Slow cooker, often referred to as a crock pot, has been a favorite appliance for cooking delicious and healthy options. Unlike a standard cooker, it has some specific rules and regulations. These rules will help you prepare various recipes appropriately. Some cooking recipes may not be suitable for preparation using a slow cooker. Therefore, you have to make sure you choose recipes that are appropriate for such a device.
In this article, we will guide you through a stepwise method on how to use a slow cooker flawlessly. The following steps will help you get the job done without any difficulties.
How to Use a Slow Cooker
1. Preparing Method for the Slow Cooker In Advance
In most cases, a slow cooker will not require much preparation for cooking the meals for you. However, specific meal plans are going to require preparation. It applies to dishes that take more time to cook. Also, slow cooker recipes with many ingredients will also need initial preparation from you.
One of the top advantages of a slow cooker is that you do not need to attach or detach it frequently. You can start using the cooker by preheating the unit first. Meanwhile, you can chop and prepare the vegetables and meat in advance. You also need to keep all the dry herbs and spices ready to be added to the cooker. Do note that each recipe will have a specific time for adding the vegetables in the appliance.
2. Loading Method for Ingredients in a Slow Cooker
Certain vegetables or meat need to be added in a specific order to cook them properly in a slow cooker. For instance, vegetables with roots takes a lot of time to prepare. To get an ample amount of heat, you will need to place such vegetables at the bottom of the cooker as to cook them faster.
Similarly, for recipes involving meat, you need to add it on the top of the other ingredients. Furthermore, you will also need a fluid, such as water, to cook your meal in the slow cooker. This step is necessary so that the food in the cooker does not dry out. Some conventional fluids used in slow cooker recipes are wines, broths, sauces, boiling water, and stocks.
Remember that certain foods may not be able to handle the same level of heat as others. For instance, quick-cook veggies, seafood, and dairy products need to be added in the final hour of the cooking process, so that they do not disintegrate in the cooking process.
3. Cooking Recipes in the Slow Cooker
After loading all the ingredients in the slow cooker, in their proper order, you can set the appropriate temperature on the cooker. Slow cookers have an installed timer that lets you keep track of the meal being cooked, just like a microwave oven.
For meals that will take longer to cook, you can set a lower temperature. Similarly, for cooking quick meals, you can set the cooker at a higher temperature. A benefit of using such a device is that it has an adjustable setting for cooking meals. You can reduce its heat and let the food simmer for hours before you want to finish it and serve it on your plates to be eaten.
This way, you can keep the food warm and fresh for several hours without worrying about a thing. Another benefit of a slow cooking recipe is that the ingredients do not lose their nutritional value, as the heat supplied to them is balanced. With ample time, you can prepare your slow-cooked recipes with perfection. Do take care of the ingredients that you are using for the dish.
4. Cleaning the Cooker after Using
A benefit that you get by using a slow cooker is that the cleaning part is not as challenging as for other appliances. Most slow cookers accompany a detachable pot that you can take out of the electric covering and wash instantly.
After you are done with the cooking part, you can remove the pot and add some soapy water to it. Make sure that the water is hot, which will help remove any stain on the pot surface easily. Beware of using cold water in a pot that you just removed from the slow cooker device. It may lead to cracks on the pot’s surface.
If you want to clean the pot properly, then you need to add the hot water mixed with soap in it. After that, leave it to soak for some time. This process will soften the stains present on the surface, which can then be cleaned with tap water easily. Remember not to let the tap water fall directly on the pot’s surface. Use a soft utensil-cleaning wipe to remove the softened dirt from the pot’s surface. Once it has been cleaned, let it dry out naturally.
After that, place the container back in the slow cooker. You are all set to use it for more meals.
While each slow cooker has its features and components, their standard usage guideline is almost the same for every unit. To ensure that you use it ideally, stick to the recipes that are specifically instructed for using a crock pot. You may not get the same results if you are preparing a meal that is not meant for cooking using this device.
Hope you found the guide on how to use a slow cooker easy to comprehend.. For best results, follow the guide properly for preparing, loading, cooking, and cleaning.