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Make columnist and kayak builder George Dyson sent us these photos (click to make big) from Wipke Iwersen, his boatbuilding friend who is on an extended visit to the Phillipines. George says: “This re-evolution of the electric rice cooker is brilliant, and new to me. Have you seen this? I love it!”

The rice cooker is filled with concrete apart from a hole in the middle, with a perforated bottom. In the hole they make a fire from coconut charcoal, and on top of the rice cooker the pan is placed. And what do they cook there? Yes, rice. Now you may think, oh, that’s for the people who have no electricity – but not at all! There is a new switch on the rice cooker, made from wood – and a fan installed in the bottom! When you put a piece of burning wood from the normal fire (next to the rice cooker) into the hole, and fill it up with charcoal, and switch “ON” , it takes about 20 seconds to have a perfect fire… really amazing. They call this thing “pressure cooker”.