I love rice. In fact, most Asians love rice and have it almost every meal. (It's not racist, because I am Asian and it's true.) Traditionally, rice is the most prominent and most consume crop in all of Japan as well as other Asian countries.
There are many superstitions attached to rice in Asian culture:
1. For every grain of rice you leave behind in your bowl, there will be a mark your future spouse's face.
2. Do not stand your chopsticks into your food, especially not into rice.
3. If you don’t eat all your rice during meals, you will go blind.
Standing your chopsticks into your rice in this manner is only done at funerals.
In other words, rice is very important in Asian cultures. lol
There are currently tons of super expensive rice cookers in the market right now that sell amazing rice cookers that can even transform rice to bread, but because I don't own that and I have no means to purchase a $2000 rice cooker, I'm going to tell you about something I do own.
I would have taken a picture with my own rice cooker, but I scratched it up the body by using the sand clean scrubber to try to clean it... I felt stupid and got in trouble later... lol...
"The Induction Heating (IH) distributes heat more evenly and heats faster to cook the perfect rice every time. IH occurs when a magnetic material is placed in a magnetic field. IH rice cookers put the coils within the bottom of the rice cooker to create the magnetic field. When the aluminum nonstick inner cooking pan with stainless steel outer lining is placed into the rice cooker and the unit is activated, a magnetic field is generated to create instant heat. Through this technology, the inner cooking pan itself becomes the heat source utilizing both high heat and fine heat adjustments to control the cooking process.
Menu Settings include: white (regular, softer or harder), mixed, sushi, porridge, sweet, brown, GABA brown, and quick cooking." - Taken from the product page
I have this Zojirushi IH rice cooker at home and it is WONDERFUL. No joke or exaggeration, it makes cheap rice taste good, you can control the texture of the rice with a touch of a button, and the induction heating keeps rice from yellowing and drying out for DAYS. In fact, I can't even recall the IH rice cooker ever yellowing my rice, even if it did eventually dry. And because that wasn't enough to sell on this very reasonably priced product, to top it all off you can make stews in it if you want.
I convinced my IT manager to buy it, because I like mine so much and he was contemplating replacing his old one. Once he bought it, he told me after a few days later that "everything about that rice cooker is great." He said that every grain of rice tastes sweeter and has a better texture/more substance (?). Apparently, his mother brought home rice that was on sale and the next day she went to work to hear complaints about how bad the rice was. She went home and asked her son if he thought it tasted bad, because she thought it was fine. We are convinced it was the power of the rice cooker.
The Zojirushi brand itself is extremely well known and a trusted company in Japan for their rice cookers and air pots. Originally, Ms. Kawano was to purchase the IH rice cooker until our old Zojirushi rice cooker broke, but no matter how long she waited, it wouldn't break. In the end, she caved and bought it anyways so I gave the old rice cooker to my friend.
(Forgive me if this sounds like an over exaggerated product promotion post. I also realize $300 sounds like a lot for just a rice cooker, but I swear it changes lives especially if you eat a lot of rice.)