The kitchen gadget everyone should have - A Slow Cooker
This hub has been inspired by this weeks 'Weekly Topic' -Kitchen Tools and Utensils! I am a big home bird, especially when it comes to my kitchen. I love to cook when I have the time, and feeding my hubby, family and friends is one of my favourite pastimes.
Now when I thought about the topic of kitchen tools and utensils there was one major piece of kitchen equipment that jumped out at me. My favourite of all my kitchen gadgets is my Slow Cooker! I have had it about a year now and bought it second hand for only £15, an absolute bargain! It is definitely one of the most used items I have in my kitchen, and probably one of the most versatile items in all honesty, I cook so much in it!
What is a slow cooker and how does it work?
A slow cooker is exactly what it sounds like! It cooks stuff slowly! Its primarily a large self heating stock pot except you can cook almost anything in it, and it will (almost) never burn or overcook! It is a truly amazing invention.
You just put all your ingredients in (sometimes meats need to be pre browned), turn the cooker on to low or high, and leave them to cook for 4-10 hours. It is great if you work all day, or know your going to be home late but wont want to cook. It is especially good for stews, casseroles and soups. But you can make almost anything in it - cook a whole chicken, make deserts, meatloaf or even a pulled pork.
The pros and cons
First of all there aren't any cons I can possibly think of!
Having a slow cooker has definitely helped us eat more healthily. I put on healthy casseroles in the morning so we don't end up eating as many ready meals, take outs or convenience foods. It is a real god send honestly.
You are able to use up fridge leftovers and all the extra left over veg easily. I often just look what's in the fridge and cupboard and bung it all in the slow cooker, with some tinned beans and some meat if I have any to make a healthy stew.
You can even make meals from frozen. There is a whole movement around pre preparing all the ingredients of a meal and then freezing them all, so you can do a whole weeks worth of meals in one day. Then all you have to do it bung it in the cooker each morning, its so easy!
No more slaving over the cooker for hours, you can leave it on its own, and just come back to a yummy hot meal.
How I rate the Russell Hobbs 3.5L Slow Cooker
Here are some of my Slow Cooker Recipes
- Slow Cooker Recipes - Poor Man's Cassoulet Recipe - ...
poor mans sausage cassoulet - yummy, cheap and family friendly sausage casserole recipe. Can be made in the slow cooker or in the over. Simple and filling on a budget!
- Slow Cooker Recipes - How to make Lamb Tagine in the...
A simple yummy recipe for a lamb tagine in the slow cooker! Its easy, its yummy, its healthy and its cheap (ish!) This gives you a great aromatic sweet moroccan stew that can be served over couscous, rice or vegetables.
- Slow Cooker Recipes - Lamb with Figs Recipe for the ...
A great ethnic recipe for Lamb and Fig Tagine made in the Slow Cooker. This rich dish is great served with couscous, and will be a brilliant way to get new ingredients into your kids. The lamb is very tender thanks to the slow cooking and the dish is
- Slow Cooker Recipes - Best Sausage Casserole Recipe ...
The best, most filling sausage casserole/cassoulet recipe for the slow cooker. Yummy and fairly healthy, guaranteed to be a big hit with all the family.
- Slow Cooker Recipe - How to cook a ham - Baked Ham i...
How to cook a ham in a slow cooker. Cooking a ham in Coca-Cola or Coke then baking the ham in a lovely sticky aromatic glaze, it is a great yummy dish that the whole family will enjoy and will be perfect served hot or cold
Now I can only vouch for my amazing slow cooker, which like I said is a Russell Hobbs, but I assume most slow cookers are the same, and as they all pretty much sdo the same thing I should think most brands are just as good as each other.
The only think I would say is if you plan on buying one, make sure you get one with a capacity big enough for you and your family. If you have a family of 5 a 2.4 or 3.5 litre probably wont be big enough. I have a 3.5 and although you can sometimes get dishes for 4 people out of it, it is more suited to full dishes for 2-3 people, but it will make enough of a side dish for lots! You get my drift.