Slow cookers from Kenwood appeared on sale with programs: stewing, simmering, jam:
Can anyone share information about them?
Slow cooker: we cook like in a Russian oven28.12
Why do you think food was so much tastier before? My opinion is: quality products and proper preparation. After all, in fact, what has changed since then? The rhythm of life has become much faster, especially in metropolitan areas, and people simply do not have time to cook properly. After all, a dish that takes 40 minutes to cook is unlikely to be as nutritious and tasty as one that takes several hours to cook. And if you don't have that much time, what to do then? The answer suggests itself: you need to somehow automate the cooking process, since modern technologies allow you to make almost any electronic device. Here are the engineers and invented slow cooker... By the way, she also has other names: crock pot (clay pot) and slow cooker (slow pan).
Let's figure out what kind of device it is. The slow cooker consists of a body, inside of which one or more heating elements are located around the perimeter, an insert pan and a sealed lid. If food is cooked in a regular saucepan and fried in a frying pan, then a slightly different process takes place in a slow cooker - languor. The cooking temperature in it ranges from 60 to 150 degrees Celsius (depending on the model and operating modes). Thanks to this temperature range and a sealed lid, the water practically does not evaporate, and the products are slowly stewed in their own juice, preserving almost all vitamins and useful microelements. If you are worried that bacteria will remain in the food, then I hasten to reassure you - they will not. After all, already at a temperature of 70 degrees Celsius, most bacteria die, and in a slow cooker this temperature will be maintained for hours.
By the way, since we mentioned time, let's talk about it in more detail. If you have ever made jam, then you know that you need to cook it over low heat for a long time, stirring constantly, otherwise it will burn. With the advent of slow cookers, these problems are a thing of the past. After all, they allow you to cook food for a long time (up to 12 hours) at low temperatures, which means that the problem with burning is no longer terrible. And what appetizing meat is obtained in a slow cooker - you just lick your fingers. Even the lowest quality meat, which requires a long heat treatment, turns out to be soft and tender.
Slow cooker KENWOOD CP 658 with mechanical control
Slow cookers have a number of convenient functions in addition to conventional cooking.
The first is the keeping warm mode. It can come in handy when you have prepared food, but for some reason it is too early to serve it. By activating this mode, you will keep the food warm before serving.
The second function is delayed start. A great feature for those who value their time. Knowing the cooking time of the product, you can place it in the slow cooker in advance, select the desired time interval before cooking, turn on the device and safely leave for work or business. After the timer counts down the time you set, the slow cooker will automatically start cooking. Agree, it is very convenient when you come home from work, and a fragrant dinner is already waiting for you.
There are certain rules for preparing food in a slow cooker, which we will now consider.
- The very first and foremost rule: the insert pot must be perfectly clean before you start cooking.
- Slow cooker water practically does not evaporate, so add half as much water as you are used to.
- If you are using a recipe that is intended for cooking in the oven or on the stove, then calculate the time based on a ratio of 1: 4. That is, if a dish is cooked in the oven for 1.5 hours, then in a slow cooker the cooking process will take 6 hours.
- The insert pot must be at least 1/2 full, maximum 2/3 full. If the food is less than half the size of the pan, then it will cook faster than required. If more than 2/3 of the volume is filled, then uneven heating of the dish will occur due to the lack of sufficient space for steam.
- Avoid looking under the lid of your slow cooker often, and ideally the lid should seal the insert pot throughout the entire cooking process. Each lifting of the lid lengthens the process by about 20 minutes.
- Vegetables are cooked the longest in the slow cooker, meat and poultry a little faster. Least time is required to cook seafood.
Tips for choosing
So, let's determine the criteria by which to choose a slow cooker. The very first thing worth paying attention to is volume insert pans and materialfrom which it is made. In terms of volume, be guided by the number of people in the family and their appetites. But remember the rule "filling no more than 2/3 of the volume", otherwise at some point there will be a need to cook more food than usual, and there will not be enough space for it. In terms of materials, pans with ceramic walls are preferable, but made of other safe materials are also suitable.
The second important parameter is power device. You should not strive to purchase a device with a high power value, because 320 watts are enough to maintain a temperature of 70 degrees Celsius. On the other hand, a slow cooker with 2000 W power in HIGH mode will make it easy to caramelize food (onions, jam, etc.). The main thing is that the power of the heating elements is sufficient for the normal heating of the entire volume of food in the insert pan.
The third thing to pay attention to is temperature settings... Most often there are only two modes in a slow cooker - LOW and HIGH. Check with the seller or in the instructions for the device for the temperature values that each mode corresponds to. There are slow cookers with MEDIUM mode. In addition, if you plan to use the keep warm mode, then immediately clarify this point - not all devices have it.
Fourth - control type... Slow cookers are equipped with an electronic control unit for convenient control of the timer and other functions. If you don't need a timer, then you can look towards mechanically controlled devices.
Slow cooker KENWOOD CP 707 with electronic control
These are, in fact, all the main points to which you should pay attention when choosing a slow cooker. Finally, I would like to give a few recipes for dishes that take on a completely different taste in a slow cooker.
Capelin with vegetables
To prepare this dish, you will need: 2 kg of capelin or herring, 300 g of carrots, 300 g of onions, 150 g of vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons of tomato paste, seasonings for fish and bay leaf.
Cut the onions and carrots into slices and place 1/3 part on the bottom of the insert pan. Put half of the fish on top, salt it and sprinkle with seasonings. Add the bay leaf. Then we put the layer of vegetables again, the layer of fish and the remaining vegetables on top. We dilute the tomato paste with 50 grams of water and add the resulting mixture to the rest of the products.
The dish is cooked for 8 hours, but in a combined mode. Cook for the first 2 hours in LOW mode, then 4 hours in HIGH mode, the last 2 hours in LOW mode again.As a result, you will end up with a dish that tastes amazing.
Slow cooked capelin with vegetables
In the slow cooker, you can cook not only the first and second courses, but also desserts. Below is the recipe for the pudding.
We will need the following products: 1 can of condensed milk, 800 grams of milk (the fatter the better), 1 tablespoon of starch, 4 eggs and vanilla. To prepare the glaze, you need 1 glass of sugar and 1 tablespoon of water.
Mix condensed milk and eggs in a mixer, then add vanilla to the mixture. Mix a small amount of milk with starch, then add the remaining milk and the mixture of condensed milk and eggs.
The second step is to prepare caramel. Pour sugar into a frying pan, add water and heat over low heat until it is completely melted and then caramelized. Lubricate the inner walls of the mold with the resulting caramel, in which we will cook the pudding. We set the mold itself on a saucer, previously placed inside the insert pan. We add water, but so that it does not fall into the form with the pudding, and cover the form itself with a film to avoid condensation.
After finishing cooking, let the water cool down, remove the mold and place in the refrigerator for 12 hours. The dish is ready. For added flavor and aesthetics, the pudding can be drizzled over with chocolate icing.
Slow Cooker Pudding
As you can see, a slow cooker can make your kitchen work a lot easier and give you plenty of free time. It does not require special control, it allows you to maintain a constant temperature for a long time, which is extremely convenient when cooking jam, jellied meat, bean soups, baked milk and other dishes that require prolonged temperature processing.