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Slow Cookers Recipes - Slow Cooker Basics Part 2
First, there are slow cookers recipes cookbooks on the market. They turn some of our favorite stovetop and oven recipes into slow cooker sensations. Dishes you may never thought of cooking in a crock pot cooker can be prepared without you even being there. I don’t know about you, but that idea sounds fantastic to me.
What you must remember when cooking anything in a slow cooker is the liquid component. There must be some type of liquid in the bottom of the cooker to begin the cooking process. Without it, your dish will cook to the bottom and burn. There doesn’t need to be a lot of it, just enough to cover the bottom in most cases. The juices within the meat will mingle with the other liquid during cooking to create more of a stock.
When using a crock pot it should be at least half full for maximum cooking potential. Keep in mind that the more food you add to the cooker, the slower it will cook. The temperature will cook the food evenly without overcooking if the heat settings are adjusted accordingly. If you aren’t careful and don’t adjust the crock pot heat settings, you may find that an eight hour setting cooked your dinner in two and spent the other six drying it out.
Meats are the most common food cooked in a slow cooker. People use a crock pot to cook main dishes for dinner since this is the meal we struggle with preparing most on a busy schedule. Any meat used needs to be thoroughly drained before adding it to the cooker. Since meat takes longer to cook, they need to make up the bottom layer. This will also help keep the meat moist since it will cook into the liquid underneath.
For safety, cook meats at least three hours so that an internal temperature that is high enough for proper cooking can be reached. This is not usually a problem since many use the crock pot at its lowest setting (six to ten hours depending on the brand of cooker). Just a word of advice, whole chickens should not be used in a slow cooker. The internal temperature needed to safely cook that much chicken properly can’t be reached in time for eating at such low temperature settings.
If you plan to cook vegetables in your slow cooker, here are some tips. Tough fibrous veggies like carrots and potatoes can be tossed in at the beginning with the meat. It takes longer for the fibers to be broken down and the vegetables to be cooked all the way through. More delicate vegetables like tomatoes, peppers, and mushrooms should be added half an hour before the meal is done.
Slow cooking makes dinner a cinch when you are on the run. Just be sure to experiment with various dishes the first time to get an idea of how long your slow cooker takes to create the particular meal. Layering foods correctly and testing heat settings will ensure your meal will be delicious every time.
Learn how to make great slow cookers recipes. A slow cooker is a useful tool for any busy household. All that is required of you is to add your ingredients to the crock pot and be ready to eat a sumptuous meal when you return. Slow cookers come in many sizes to accommodate singles and larger family units. Before you begin to lick your lips, here are some basic tips about how and what to cook in your slow cooker.