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Recomend Crock Pot (slow cooker)
Old 12-15-2007, 06:27 AM   #1
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Recomend Crock Pot (slow cooker)

Hello need some input looking to buy a new crock pot (slow cooker). All th ones I see are to big 4 to 8 quart. I am cooking for one and sometimes two. Looking for 2 quart and have the programmable features or at least one that when the timer setting is met that it will go into keep warm mode.

Any suggestions or experences

Thank You
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Old 12-15-2007, 08:06 AM   #2
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Just get one that isn't too big of a PITA to wash.
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Old 12-15-2007, 08:07 AM   #3
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We've got your basic, plain vanilla model, like this one:



and use it at least once a week. We've never missed the timer or other programmable features. Removable crock is nice. Plenty at garage sales for $1 each. I'd recommend just getting the standard size -- it works fine even for smaller meals.
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Old 12-15-2007, 09:35 AM   #4
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The 4 quart ones are the perfect size .You don't want it bubbling over & making a mess . This is the one I have Rival 4-qt. Oval Slow Cooker - Red : Target real easy to clean .I 've used a crock pot for many years and never needed the programable features .I usually fix the meal the night before in the removable crock pot then I put it in my fridge .In the morning I plug it in on low and come home to a meal .It's like having a wife .
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Old 12-15-2007, 10:20 AM   #5
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Here's one with all sorts of features:

Amazon.com: Cuisinart PSC-400 4 Quart Programmable Slow Cooker, Brushed Stainless Steel: Kitchen & Dining

But I too wonder if you'll use any beyond the basic.
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Old 12-15-2007, 10:24 AM   #6
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In my experience (of buying the wrong kind) I have found that you should get a stoneware one. Also get one that heats the whole pot rather than just the bottom.

Mike D.
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Old 12-15-2007, 11:08 AM   #7
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I've got Moemg's one. It is great. What is really nice is to cook cheaper bone-in chicken pieces all day--the meat just falls off the bone at the end of the cooking time. Yum!
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Old 12-15-2007, 11:10 AM   #8
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I've been thinking about getting a crock pot, but am stumped as to what I would cook in it. Does anyone have any recommendations for a good cookbook for crock pot recipes?
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Old 12-15-2007, 11:15 AM   #9
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It's like having a wife .
Almost.

Ha
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Recipes
Old 12-15-2007, 11:28 AM   #10
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Recipes

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Originally Posted by DangerMouse View Post
I've been thinking about getting a crock pot, but am stumped as to what I would cook in it. Does anyone have any recommendations for a good cookbook for crock pot recipes?
Start at the Rival.com website.
Cooking Light also has published several.
Check out any bookstore -- there are many to choose from.

-- Rita
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Old 12-15-2007, 11:40 AM   #11
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I've been thinking about getting a crock pot, but am stumped as to what I would cook in it. Does anyone have any recommendations for a good cookbook for crock pot recipes?
Check out Amazon.com...just punch in 'crock pot cookbook'.....there's a bunch of 'em there......and you can read the user's reviews too.

We use ours a lot. Roasts, birds, stuffed peppers, corned beef, stews, soups, venison, hams, ham & beans, casseroles, etc. The options are nearly unlimited.
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Old 12-15-2007, 11:44 AM   #12
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Quote:
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I've been thinking about getting a crock pot, but am stumped as to what I would cook in it. Does anyone have any recommendations for a good cookbook for crock pot recipes?
They are great for pot roasts ,pork roasts ,sausage & peppers ,Chicken and I have developed a beef stew recipe for idiots .

1 lb stew meat dipped in flour & browned ,1 cup beef broth and 1 bag frozen stew veggies .Put in meat ,broth and frozen stew veggies ( they need to go on top ) turn crock pot to low and voila instant dinner .
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Old 12-15-2007, 11:58 AM   #13
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Make sure if you get a small one, that its got a stoneware crock thats also removable, and read reviews to make sure they dont run too hot. Some of the small ones are a lot hotter than the larger ones. Having to keep an eye on your slow cooker to make sure it doesnt burn your food and then having to scrape out an integral crock in the sink with an electric cord and heating element hanging off of it isnt a good time.
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Old 12-15-2007, 12:28 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by boots View Post
Hello need some input looking to buy a new crock pot (slow cooker). All th ones I see are to big 4 to 8 quart. I am cooking for one and sometimes two. Looking for 2 quart and have the programmable features or at least one that when the timer setting is met that it will go into keep warm mode.

