Cast your mind back to the nineteen seventies. Do you remember the slow cooker? Did you have one? Did your parents have one? What has been a much forgotten and unfashionable kitchen item for many years is making a comeback and many believe that hard economic times are the key.
But why is slow cooking making a comeback in the kitchen? Slow cooking is a great way to make the most of what food is in the house. One pot meals have become more and more popular once again as people look to combine the need to reduce the amount of ingredients they waste with the need to reduce the time it takes to prepare meals when there’s a busy schedule to be managed. Slow cooking fits the bill on both counts. They’re great for stews, casseroles and soups and take no supervision, so you can generally be sure your meal won’t burn.
Slow cooking allows the household cook to be that little more creative in using up ingredients and looking to cheaper cuts of meat when financial times are hard. Stewing meat with vegetables allows tougher cuts of meat to cook slowly giving a more tender result. The ingredients for meals can be prepared when you have time and the slow cooker switched on when you leave for work in the morning, leaving you time to worry about the work you have to do and the other chores that need to be addressed, secure in the knowledge that dinner will be ready and waiting for you when you arrive home.
The ability to make the most of produce is a significant factor in slow cooking’s popularity. The need to waste as little produce as possible has never been greater and rather than throw out the vegetables that may not be pristine and good for stir frying or dinner party presentation, good use can be made of them in a stew or soup courtesy of the slow cooker.
A quick search across the web will let you see the myriad of ways that slow cooking can help you save time and money at home, but by far the best way to rediscover the joy of slow cooking is to experiment using your favourite ingredients or recipes handed down from years gone by. Most large supermarkets or electrical retailers have slow cookers on the shelves and the prices are low. Whether you’re cooking for two people or ten, there’s a slow cooker that will suit you and it doesn’t cost the earth.