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Slow cookers - are they a good investment?

(18 Posts)
Gateau Mon 28-Sep-09 11:19:49

Am toying with the idea of getting one of these. Looking at a recipe book I see you cook all the ingredients up first and then tranfe them to the slow cooker so I would have thought this was duplication of effort to some extent. Are they a waste of time or worth it? Do you find meals are cheaper with them because you can use cheaper cuts of meat?
Am starting mat leave next week so thought it would be a good idea to be able to prepare dinner when DC2 is sleeping (I hope!!)and also great to have warm, wholesome - and not too expensive - meals for winter nights.
Don't want to waste money on something we will not use much as with me on mat leave, we need every penny we can get!!
TIA

rubyslippers Mon 28-Sep-09 11:22:25

I love mine and use it a lot especially in the winter

i use it for soups, stews, bolognaise etc

you can get slow cookers which you can use on the hob and then move to to the warmer to finish cooking so no need for 2 pans

Haylstones Mon 28-Sep-09 11:25:36

I got one a few weeks ago and love it. I use it 3-4 times a week- I make bolognaise, soups, stews and cooked a gammon joint in it yesterday (was lovely).

The only thing I cook before putting in the SC is minced meat- meatballs, mince etc. I'm not sure if you HAVE to do this but I think it's nicer if it's browned first. Everything else just gets chucked in at onc- sausages, chicken, anything really!

FWIW, I bought a really cheap one (£10 from Morrisons and it is fab.

Gateau Mon 28-Sep-09 11:53:50

Thank for comments. I'll def get one then.

kiwibella Mon 28-Sep-09 12:14:11

we considered getting a crock-pot for ages... then picked one up at the boot sale. Sold grin. Actually, we don't use it that often but the sorts of things I do make in it do enough for another meal which goes in the freezer.

jenk1 Tue 29-Sep-09 21:24:20

ooh haylstones i got that one from morrybobs and have just used it tonight to make braised steak, it was gorgeous!!! smile

simpson Tue 29-Sep-09 22:13:23

I got mine from tescos direct for about $15 (sorry pound sign not working blush)

Is deffo worth its money is used 3 times a wk and have to confess am very lazy and don't brown anything before putting it in slow cooker, just chop up stuff and bung it in grin

Only mishap so far was a roast dinner where I put too much liquid/stock in and chicken a bit soggy blush

kiwibella Wed 30-Sep-09 13:22:49

How do you do a roast in a slow cooker?

Katisha Wed 30-Sep-09 13:26:18

Is it safe to leave them on all day while you are out at work?

Squishabelle Wed 30-Sep-09 13:35:55

Kiwi - sorry I meany roast the Sunday joint -not the whole roast!

pinknosedevereux Wed 30-Sep-09 18:35:08

Slow cookers only £7 in Asda!

simpson Wed 30-Sep-09 18:37:38

i leave mine on when I am out smile

differentID Wed 30-Sep-09 18:42:02

I love ours. have used it a fair bit already and only bought it in august. I did some batch cooking of mince which was fantastic- it was so much tastier than if I'd done it on the hob.

highhorse Wed 30-Sep-09 18:52:29

Love mine. I don't brown everything.. veg goes in as it is. Even if you do brown stuff, it doesn't take much effort. Do it in the morning, then switch on s/cooker and the hard work's done!

I think if you've got a baby, it would be a great idea - then when you're cream-crackered in the evening, the meal is done. Doesn't matter if it takes you 2 hours to do the preparing either - one carrot at a time!

Kiwibella - just stick your joint in and switch it on! Great for cheap cuts like lamb shoulder... mmmmmm. The meat just falls apart.

kiwibella Thu 01-Oct-09 14:09:59

really? I will (nervously) give it a go this weekend!

aubergenie Thu 01-Oct-09 17:59:01

We love our slow cooker. I think another advantage is that every scrap of meat comes off the bone so the meat goes further. I roasted a whole chicken in it the other day and it was lovely - the meat just fell off the carcass. We were able to make several meals with the meat, then I chucked the bones in the slow cooker with some veg and boiled it up for stock which I used in a risotto.

And if you make your stock in the slow cooker, it doesn't make you house smell like it does when you make it in a saucepan.

I've got a baby and I find it's great to be able to chuck everything in earlier in the day when he's happier to amuse himself or napping, rather than battling to cook dinner at grump o'clock with him hanging off my legs and crying!

Deemented Thu 01-Oct-09 18:12:15

Have to say, i love a saturday morning, when i've got something in the slow cooker, the house is relatively tiday, and i can sit back and watch Saturday Kitchen knowing that i don;t have to bother with dinner ect...

anothercoldcupoftea Wed 07-Oct-09 12:54:52

Just wondering - could you tell me why a slow cooker is better than a casserole dish on the hob/in the oven? I'm intrigued and quite keen to try one, but we haven't got space in our kitchen for another gadget that I might not use! thx

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