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Thread: Crock pot wisdom

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    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Crock pot wisdom

    I was looking up a recipe for the crock pot, to use this week as a break from nachos.

    When I found this blog by a woman who crocked pot every day for 100 days!

    https://www.laurengreutman.com/15-th...days-straight/

    She had these bits of wisdom, like the order in which you put things in and how to cook chicken and beef differently.

    Do you have any crock pot words of wisdom?
    “I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

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    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    I'm afraid my bit of wisdom is to use it only for those few things (generally single-ingredient dishes) that it does well.

    I love the convenience of a crock pot/slow cooker. But, over the years, I've tired of meals that aren't cooked that well because some ingredients need more time than others (so some naturally get overcooked) and of meals that basically start tasting the same to me.

    Put a chicken into a slow cooker, switch it on, and walk away? Winner! Make beans in one (from scratch)? Love them that way. Tex-Mex Beef Casserole or Pork Chops with Cabbage? No thanks. The texture suffers too much for me to enjoy eating those kinds of dishes.
    If Americans expended even a fraction of the energy on civic engagement that we spend on consumer ideology, our democracy would be much healthier. Can you imagine people camping out to vote? -- Charles Roberts, Amherst, Mass., Nov. 25, 2006

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveinMN View Post
    I'm afraid my bit of wisdom is to use it only for those few things (generally single-ingredient dishes) that it does well.

    I love the convenience of a crock pot/slow cooker. But, over the years, I've tired of meals that aren't cooked that well because some ingredients need more time than others (so some naturally get overcooked) and of meals that basically start tasting the same to me.

    Put a chicken into a slow cooker, switch it on, and walk away? Winner! Make beans in one (from scratch)? Love them that way. Tex-Mex Beef Casserole or Pork Chops with Cabbage? No thanks. The texture suffers too much for me to enjoy eating those kinds of dishes.
    this, so much this!

    the crock is very limited. What it does well it does well, but those things are few.

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    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iris lilies View Post
    What it does well it does well, but those things are few.
    Tell me more.
    “I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

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    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    I totally understand the "limits of the crock pot" critique. I understand and dig it.

    But do you think that a crock pot could produce...let's say ... ten different damn good meals?
    “I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

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    Meat and potatoes works. So does my homemade spaghetti sauce.

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ultralight View Post
    I totally understand the "limits of the crock pot" critique. I understand and dig it.

    But do you think that a crock pot could produce...let's say ... ten different damn good meals?
    Depends on how you define “different.” Mine is excellent for:

    bean soups and beans in general

    split pea soup (different from above? You decide)

    pulled pork—you then slap it on a bun

    hunks of beef or chicken or ribs




    That’s about it from me. You can put noodles or rice in with the hunks of meat but I never succeed in getting them cooked correctly, the noodles and rice are qlways mushy, and same with vegetables. Now, with soups, I dont mind mushy begetables necessarily, but they are not ideal.

    The crock is lovely for making carmelized onions, but that isnt a meal.

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    Senior Member Ultralight's Avatar
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    Seems like everyone is saying the crock pot is good for meat, poultry, and beans. But for veggies it is a no-go.

    In my limited experience, I kind of agree.
    “I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand." -- Rodney Dangerfield

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    Senior Member herbgeek's Avatar
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    But for veggies it is a no-go.
    But why would you want to cook veggies for hours in the first place? They only take a couple of minutes to stir fry, saute, grill or boil. A few more minutes to roast. The big time suck of vegetables is cutting them up, the cooking is the easy part.

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    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by herbgeek View Post
    But why would you want to cook veggies for hours in the first place?
    Some vegetables benefit from more than a few minutes of cooking -- the aforementioned onions, tomatoes (for sauce or, extending a bit, stewed), the classic "greens" (collards, turnip, etc.), and potatoes (a slow cooker essentially is a portable 250-degree oven). But, again, the use cases are few.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultralight
    But do you think that a crock pot could produce...let's say ... ten different damn good meals?
    By itself, I would say it could not. Ten meals? For sure. Damn good ones? Unlikely, IMO, unless you were willing to use the end product as part of the entire meal. I would add to IL's list:

    - baking a chicken or turkey parts in the slow cooker (the skin does not come out crispy but the white meat doesn't come out dry, either);
    - chili (largely a open-the-cans [or the -freezer] dump-and-go);
    - carnitas (should be finished in the broiler/oven to dry out and become a bit crispy)
    - other cuts of meat which call for long, slow, moist cooking (ribs, beef cheeks, venison, maybe goat; doesn’t preclude finishing them under a broiler, too)
    If Americans expended even a fraction of the energy on civic engagement that we spend on consumer ideology, our democracy would be much healthier. Can you imagine people camping out to vote? -- Charles Roberts, Amherst, Mass., Nov. 25, 2006

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