A Kamado-san is a Donabe rice cooker that’s meticulously crafted from the clay of Japan’s Iga region. This porous clay is known for its high absorbency and heat retention properties. The heavy clay pots are treated with a special glaze and finished with a double lid, which circulates steam and has the effect of pressure cooking. The result is shiny, fluffy, gently heated rice that cooks evenly without compromising the moisture of the rice, explains Naoko Moore, founder of Toiro.
A native of Tokyo now living in Los Angeles, Naoko is on a mission to introduce Kamado-san to the U.S. and share the Japanese method for superior rice. She’s also introducing a classic-style Donabe, called Hakeme, which is ideal for making soups and stews; braising; or cooking tabletop dishes such as shabu shabu and sukiyaki. The high heat resistance of Iga clay lets you cook with Donabe directly over the flame of a gas cooktop or in the oven.
The name of Naoko’s company, Toiro, means “ten colors” in Japanese and is often used in the phrase “junin toiro” (“ten people, ten colors”). Loosely translated, it’s similar to the American expression “different strokes for different folks” and reflects Naoko’s goal to have many people enjoy Japan’s traditional Donabe cooking in many different ways.