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Slow cooker - it's all gone wrong

(13 Posts)
TheSkiingGardener Mon 19-Sep-11 19:47:39

Happily added my ingredients this morning. 400g stewing steak, a tin of tomatoes, loads of veg and a int of stock and was looking forward to hearty deliciousness this evening.

I've got a watery stew full of not-soft-eough-veg and hard nuggets of beef.

Where did it all go wrong!!!!!!

stripygiraffe Mon 19-Sep-11 19:48:27

Did you turn it on?

AngryFeet Mon 19-Sep-11 19:52:41

Same thing happened to me. You can thicken the sauce up with cornflour but you probably used too much stock. The beef if it is cubed takes a lot less time I think. I did mine for 8 hours but I think 5 would have been enough. Lamb works far better. Also if the beef you used was a good cut with little to no fat it will come out chewy.

SecretNutellaFix Mon 19-Sep-11 19:55:39

too much liquid.

Halve the amount of stock it tells you to add, especially with tinned tomatoes in the mix.

Fairyloo Mon 19-Sep-11 19:59:21

What settings do you have?

I have high low and auto and always use auto and everything comes out perfect

TheSkiingGardener Mon 19-Sep-11 20:44:22

It was on thank you stripygiraffe <sniffs>

I may have switched it on and off a couple of times mind when I was trying to work out why the toaster wasn't working at lunchtime.

Anyway, it was on Auto, until the whole switching off thing, when I put it on Low.

I thickened it up with some flour and water Angryfeet. The beef though was hard when I checked it after 5-6 hours. Maybe it was too lean but it surprised me that it was so tough.

I shall reduce the stock next time, taking into account tomatoes, I hadn't accounted for that, and see what happens. But after 8 hours vegetables should not be al dente.

Thanks for all the help.

IwishIwasmoreorganised Mon 19-Sep-11 20:47:09

The veg needs to be chopped all the same size, and I always put it at the bottom.

I agree re: not too much stock, and cheaper cuts of meat always come out nicest.

Better luck next time!

TheSkiingGardener Mon 19-Sep-11 20:58:38

Why does the veg have to be the same size? I would have thought the heat would permeate in all that time. Although thinking about it, the carrot and parsnip were about the same.

Serves me right for buying good stewing steak!

ColdSancerre Mon 19-Sep-11 21:01:34

Veg apparently takes longer to cook than meat, so said whichever chef was on here about slow cookers. Same size so it cooks evenly, on the bottom so it gets most heat.

TheSkiingGardener Mon 19-Sep-11 21:27:21


<learns something new>

<gets excited>

Thank you. I'll look up the web chat.

lukewarmmama Wed 21-Sep-11 13:27:06

Definitely much less liquid, way less than half - we often omit the stock altogether, and just rely on eg one carton of passata for the liquid. The veg will give out more liquid than you think (once they're cooked!).

TheWorldKeepsSpinning Wed 21-Sep-11 14:00:17

Find actual slow cooker recipes and follow them.
There are a few good books around.
I just got the Ant Worral Thompson one and tried the thai chicken recipe. It still came out a bit too watery for me though but was nice enough on a day that I was out all day and wouldn't have cooked anything.

valiumredhead Sun 25-Sep-11 14:26:12

The SC will make its own liquid so you need stock but probably only half a mug full, I don't even cover whatever I am cooking. when I do a gammon I only put in about a TBS of water.

Chop up your veg all the same size as mentioned before.

Try again! grin

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