Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

Jenni
Bento-ing from: Marietta › Georgia › USA
Joined: 17 Nov 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 43 weeks ago.

I just got a new rice cooker- Aroma's ARC-856- and it arrived just in time for me to make my sister's birthday cake, even allowing a couple of days for experimentation. This is a 6 cup cooker with no dedicated cake function, but it does have Aroma's version of "fuzzy logic" and multiple rice settings, as well as steam cook and 1 hour and 2 hour slow cook settings, and a delay timer. Has anyone ever made a cake in a similar type of cooker? If I use a mix, do I need to halve it? I don't want to blow up my brand new cooker on the first try!

This is the rice cooker I got: http://www.amazon.com/Aroma-ARC-856-Digital-Cool-Touch-Steamer/dp/B0002O...

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Jenni
Bento-ing from: Marietta › Georgia › USA
Joined: 17 Nov 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 43 weeks ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

53 views in the hour or so since I posted this? I guess I'm not the only one interested in the subject. :) Here are the results of my first failed experiment:

For my first experiment I decided to try a lazy semi-vegan (not 100% sure about one ingredient in the mix) spice cake. Which means I emptied a box of Duncan Hines Spice Cake mix into a bowl and dumped a can-minus-a-sip of cream soda into it. Whisk whisk whisk out all the lumps and then poured about half (which I think ended up being closer to 2/3) into the lightly oiled rice cooker pot. I then cooked it on the 1 hour porridge/slow cook setting, and when I came back to check it wasn't quite done, so I gave it another 20 minutes or so on the steam cook setting. A toothpick came out clean, so I took the bowl out and set it on an oven mitt to cool. When I inverted the pot over a plate, the cake pretty much crumbled, mostly because most of the top if it stuck to the pot. Oops. I'm not sure if this is because I didn't use quite enough oil on the pot, or if I cooked it on the wrong setting, or if I didn't let it cool down enough. Or it's possible the lazy vegan cake is just a bit too fragile for this method- though it does make great cupcakes!

I've just started the second half of the mix cooking. This time I sprayed the pot liberally with PAM and set it on the steam cook setting. Once it is done I will try to let it sit longer, and we'll see how this turns out...

Cheryl
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

If you don't have a problem baking from scratch, you might want to try a Wacky Cake recipe rather than the cake mix + soda version. Wacky Cake is milk and egg free, and a little denser than what you're trying.

I've never had luck turning the cake mix + soda cakes out of pans... they're just too fragile.

You might want to consider trying to get your hands on a toaster oven. I had reasonably good luck baking cakes, cookies and brownies in a toaster oven as long as they were small batches.

heidi
Bento-ing from: NYC
Joined: 30 Jul 2010
User offline. Last seen 4 years 1 day ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

a little note I hope may help --

vegetable glycerine is a sweet substance used as a humectant, a 'moisture-maker/keeper' in baked goods. I'd try substituting up to 3/4 of the sweetener (sugar, whatever) in a cake recipe with 1/2 the volume of veg gly. It really does make a difference in moisture, and the taste is virtually identical to sugar. Unlike sugar, it actually lowers blood sugar levels, so I really don't know why it isn't used universally in diabetics' "sweets."

Jenni
Bento-ing from: Marietta › Georgia › USA
Joined: 17 Nov 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 43 weeks ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

Well, the second cake would have come out a little better, cooked twice on the steam cook setting, but this time only half of it came out of the pot, while the other half stuck firmly inside. Maybe next time, if I ever feel like bothering with this again, I'll just stick a whole stick of butter in there. >:[

My sister's birthday is coming up in a couple of days, and I have been given cake making duty, so I really hope someone can tell me what I'm doing wrong!!!

another_amanda
Bento-ing from: › USA
Joined: 12 Aug 2009
User offline. Last seen 2 years 48 weeks ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

I've never tried baking in my rice cooker before, but I'll try and help!

Unless you're an experienced vegan baker or you're baking for vegans, I would suggest sticking with non-vegan recipes. I'm an inexperienced vegan baker, and my vegan cakes are usually dry. Whenever I watch Food Network cake competitions, the judges usually have a problem with vegan cakes being too dry and crumbly (tough to make perfectly under pressure, perhaps?).

Does your rice cooker have a steamer basket? You could try a steamed cake. I tried this recipe one time:
http://wlteef.blogspot.com/2005/11/black-sesame-steamed-cupcakes.html
Silicone cups work great in a steamer, and supposedly small metal pans work too. I imagine that if you tried steaming the boxed mix as cupcakes it would work well, but I haven't tried it so I can't confirm.

It looks like Recipezaar has some excellent steamed cake recipes.
http://www.food.com/recipe-finder/all/steamed-cake
If you'd prefer a spice cake, then some English pudding recipes would be great candidates, and there is discussion of similar cakes in the mushi pan thread:
http://justbento.com/forum/mushi-pan-variations-dough-and-topping
http://www.justhungry.com/2004/03/mushipan_steame.html
I imagine that by baking straight in the body of the cooker, you'll face the problem of the bottom burning before the middle has set.

