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Slow cooker - where am I going wrong?

(29 Posts)
SockQueen Sat 13-Jun-15 14:05:44

We got given a Crock Pot for Christmas, and I've been tinkering around with various curries/stews/chilli since then. We've had one total disaster, though that was mostly because I put in too much asafoetida, and no great successes - so far everything has worked ok but tasted a bit "thin" compared with doing it on the hob/in the oven. I think I might be putting in too much liquid but it's hard to tell!

Anyone got any handy tips and/or fail-safe recipes I could try?

dreamingofsun Sat 13-Jun-15 14:27:02

use your usual recipe for curry or chilli but don't add any liquid at all. this will look rediculously dry but will be fine. if it really is too dry towards the end, just add a couple of tablesoonfulls of boiling water.

if i'm doing a curry i will often base it on a tin of toms, curry paste/powder, meat/veg/oiions and again no liquid other than dollop of chutney.

HelenF350 Sat 13-Jun-15 15:41:27

You need to use less liquid as the temperature is lower so it doesn't cook off as much. You can use cornflour to thicken stews or tomato purée or coconut cream block to thicken curries also if that helps at all?

987flowers Sat 13-Jun-15 22:44:24

Best thing for the slow cooker is buying a shoulder of pork, lay on some bacon, stab the pork and shove in some garlic and add salt and a gulf of apple juice. Leave for 8 hours on low. Amazing!!!

987flowers Sat 13-Jun-15 22:44:57

Glug not gulf!!!!

CaTsMaMmA Sat 13-Jun-15 22:50:24

use less liquid and more seasoning

and i don't care what anyone else says, sweat off the onions/celery and brown the meat before putting it in....it DOES make a difference.

other than that get to know how hot your cooker is...they all vary and it helps to know if your bolognaise will need all day, or be done in 3 hours! grin

sashh Sun 14-Jun-15 07:52:56

Try putting a joint of meat or chicken in, on its own, no liquid.

Get a slow cooker cook book, try some of those recipes before adaptinig your own.

SummerHouse Sun 14-Jun-15 07:58:21

Diced lamb shoulder
Harico beans
Onions lots of
Tomatoes
Bunch of thyme
Whole bottle of rose

Its lovely. Vaguely bases on a rick stien recipe and often done in a slow cooker.

JadedAngel Sun 14-Jun-15 08:07:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RoganJosh Sun 14-Jun-15 08:10:49

I find I need to add a lot less liquid than I expect. I also think mine overlooks a bit if I follow the instructions or a separate recipe.

OpiesOldLady Sun 14-Jun-15 08:11:56

You need to get to know how your slow cooker works. All SC's are different.

Always use much less liquid then you think you'll need, and remember cornflour is your friend.

Oh and if you're on FB, then join Slow Cooked Wonders - it's an amazing resource for all things slow cooked - from your basic curries and stews, to cakes and puds to bread and jacket spuds and everything in between.

JadedAngel Sun 14-Jun-15 08:16:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

dementedpixie Sun 14-Jun-15 08:17:36

We prefer the pressure cooker to the slow cooker and it's faster too

trinitybleu Sun 14-Jun-15 08:19:06

with mine, the consistency as you turn it on, is the consistency at the end ... so no added water

JadedAngel Sun 14-Jun-15 08:21:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OpiesOldLady Sun 14-Jun-15 08:22:28

Jaded - there are over 700 recipes in the files section.

I guess you get out of it what you want really.

JadedAngel Sun 14-Jun-15 09:06:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SockQueen Sun 14-Jun-15 12:52:03

Thanks for the tips! The pork recipe sounds amazing, I'll give it a try at some point. I've not tried joints of meat so far, only casserole-type dishes. And I do brown the meat and onions first, but will try using less liquid and more seasoning.

I'll take a look at the FB group too, though I think I'm unlikely to start baking in it, quite happy with my oven for that!

HelenF350 Sun 14-Jun-15 13:08:16

An easy one for you. Beef stroganoff

Brown a chopped onion and 500g braising steak. Put in the slow cooker with a can of low fat condensed mushroom soup, the same volume of milk, a tablespoon or so of Worcester sauce and 300g chopped mushrooms. Cook on low for around 8-10 hours. An hour from the end add in 200g of garlic and herb cream cheese and stir.

Pointlessfan Sun 14-Jun-15 13:11:32

I do a nice curry with just a tin of coconut milk for the liquid, nothing else.

Wolfiefan Sun 14-Jun-15 13:16:01

There are some good slow cooker recipes in the MN cookbook! Allrecipesuk has a great slow cooked pork recipe (pork carnitas).
Sausage casserole and beef madras is also great.

JadedAngel Sun 14-Jun-15 14:42:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FrogGreen Sun 14-Jun-15 15:09:43

A good tip from Madhur Jeffrey is to use a few tbsp of ground almonds instead of cornflour to thicken curries/stews. Works better I think.

SillyStuffBiting Sun 14-Jun-15 15:14:06

Stews, chilli, Bolognese, curry (not a jar in sight) along with joints of pork, beef and lamb work really well.

yellowsnownoteatwillyou Sun 14-Jun-15 15:30:17

Less liquid is the key,
slow cooked wonders sometimes does have a lot of jars and packets used.
I can never be bothered putting stuff in the files but have put up lots of different stuff not a packet in sight.
I'm doing stew for steak pie today, but generally do currys, bolognese and chilli and meat loaf, and soups
I do roast pork or whole chickens aswell.
Also brilliant for making stock, if you do it over night.
The weirdest thing I've done in it was made a pizza, it was really hot in the house and I couldn't face putting the oven on.

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