The Joys of Cooking…. The Easy Way

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by Michelle
(Houston,Texas, USA)

Cooking is one of those pastimes that can either be seen as a hobby or a necessity. Many of us would love to have the time to put together a delicious, fancy meal that would taste great.

Unfortunately, however, the demands of our daily schedule often mean that we have to opt for food that is easy to prepare as well as tasty. In fact, this premise is what has created the entire fast food industry.

For those of us who are cooking on the run (but don’t want to eat fast food!), one of the most useful appliance is the crock pot. Thecrock pot, also known as a “slow cooker,” is essentially a device that will cook food slowly and thoroughly with no outside interference.

It is comprised of a metal or porcelain pot inside a metal housing containing an element with a thermostat. Depending on the make and variety, you can them with various temperature settings and timers and you can adapt the way they cook to your specific needs.

A crock pot is used to cook one-pot meals, such as a meat stew, making cooking very easy (and also very delicious). If you are on a busy schedule, this will revolutionize your life.

All you will need to do is peel some vegetables, cut some meat, and put some sauce ingredients and spices into the pot before you go to work, and by the time you come home you will have a fully cooked stew ready for you and your family.

The other great advantage of using this type of appliance is that because it is one single, glazed saucepan, it is easy to clean and it saves on mess and washing up – another plus if you are living on a tight schedule.

If you are thinking of buying one, here are some useful tips:

– Always put the vegetables on the bottom of the pot as they take longer to cook than meat.

– Always boil beans first before putting them into the pot because they contain a rare toxin that are not destroyed by a crock pot’s low temperature setting. In some rare cases, this has caused food poisoning.

– Washing up is even easier if you purchase one with a removable liner. If it does not have one, use a roasting bag to line the sides of the pot.

– For safety, use the high setting first to boil the meat through and then leave on a lower setting. This reduces any possible risks of food poisoning.

– Never overfill a crock pot, or the food will not cook properly. It should be up to two-thirds full.

– Do not lift the lid to stir. This causes air to escape and can extendcooking time significantly. Once you have filled it and switched it on, leave it to do its stuff!

Last but not least, enjoy your freedom and the delicious foods that you will make. There are many recipes that you can find for cooking from crock pot chicken to dessert recipes and even bread.

Most housewives report that once they bought one and tried, they never looked back!

Updated: November 11, 2012 — 6:22 am

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