I’ve been laughed at by my family over this but I wanted to share my excitement with you about my new favourite gizmo. I bought a slow cooker! Do you have one?
I’m not into kitchen gadgets, I don’t have the time, patience (or the work surface space!) to include any more stuff into our house. BUT this thing is awesome.
I made two dishes yesterday – one was a soup with all the random veg left in the fridge, a load of lentils and herbs/spices for flavour. It was lovely! I chucked it all in the cooker, turned the dial to low, 4 hours and that was it. Once it had finished cooking, I just blended it up and served it up to Emmeline for a late lunch. Delish.
I’ve found a few recipes that I want to try but I thought I’d share with you the one I’ve already attempted. It’s really easy and the amounts and ingredients are not exact.
Before that, here are a few things I’ve learnt through my research…
Tips for successful slow cooker meals
- Only use ingredients that are happy to be cooked for a prolonged time. So pasta isn’t ideal as it will turn to mush unless added near the end of a recipe (defeating the purpose of what I want a slow cooker for) or you keep cooking times down. Similarly, summer type vegetables are not ideal as they are too soft and will turn to babyfood if cooked for too long. Slow cooking is mostly suited to hard root vegetables and other sturdy ingredients. If you’re cooking soup then naturally, none of the above really matters once it’s all blended.
- Something I never realised as being beneficial is to pre-heat your slow cooker. Ideally leave it for 15-20 minutes before adding your ingredients. It isn’t essential but if you are required to sautée onions (for example) before adding to the slow cooker then it makes no sense to move them from a hot pan to a cold cooking pot.
- Go easy on the liquid! Water does not evaporate within a slow cooker and neither does it soak up as readily as when cooking in the oven or stove. If a typical recipe requires a certain amount of water then reduce it by about 1/3. Or if it’s too late then cipher some out into an additional pot and save in case you need to re-add it at a later point.
- Don’t cook raw or dried beans in a slow cooker. These still need to be boiled off to remove the toxins so either do this beforehand or cheat like I do and just buy canned versions. #alwaystakethelazyoption
- Finally. Leave it alone! Every time you take that lid off all the moisture and heat escapes and cooking time will need increasing slightly.
As is typical for me – this recipe can be varied in terms of spiciness, vegetables or beans included. Quantities can be played with too.
Coconut and quinoa curry
1 sweet potato – peeled and chopped quite large
2 cups of broccoli (I used one whole broccoli head, it doesn’t have to be exact)
1/2 diced onion
1 can of chopped tomatoes
1 can of chickpeas
2 cans of coconut milk
1/2 cup of quinoa
2 grated garlic cloves
1Tablespoon grated ginger
1 teaspoon miso
1 Tablespoon grated turmeric
1 teaspoon of chilli flakes
2 Tablespoons soya sauce
- Literally bung everything in the slow cooker, add a cup of water (you can add more later on if you think it’s too thick) and stir. It doesn’t look particularly great to begin with…
- Cook for 3-4 hours and your house will smell divine.
In future I’m going to add more ginger/garlic/chilli as it was a little too mild for me. We ate it with rice, onion bhaji’s, soya yoghurt and mango chutney <3 Delicious.
I’d love to hear of any fab slow cooker recipes you’ve found.