How To Use A Slow Cooker
A slow cooker that one appliance that you will never want to miss in your kitchen because it just makes cooking simple whether you want to prepare soups, dessert, meat and really creamy oats, this tool will always have you served. Using a slow cooker is extremely easy and saves a lot of time so on those days when you just cannot miss home cooked food but have less time to prepare it then simply do it with a slow cooker. Lately most of the slow cookers have been advanced with features compared to the first slow cookers but one thing is for sure their functionality will never change, it is always the same old procedure that you should follow when using a slow cooker. Try out my simple ways of using a slow cooker if it is your first time for the healthiest home cooked meals.
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- Rightly place the slow cooker on your counter: much as it is okay to leave the slow cooker alone on the counter as you attend to whatever else you want to attend to you must put some considerations into mind. The slow cooker should be a distance away from the walls and anything else that you place on your counter since it tends to produce some heat from the sides. If you happen to have a cooling rack then even much better to place it there otherwise even putting direct on the counter is fine.
- Have your slow cooker recipe ready: with biggest advantage with cooking in a slow cooker is that its recipes do not require too much preparation, you however need to do it prior the process to make things much faster for you. Vegetables should be sliced or chopped, remove any fat from the meat if your so require, go ahead and brown the meat and then add seasoning as per needed by your recipe.
- Place your ingredients into the slow cooker: as you put ingredients into the slow cooker keep in mind that food will best cook if it is not full to maximum, it is best advises to only fill to either half way or three quarters. You should layer foods as per instructions in your recipe so that and if you must add any liquid then it should not be too much reason being in a slow cooker liquid are almost unnecessary.
- Cover up with the lid: the effectiveness of a slow cooker largely depends on stable temperature all through the process which can only be achieved if the lid has tightly been fitted onto the slow cooker. The moment the lid leaves space for steam to escape then food will not cooks as perfectly as it should, in fact to be on a safer side you should first wrap aluminum foil over the cooker so that you are sure that everything has been perfectly sealed in.
- Switch the slow cooker on: cooking temperature in a slow cooker is 210 degrees for all the slow cookers so all you have to do is select the right setting for whatever you want to prepare. The higher setting which takes between six to ten hours cooks food at a faster speed while the lower setting which takes between eight to ten hours cooks food at a slower rate so you choose your timer depending on how much time you have to wait for food to get ready.
- Leave food to cook: this is the most effortless bit about using cooking in a slow cooker, you just have to sit back and wait for food to get ready. Even checking on food is not called for reason being you simply are interrupting the process, each time you open the lid heat evaporates from the cooker making the process, longer than it would have been.
- Add in any preferred ingredients at the end:all foods that tend to cook very fast should be added into the slow cooker about 20 to 3o minutes towards the end of the cooking process. That includes foods like pasta, corn starch and any other vegetables that cook very fast. At most you should only open the lid 60 minutes towards the end of your cooking process. Besides that there is surely no need for you to keep checking on the food in a slow cooker.
- Serve and store food correctly: as soon as the cycle is done endeavor to either serve cook immediately or turn the slow cooker into warming mode if it does not do that automatically otherwise you might end serving over cooked food that has already lost its taste. If you have one of those advanced slow cookers that warm food automatically after the warming cycle then you are lucky as it will preserve for you.
Tips for using a slow cooker
- Get rid of all fat: when using a slow cooker it is very unnecessary to add oil to a slow cooker in fact you must remove all fat from meat to avoid finding your food all soaked in oil. Your food will come out best without any oil, it will taste better and in any case it is much better for your health.
- Only use a reasonable amount of liquid: because the slow cooker performs with the lid snugly fitted adding too much liquid is simply a waste of time as it will not evaporate. Just a little liquid over the meat and vegetables is enough to make your food as ready as you want.
- The lower setting is the best: I perfectly understand that you will not always have the time to wait for food for the long hours it takes to get ready on a lower setting however best advice is that the lower setting is the best. The gentle heat that comes from a lower setting best brings out the flavors in your food.
- Do not tamper with the slow cooker: as soon as you turn it on to cooking food, then you should stay away. In slow cooker heat is very important as the more you check up on it heat will be evaporating therefore you should leave it alone until the hours of cooking are completely done.
- Try cooking onions before throwing them in: the flavor of onions prepared out of the cooker is much better than that of food prepared inside the slow cooker.