Thursday, May 27, 2010

Slow learner

Had another go at slowcooking. Bought big piece of corned beef from butcher who actually makes it by soaking in Brine - Old School style.
Read facebook posts and determined to cook mine in gingerale, with juice and zest of 1/2 an orange, a bay leaf , and large pieces of kumara, swede and carrot around outside.
5 hours on high - beef is cooked. Tastes just the same as if I'd boiled it. Veges are soggy and v. Salty. Served with brocoli and saute potatoes.
Will not bother doing again unless have to go out in early evening and cant cook in usual manner as was no noticable advantage to doing it slow.
Personally couldn't use slow cooker for dinner everyday as am crying out for some scrunch and crunch on my plate after only 2 days. Is like eating toddler food -would have been good when tooth was sore though.

Will continue to experiment but am just not liking the textures and missing smell of sauteed onion and garlic and sizzling meat, crispy edges, and crunchy toppings.


  1. I totally agree with you on slow cookers. I cooked lamb shanks and while they lovely and tender (fell apart) they were bland and boring and the veges were not much better. The thing that concerns me is the amount of water and preservatives that comes out of the meat these days as it's being cooked. It is a horrible white scum and your veges absorb the flavour..yukkkk!

  2. I'm glad your sharing your opinion on slow cooking as I too have always wondered what all the hype is about.. I can find no reason for cooking corned beef in the slow cooker either... mine has always turned out beautifully when done in a standard pot. Good luck with finding some good recipes, I'm certainly hunting! hehe

  3. have only ever cooked corned beef in slow cooker so can't compare, however it's always super yum. Top tips are not too much liquid and don't bother doing veg in there except as seasoning for corned beed. I only use an onion.
    Had your yummy butter chicken & veg recipe for tea tonight and wondered about doing that in the slow cooker. Will let you know next time.

  4. I love my slow cooker - I almost always cook my veggies separate (other than onions and potatoes - those go in) so that I get some crunch. i'll also fry up some garnish (like grated ginger) to add that crunch crunch.

    Here's my favorite crock pot recipe - it'll makes TONS of food and produces lots of juice so be sure your slow cooker is big enough.

    Pork Picnic shoulder
    1 can tomato paste
    1 can (use tomato paste can)soy sauce
    1 can brown sugar
    Hawiian sweet rolls

    Mix paste, soy sauce, and brown sugar into paste. Place pork into crock pot and coat in paste. Cook on high 5-6 hours and then low until ready to eat. serve with sweet rolls. Reheats well - meat will fall apart and crock pot will fill with natural juices.

    Enjoy! :)

  5. Alison Holst's Paprika Rub whole chicken is the best slow cooker recipe ever. Use mine all the time in winter, especially for soup - leave it on warm and children just eat when they want.

  6. Crockpots aren't for everything, I use mine mainly for stews and stock.

    Here's my favourite slow cooker recipie - Rogan Josh from scratch:

    500 gms lamb chunks
    2 onions, finely chopped
    3 tbsp each minced garlic and minced ginger

    1 tsp each turmeric, red chilli powder
    2 tsp each salt, ground cumin, ground coriander
    3 tsp garam masala

    1 tin diced tomato
    1 small pottle natural yogurt

    Sweat onions, add ginger and garlic, then spices. Fry until crumb-like, then add lamb and brown thoroughly.

    Put beef, tomato, and yogurt into crockpot and cook on low for 4-6 hours until lamb is tender and spices have mellowed.

    Great with rice and salad.

  7. k here goes...I'm forever trying ot fing croclpot recipes to suit our busy lifestyle....tonight I tried another of -this time thought up on the I chopped and piled a bunch of leeks on the bottom with 1/2 cup of so of chicken stock...I think rubbed a whole chicken in paprika, cumin, olive oil, salt and flour...popped on top of the leeks and cooked on LOw for 7 hours...then as I had thorwn in a bunch of potatoes and kumara inthe oven to raost, i drained off the leeks (swimming in chicken jiuice) and threw them in for the last 10 mins - they sizzled up and kinda got some texture back...I also threw the chicken on the top shelf with temp up high to add a abit of texture back (less slimy)...only for around 8 mins....served it with steamed brocilli and carrot cumin slad...VERDICT, 4 kids and 1 husband = food gone! ME = happy about that! this worked well on a day when we had an hour at home before dinner after sport....and it really was a bit less than that to prep and cook veges.

  8. You definitely have to pick your meals for the slow cooker but that said there are some very good recipes out there and for those days when you know you are going to be coming in the door with a horde of hungry kids, half-an-hour past dinner time but you have some time in the morning a slowcooker can be a wonderful thing. Ditto last week when I was serving soup to the church Alpha group and needed something to keep it hot in a room with no stove.

    I adore Simon & Alison Holst's two slowcooker recipe books - I should quickly add that I say that as the proud owner and regular user of every_single_DG cookbook ;-)