always add one or two drops of Extra Virgin Olive Oil into the inner cooking bowl to prevent residues from collecting underneath the lid.

I have tried the GABA option but just don't like the taste of the rice. It has some kind of 'leftover', 'overdone' taste to it and I just don't care about it regardless of any acclaimed health benefits.

If you love Steel Cut Oats then you must get this cooker. It cooks delicious tasting steel cut oatmeal in exactly 1hr 7mins. Just measure 1 cup oats to 4 cups water into the inner cooking bowl, add one or two drops of Extra Virgin Olive oil, select the "Porridge" cycle from the menu and come back later in 1 hr 7mins for a delicious breakfast. You can also use the timer setting to wake up to a delicious breakfast if you wish. This thing is simply amazing.

Not worth it
Everything I own is the Zojirushi, even the coffee maker. However, this rice cooker is some what disappointed, they have very fancy name "Induction Heating System" and make sound like some "Break through" technology to cook better rice. The fact is that my old and much cheaper Zojirushi rice cooker made "equal or better" rice and much better sushi rice. Do not wise your money, just buy the cheaper modal.

More Info: Low Price Zojirushi NP-HBC18 10-Cup Rice Cooker and Warmer with Induction Heating System, Stainless Steel


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