Once touted as a ‘must have’ in the late seventies early eighties kitchen slow cookers have been making a comeback in recent years.
Whether it is the recession busting energy saving, or the desire for a home cooked meal after a long working day, modern slow cooker manufactures are doing their best to shrug off the “squat brown pot lurking in a forgotten corner of the kitchen” image.
There is a plethora of websites out there with recipes for slow cooked delights promising to make a delicious meal out of the toughest, cheapest cuts of meat. Being a recent slow cooker convert myself I can attest to this and have found slow cooking a very forgiving cooking technique.
There is no need for vigilance, skill or precision! The magic of putting all the ingredients in, putting the lid on and leaving it to do its thing for eight hours or so and then being rewarded with a delicious meal is wonderful.
Cuts of meat which would have you chewing like a camel for 10 minutes with normal cooking techniques, are transformed into tender and melt in the mouth morsels.
Here's an example of a very simple recipe: Cut braising steak into chunks, or buy the ready cut version. Toss the pieces in seasoned flour. Brown in a frying pan along with some onion. While the meat is browning pop whatever vegetables you want into the pot; chopped carrots, parsnips, mushrooms, peas, small potato, in fact whatever you think will be tasty. Place the meat over the vegetables and then add stock to just below the level of the meat. Cover and leave for 8 hours on low setting and that’s it! So easy even I can do it and produce something delicious!