Rice Cooker Science and the Latent Heat of Vaporization

Doesn’t work as I expected. Boringly fascinating if you have 12 minutes to kill :banana:

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I follow this youtuber as well. Most rice cooker Taiwan needs water on the outer layer though, so according to him that’s an even older design than the one in the video. These days many people get the more advanced electronic kind from Japanese brands that also works differently.

I’ve always wondered how that worked! I assumed it was a common-or-garden bimetallic strip in thermal contact with the actual pot (I’m guessing that’s how @hansioux’s pot works) but I must say the magnet thing is fiendishly clever.

Incidentally, I’m currently wading through Enrico Fermi’s book on thermodynamics. Required reading for anyone who wants to be a hardcore nerd and/or make YouTube videos about rice cookers.

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Tatung FTW!


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There’s also Kolin

and Wanngwo

The reason why Taiwan never moved away from this design might be because Taiwanese are used to cooking soup and other stuff in this type of rice cooker instead of just rice.

I’ll always use the double pot design. So much more versatile. Can make rice to my precise specifications, steam a bun, slow cook a little Cornish hen in broth, steam eggs, make egg pudding, heat leftovers…the Datong cooker is as much a member of my family as anyone else, really. I kinda think of it as a nanny considering the hand it had in raising me.


I’ve got a big old US-market dry-pot design, used mainly for slow cooking chilis, stews, etc. Sometimes I start stuff in a regular pot, or a skillet, then transfer it. Only two heat levels: Boil, and Keep Warm. So you hit the start button when going to bed, and then again in the morning when off to work, and come home to a slow cooked stew that’s been on the simmer for 20 hours. Yummy.

I must try to make a slow-cooked Chinese chicken soup one day. At least while it’s winter, anyway.

Thanks for the suggestion, Hanna!

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When I first arrived in Taiwan, I often heard folks wax poetic about their Datong rice cookers. I didn’t understand the fascination. Then later I got one myself, and now I feel like you. I can cook so many things in that little machine!

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They did it again. A combined curry and rice cooker.

And “each cooking pot’s compartment also has space to insert a steamer tray, thus allowing you to simultaneously cook four different things.”


And another Japanese rice cooker creation

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