Do you know what a slow cooker is, or have you ever tried it? Well, if not, it’s time you do. But first, answer this question. Have you ever tasted that juicy meat, pot meal, or hot soup? Well, there’s a possibility it was cooked using a slow cooker.
The slow cooker takes time to cook the food but brings out the juicy flavor too. Are you intrigued and want more insights? Refer to the info below. We have gathered detailed insights about a slow cooker, which might help you understand what it is.
What is a Slow Cooker?
As the name suggests, a slow cooker is a cooking appliance that takes more time than usual to cook the food. These appliances work slow and can take up to ten hours to cook a meal. Slow cookers are the opposite of pressure cookers, known to cook in a really fast manner.
The slow cookers are generally made of ceramic, porcelain, or metal. These cookers are surrounded by an electrical unit that has a heating element. Some cookers have heating elements all over their sides, and some have it just at the bottom of the pot.
How Does a Slow Cooker Works?
A slow cooker uses very low heat to cook the food. The appliance is sealed to reduce moisture evaporation. It is better to make the stews, soups, and sauces using a slow cooker and not dried items like baked goods or roasts.
Even though slow cookers take a lot of time to cook the food properly, it still consumes less energy or power than an oven. This is how a slow cooker is designed to work. Most of the slow cookers have three options or settings that are low, high, and off. You can set them according to the dish you are cooking.
Depending on the brand, the slow cooker may turn off and on the heat. This is done to maintain the constant heat temperature required to cook the food. This way, it consumes less energy and thus saves your money.
When the items are cooked at a low temperature, the flavors and spices seep deeper into the main dish, such as the meat. The flavors seep even into the tough cuts of meat and make it delicious and tender. The slow cooker works based on time and wattage combination. When turned on, the electric coil gets heated up.
This coil indirectly transfers the heat from the outer casing to the space between the container and the base wall. This heat heats up the crock in between the temperature of 180-300° Fahrenheit. This is how the ingredients in the cookers get cooked slowly.
As the food cooks, it releases steam, which is trapped by the lid. Here, condensation occurs, which makes a seal between the rim of the crock and the lid and provides moisture to the ingredients in the slow cooker.
How to Use a Slow Cooker?
Each slow cooker has it’s own manual, but the basic steps are almost the same. Let us talk about the right way of using a slow cooker.
Preparation – Slow cookers ask for very little preparation. You need to do cut the vegetables and meat into smaller pieces and preheat the cooker.
Loading – The root vegetables take more time to be cooked. This is why they must be placed in the center of the cooker. Ingredients placed in the center will cook faster. The meat should be placed on the top, followed by some liquid. Slow cookers require some sort of liquid to cook; otherwise, the food might dry out. Broths, sauces, hot water, stocks are the most commonly used liquids while cooking in a slow cooker.
Cooking – Once all the ingredients are ready and are put in the cooker, the next step is to set the temperature. The high temperature must be set for a shorter period of time and hollow temperature for a longer period. You can leave the food in the slow cooker by simmering it until you are completely free and ready to eat.
Cleaning – The best part of using a slow cooker is there is not a lot of washing or cleaning required. You should prefer a slow cooker that has a removable heating pot. When it’s time to clean it, remove the pot and fill it with hot, soapy water for some time. Leave to soak and then dry the pot completely. Never put cold water into the pot while cleaning as it might crack.
How is a Pressure Cooker Different From a Slow Cooker?
It’s interesting how a slow cooker and a pressure-cooked are completely different from each other based on how they operate and still similar in what they make or accomplish.
A slow cooker usually takes around 8-10 hours to cook the food, whereas a pressure cooker can cook the same meal in a matter of a few minutes. A pressure cooker will give you the same flavorful cooking, just like the slow cooker.
You have to be extremely organized while using a slow cooker. As a slow cooker takes time to cook the food, the ingredients have to be ready in the morning so that when you come back from work, the meal is cooked. This is why people use slow cooker only on particular occasions.
When it comes to a pressure cooker, you can quickly get the ingredients ready, as it generally takes minutes to cook the meal. Unlike a slow cooker, there is no rush of getting the meal ready in the morning itself in the case of a pressure cooker.
The slow cooker is a great device, provided you know what it is used for. If you are not fully aware of something, you cannot make the most of it. The same is the case with a slow cooker. It can help you cook those tender, juicy, and expensive meals at your own comfort. Isn’t it amazing?
Yes, it takes too much time to cook the food, but it’s worth it. If you think the above info was useful, please share it with others in need. We’ll keep up with similar content, so keep coming back for more.