Rice cooking is an essential part of Japan’s kitchen culture. More than other devices, the rice cooker illustrates its own transformation through technology. In the traditional Japanese household, cooking took place in the kamado, a kitchen space at the entrance with a fixed stove fueled by charcoal. By contrast, today’s rice cooker condenses the functions of energy provision, heating, cooking, and smoke extraction in one single technical device, transforming rice cooking into a more rapid, convenient, clean, and less space-demanding activity. The modern rice cooker is small, lightweight, portable, and easily replaceable, yet as opposed to the kamado it is also deterministic and monofunctional, challenging our understanding of what kitchen culture might be.
Malou MamatyVeronica ThorfveXiaohan Gao
Thing of Modernity – Mapping the Micro-geography of Everyday Environments