Investing in a slow cooker will always turn out to be a good thing. These kitchen wonders will help you make a dish that will be savory, healthy, and will practically make itself.
You know the name – now what does it actually do?
This kitchen appliance is used to simmer food at a lower temperature compared with regular cooking. You can use it to cook meals that won’t require your attention for hours. Slow Cookers use the moist heat to cook up your meal, and they can be used to cook a various range of meals.
To put it simply, instead of putting your soup in a pot on a stove, adding the ingredients gradually and constantly checking on it to not boil, you can put all of that in a Slow Cooker, put the lid on and wait for it to be ready!
Slow Cooker – components and how to
Slow Cookers (often called crock pots – which is not entirely correct) are made out of 3 parts. The base that you plug in and is composed out of durable plastic and stainless steel, the removable ceramic pot that goes into the base, and the lid.
They differ from brand to brand, some of them having programs for different foods, some having an auto setting that turns them off, and so on. All Slow Cookers have different heat settings, which you can manually adjust or get them automatically set by selecting a type of dish you want to prepare.
Should you have one in your kitchen?
Well, that depends. As you noticed from the name, the whole process is slow. So if you have a dynamic lifestyle, and not very much time for cooking, this might be the right appliance for you. You can put your dish and turn on the Slow Cooker and go out to handle your daily chores, while it does the job. However, if you like to get engaged in your food making process more, it might not be a suitable choice at it requires minimum attention after the lid is closed. So it all depends how you prefer it.
Based on the type of dish you are making, the cooking time can vary from 20 minutes to 6 hours, even more. Unlike other appliances (like the pressure cooker), the Slow Cooker takes a lot of time to get the food and ambient temperature to an optimum so the dish can get cooked. It is sometimes recommended that you only use a Slow Cooker to make foods that require ingredients to be chopped finely so they are made evenly.
Choosing your Slow Cooker requires a lot of thinking
They also come in different sizes, even in travel friendly shapes. If you have room in your kitchen, you are a lucky person. However, for a small kitchen, a more compact Slow Cooker can be best suited.
Also, bear in mind that some Slow Cookers are multi-purposed, allowing them to steam, brown and sauté. Just keep an eye out on the cooker’s specifications.