This website recommends a rice cooker with a "cake" setting and says that normal rice cookers have too much instant heat to successfully bake in them (but it also has some tasty-looking recipes):
http://happyhomemaker88.wordpress.com/2008/01/22/amazing-rice-cooker-cho...

Here's a page with sponge cake advice:
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080321224922AA1FGm8

Most of these people have rice cookers with "bake" buttons:
http://www.soompi.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=230477

I hope there's something helpful in here. I've made English fig pudding and Christmas pudding, and though both had to steam for several hours on the stove, they always turn out excellent.

maki
admin
Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
User offline. Last seen 30 min 6 sec ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

Just an idea...but maybe try lining the rice cooker pot with some kitchen parchment paper, then greasing that? Perhaps the inside surface of the pot is not quite non-stick? I don't have any experience with that particular rice cooker, but the couple of times I've tried making a cake-like thing in mine it's come out fine with just a little oiling.

____________________________________

The Big Onigiri.

- Wherever you go, there you are. -

Jenni
Bento-ing from: Marietta › Georgia › USA
Joined: 17 Nov 2009
User offline. Last seen 3 years 43 weeks ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

It's entirely possible that the vegan cake really is just too fragile. I'm not fully vegan- just a vegetarian who strongly prefers vegan food and finds the concept of eggs and dairy rather gross, but does eat them in small amounts in other foods sometimes. I guess for the birthday cake I might have to cave in and use eggs. Eew. ;)

Maki, the parchment paper is a good idea. I think I'll try that if just a good thick layer of margarine doesn't work on the next one.

In my price range, I had the choice of this cooker, or a larger 10 cup Sanyo with a cake button. The Sanyo was the big round type and was all stainless steel with black accents... and I just *hated* the look of it. I purchased this one from a certain very large retailer whose name is synonymous with evil solely because of its easy return policy. So if it is not just user error and this cute little cooker just doesn't work properly, I do have the option of returning it and getting the larger and possibly "better" cooker, though from a different seller with a little more complicated return policy. I have to admit that I also like the little pod look that makes people stop and ask "What *is* that?!?"

Steamed cakes sound really good, too, and are on my to-do list, but I don't have my own kitchen because I had to move back in with my parents who have informed me that I do not live here and have no rights whatsoever, so I have to keep things to a minimum. They've always ridiculed everything I do, just as they did when they came home early and walked in on my first rice cooker cake experiment. I'm tempted to tell my grandmother she'll just have to heat her oven up, and the house along with it, because I'm not going to subject myself to their crap any more. Actually... anyone have any tips for setting up a bedroom kitchenette? :)

Huiyi
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

I used to frequently bake cakes in my rice cooker but I'm not vegan or anything, so I'm not sure how much this will help.... I found that if your pot has a non-stick coating, coating it with butter or any oil made it stick worse... or in some cases, even burn. I use a very old-school 8 cup rice cooker... the kind that has one button with no fancy settings. If it helps any, I press the cook button, let it run it's course and wait about 20 minutes before hitting the cook button again. It usually takes about an hour and a half or so... time varies each time I'm afraid. I use the entire cake mix box and follow the directions.

Some photos of how my cakes turn out:

and a chocolate one...

maki
admin
Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
User offline. Last seen 30 min 6 sec ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

Wow, those are seriously impressive looking cakes!

Amanda
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

Hey Girl,
So 1. I have no clue how a experienced vegan cooker can't bake moist vegan cupcakes or cakes. I'm a vegan and I love to bake but if you asked me to make up my own recipe I would laugh at you. Nonetheless, my vegan cupcakes and cakes fly off the plate at parties. Vegan is actually better for baking, when it does not come out of a box!! You should check out: Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, a cook book by too very proudly unslim vegan cheifs. I make their carrot cake cupcakes, so simple and so delicious. You could probably find a vegan cake recipe for them. Vegan cake shouldn't be any more fragile, it should actually be more moist and more compatible with the process. The products used in vegan baking are simply that much better for the artform.

ANYWAYS I am currently live in Japan and heartbroken over the lack of ingredients to make my delicious cupcakes. Nonetheless, there are no ovens here

maki
admin
Bento-ing from: somewhere › France
Joined: 24 Jan 2007
User offline. Last seen 30 min 6 sec ago.
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

I am in Japan (Yokohama) right now, and just baked a cake in an oven yesterday. There sure are ovens here! They may not be as ubiquitous in all home kitchens as they are in the west, but most people I know have either an oven, or much more commonly a combination convection-microwave oven. Baking is very popular in Japan. Furthermore, all kinds of baking ingredients are available too...though you may have to search them out. (Many are available from specialists online if you are not near a major metropolitan area.)

Susan Bishop
Re: Help baking a cake in a rice cooker.

Use baking paper in the bottom and it will come out easily. I have an old school cooker and I need to press cook 4 times and set a timer for 15 minutes each time. It turns out great. Cake mixes work best but I'm going to try a lemon chiffon cake that might work. Heavy cakes don't work well. Good luck.

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