January 5, 2009

The Crockpot

I am determined to conquer crockpot cooking!

It could be that my crockpot is about a million years old (OK, now I sound like my kids...but it is very old) or I am just not good at slow cooking but every time I try to use it, we "strongly dislike" what I cooked. I seem to only have luck with throwing in boneless ribs and bbq sauce (that always turns out good) everything else I have tried turns out horrible. I have tried roasts and they are always dry. Never could understand how meat sitting half in liquid could be completley dry, but somehow I manage.

It could have something to do with the age of the crockpot. It doesn't even have a knob anymore, (I turn it on with a pair of pliers), it barely fits 4 frozen chicken breasts (we are a family of 6) and it is really brown and ugly! It could just be the lack of good recipes that is keeping me from crockpot success. That is doubful since I do own a cookbook or two. I think maybe I just have not found the right combination of recipe and timing. I just discovered a blog where someone posted a year of crockpot recipes. I am thinking that would be a good place to start.

I really can't justify buying a new crockpot if I don't even know how to use my old one. I really need to get a good one some day, but for now I think I will just try to find a recipe or two that my family will eat. I hear they make them bigger and better now. This one is called a "Smart-Pot." Do you think it would help??


Paula Bauer said...

?? I love my slow cooker.
True, it isn't a one piece crock pot, but a West Bend three piece unit...base, pot and lid.

Roast are awesome...especially when you tuck quartered potatoes, carrots, onions and mushrooms all around. Leftover turkey chunks simmered in barbecue sauce makes a great sandwich (like sloppy joes, but with turkey),and beef burgundy - yum!

We use it to keep chili warm, or have taco meat that is already prepared be warm and ready to serve when we get home. I have a great garlic chicken recipe that the family happy to share, just holler.

yeah...maybe check into a cookbook and experiment a bit. But I love it for roasts.

Happy New Year!

Monica said...

I LOVE my Smart Pot! I love the fact that I can set the timer/heat for how long it needs to go, and then it powers down to "warm" when the cooking is done. That really helps keep the food from over cooking. Have you seen the "Fix it and forget it" cookbooks? They are recipes specifically for crockpots. Maybe you could find them at your local library?

Theresa said...

I have the Smart Pot, too, and love it! I "had" to buy it when I had started a recipe for soup and discovered that my small pot wouldn't fit all the ingredients!

Knittin'Peace said...

Have you tried putting a whole chicken in there (breast side down) for about 6 hours?

They never turn out wrong here.

But, you've gotten me lusting after the Smart Pot!!

Tara B. said...

I personally love the older pots. I intentionally go to garage sales looking for older models from the 70's to early 80's as they just seem to cook better and last longer.

I bought a newer more expensive model at Costco a couple of years back and it just quit working for no reason less than a year after purchase.

I have borrowed newer models from friends and they just don't seem to get hot enough(I often have to use the high setting, as I don't remember to start cooking till late in the day)

I highly recommend "The Fix it and Forget it" cookbook. Great recipes!

Our crockpot is a life saver on school days!