Did you know that a lot of people end up hating a slow cooker just because they're not using it correctly? Sad, right? Don't let that happen to you!
The following guide consists of everything you need to know about these kitchen appliances, including slow cooker advantages and disadvantages, how to use one, and when to use one. All this information will help you use your crockpot the right way and get the maximum benefit out of it!
How To Use a Slow Cooker
- Don't open the lid until you're done cooking. Every time you remove the cover from the cooker, the steam releases. Doing this adds to your total cooking time, approximately 20 minutes every time you lift the top.
- Keep your cooker clean. After cooking, make sure you clean it in about an hour or so. Reheating food in your slow cooker is not a popular recommendation. Thus, it's better if you use the microwave or the stove for this purpose.
When to Use a Slow Cooker
Ideally, slow cookers are perfect for cooking cheap cuts like pork shoulder, beef brisket, chicken thighs, and lamb shoulder. Since slow cookers extract the meaty flavor from your dish, you can work well with less meat.
Slow Cookers and Different Types of Food
Slow Cookers And Water
Many people are confused about this, but you don't have to add water to the base since a slow cooker has coils under its core. These coils do the job of heating the cooker, and you needn't add hot water to its base.
Slow Cookers and Electricity
Slow cookers are surprisingly energy-efficient. A standard 3.5-liter cooker consumes approximately 1.3kW of power. For a cooking appliance, that's very impressive!
Slow Cookers and Health
Evidently, slow cookers are the healthiest and the most eco-friendly ways to cook. Whether you're cooking meat or vegetables, flame-broiling and grilling produce harmful chemical compounds, which is why their consumers have a higher risk of heart disease and cancer. Slow cookers, in contrast, are much healthier options.
Slow Cookers And Frozen Food
Expert recommendation by USDA is to place the meat in the refrigerator and let it thaw. Once it defrosts to an acceptable extent, you can start your slow cooker recipe.
Can You Slow Cook Overnight?
Slow cookers have a design specifically for cooking over extended periods, like overnight cooking. Thus, as long as you follow the manufacturer's directions and instructions, you can leave the cooker on overnight or while you're away from home.
Benefits of a Slow Cooker:
- Slow cookers are budget-friendly and exceptionally easier on the pocket.
- They're better for tender meats and tougher cuts.
- These cooking appliances are much more convenient and easy to use.
- Experts recommend slow cookers for poaching and braising and to cook low-fat recipes.
Drawbacks Of A Slow Cooker
- Slow cookers don't work for every recipe out there. You have to be very picky and specific about what you're cooking in it.
- Thanks to condensation, steam might end up diluting your flavors and spices. Thus, the food might become bland.