Minimum effort doesn’t mean minimum flavor.

A rice cooker is a handy kitchen appliance to have, since you can pair just about any main dish with a bowl of white rice. What’s even better, though, is when you can make a tasty meal entirely within the rice cooker itself, which is what we’re doing today.

We got this idea from the 7-Eleven Japan website, which shared a rice cooker recipe calling for its Seven Premium Gold Simmered Mackerel in Miso canned fish. Unfortunately, as the name implies, Seven Premium is 7-Eleven Japan’s more upscale store brand, and not all of its items are available in all the chain’s branches, and we weren’t able to track any down by dinner time.

But you know what you can find at just about any 7-Eleven branch? Their standard 7 Premium store-brand Simmered Mackerel in Miso.

Canned mackeral, or saba, as the fish is called in Japanese, has become sort of a trendy food for home chefs recently, so we weren’t put off by the non-Gold version. Plus, at 257 yen, it’s about half the price of the Seven Premium Gold version, so we used one hand to pat ourselves on the back for being frugal while we grabbed the rest of our necessary ingredients with the other.

Since we were using a slightly different kind of mackerel than the one specified in the 7-Eleven tweet, our cook/taste tester Anji Tabata made a few changes to the ingredient ratios, settling on:

● Rice (270 milliliters [9.1 ounces])
● Water (180 milliliters [6.1 ounces])
● Seven Premium Simmered Mackerel in Miso (1 can/190 grams [6.7 ounces])
● Butter (10 grams [0.4 ounces])
● Soy sauce

Step 1

Wash the rice, then let it soak in the 180 milliliters of water for 30 minutes. After that, add the entire contents of the mackerel can, both the fish and the broth.

Step 2

If your rice cooker has a takokomigohan (mixed rice and other ingredients) mode, set it to that. Let the mixture of rice, mackerel, and broth cook for 30 minutes.

Step 3

Once the cooking cycle has stopped, add the butter and also soy sauce to taste. Stir everything with a rice scoop or spoon to thoroughly mix the flavors and break up the larger pieces of fish.

Step 4

Plate the servings, and add any additional butter or soy sauce desired. And that’s all there is to it! Don’t let how easy it is to make fool you, though, because the results, Anji found, are delicious, full of rich umami flavor.

As if being quick, easy, and tasty wasn’t already reason enough to love this dish, there’s also the fact that it doesn’t require any quick-perishing ingredients – butter can last for months as long as you keep it in the fridge, and everything else you need can keep even longer. Stock up on a couple cans of mackerel, or maybe even any other kind of canned fish that goes well with buttery or salty seasonings, and you’ll be all set the next time you want to whip up a hot meal without having to go to the store or do more than a few minutes of prep work.

Reference: 7-Eleven Japan
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