Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Return of the slow cooker

I dragged it out today from the depths of the cupboard where it has been hibernating through spring and summer. Unfortunately in our part of the country right now we are having a late heatwave which I didn't cater for in my menu planning this week. This week's menu consists of bakes, a roast, a curry and two I am now having to re-assess that plan...

But I thought if I could do the roast in the slow cooker then it might not heat up the kitchen quite so much. I haven't tried this before but fortunately the internet is your best friend in these situations. Within five minutes of Google searching I had found a recipe and the lamb (a 2kg leg seasoned with garlic and rosemary) has been cooking since about 9.30 this morning, sitting on top of five balls of scrunched up tin foil so it doesn't stew in its own juices.

It smells AMAZING. Hopefully it will taste as good as it smells. I decided to ditch the idea of roast potatoes and have boiled up potatoes to make potato salad. Some corn, some lettuce and tomatoes and we are having roast lamb and salad for dinner tonight.

Minimal effort. Minimal time spent in kitchen on boiling hot day. Maximum enjoyment.


Meredith said...

I am nearly convinced by blogdom to give slow cookers another go. So much so that I bought a Women's Weekly slow cooker recipe book today.

I had one. I followed the instructions and found broiled meat in lots of liquid at the end of the day.

So...what brand should one buy, what of that instruction to fill to the line with liquid and any other great tips or suggestions to continue convincing me that I should try again...


Karen said...

Well, I am no expert....but I have a Ronson 6.5L cooker. That is big enough for most roasts and to do a large casserole that might last a couple of nights. I got it for about $50 at Target (they go on special sometimes).

From what I can tell, you need to use lots less liquid than for conventional casseroles. So much less that it looks wrong and I am continually falling into the trap of adding a bit more that then makes it a bit too much.

For the lamb roast, the foil balls seemed to work really well to stop it stewing. Some people suggest using an upturned saucer for the same purpose but I thought that would be too hard to clean so I followed someone else's idea of using the foil balls. Then I could just chuck them afterwards.

I certainly don't use mine as much as what it sounds like some people do. Even in winter, it would probably be once a week, if that. More often would be highly unusual....