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September 2004 Issue
The Joys of a Rice Cooker
by Ronda L. Halpin
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Wheat Berry & Cranberry Salad

Wheat berries are a terrific way to increase fiber in your diet and a wonderful way to let your rice cooker do the work for you!
  • 1 c. wheat berries -- find them at the natural foods section of your grocery store
  • 2 c. water
  • Pinch salt
  • 2/3 c. dried cranberries
  • 2 green onions, bias-sliced
  • 1/2 c. raspberry vinaigrette -- choose your favorite variety
Place the wheat berries in a rice cooker bowl. Add the water and salt; cover the cooker and turn on the HIGH setting.

When the rice cooker switches itself to the WARM (or OFF on some models) position, remove the berries and rinse them under cool water and allow them to drain.

Place the drained wheat berries and the remaining ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine. Serve as a unique side dish with chicken or pork.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: about 40 minutes


Simple Sausage & Lentil Soup

This is a great stick-to-your-ribs soup that can be put together in less than an hour. The leftovers make great fare for lunches.
  • 2 c. red lentils
  • 6 c. water
  • 8 oz. smoked sausage, cut into small slices
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, halved and sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
Place all of the ingredients in the rice cooker. Cover and turn on the HIGH setting. Set a timer for 45 minutes.

When the timer sounds, check the soup for doneness. The vegetables should be soft. Adjust the seasonings as necessary and remove the bay leaf before serving.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 45 minutes

If there's a topic that you'd like to see covered in this column, let me know. You can always post comments in the discussion board using the forms provided in the articles or email me directly at .

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