Any suggestions or experences

Thank You
Like the others said, get one with the removable stoneware pot and the heating element that is on the bottom and the sides. I wouldn't bother with the timer and all the fancy add ons; if you cook something on low all day, it won't matter if you cook it an hour or two longer. As far as size, you can cook smaller amounts in the regular size one -- but if you cook more, most crock pot recipes are even more delicious the next day (or you can freeze portions for the future.)

What to cook? Pretty much anything that benefits from a slow, moist method of cooking. Ribs, chili, soups, roasts, chickens, spaghetti sauce, stuffed peppers, sausage & sauerkraut, whatever you're hungry for basically!

Hmmm, I'm thinking this would be a great day for chicken soup. Here's my quickie recipe:

Cut up a pound or so of skinless chicken -- I usually use the frozen chicken breasts from Costco. Put in crock pot with 1 qt of chicken broth (or 1 qt. water with 4 or 5 chicken boullion cubes); add 1 chopped onion, 3 or 4 celery ribs with the leaves, chopped; 4 or 5 chopped carrots; add 1 tablespoon of Mrs. Dash seasoning (and a bay leaf if you want to be fancy). Add in 1/2 bag of extra wide egg noodles -- or whatever other noodles you prefer. Add additional water to cover all ingredients - don't stir until ready to eat. Cover. Cook on low for 8-10 hours, or on high for 4-6 hours or until chicken & vegs are tender. Mmmm, tasty!
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Old 12-15-2007, 12:28 PM   #15
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The model similar to mine, the Rival SCR500 is $24.99 with free shipping at amazon. You'll have to throw something else in to get it over $25.00 to get the free shipping though...

Its about the right size...you toss in a 2-3lb roast, a couple of potatoes and carrots and an onion and its pretty full.

Best part is loading the thing up with a stew or pot roast or split pea soup and letting it go for 5-8 hours. Just remember to brown your meat well before throwing it in the slow cooker to increase the flavor.

Interesting piece of food science. Tough cuts taste beefier and better than tender cuts and are cheaper too. Tender cuts are expensive because they're convenient...you can cook them lightly and in any number of ways and still have a tender steak or roast. Within meat is an enzyme that activates when you start heating the meat and is effective in breaking down fibers until the meat reaches 122 degrees, at which point the enzyme stops working. Long wet cooking also breaks down collagens and connective tissues in the meat, adding flavor and body to the liquid and tenderness to the meat.

I was just reading about a technique that involves dry cooking a roast for 24 hours @121 degrees to maximize the enzyme efficiency...allegedly producing an eye round roast with tenderloin tenderness but much more flavor. Since most home ovens wont go that low, a modified approach using a setting in the 180-200 range for 8-10 hours, shutting off the oven when the roast reaches 110-115 degrees produces a similar result.

Another interesting approach that I've done in the oven but want to modify for the crock pot is a dry 'roast' chicken. Brown the chicken on all sides in a skillet, then putting it into the crock pot for about 7 hours on low...no liquids or other ingredients. Not for the crispy skin folks, but it produces an intensely flavored, very moist bird.
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Old 12-15-2007, 01:11 PM   #16
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Quote:
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Hello need some input looking to buy a new crock pot (slow cooker). All th ones I see are to big 4 to 8 quart. I am cooking for one and sometimes two.

There are lots of smaller ones out there. We've used one of the Rival brand for years. When we worked, we would start it on "low" in the morning and let cook while we were at work. Come home and voila, dinner was ready.

Lots of good suggestions posted by the others here.
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Old 12-15-2007, 03:08 PM   #17
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CFB's detailed knowledge of kitchenware, appliances and other household items used to befuddle me - then i read the insomnia thread... and understood!

Don't you ever just buy something cuz it looks good cfb?
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Old 12-15-2007, 04:30 PM   #18
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I've been thinking about getting a crock pot, but am stumped as to what I would cook in it. Does anyone have any recommendations for a good cookbook for crock pot recipes?
There are so many great things you can make in a crockpot. My suggestion is to put in "crockpot + recipes" in google. You'll find a plethora of yummy recipes!

It just so happens I am making stuffed peppers in the crockpot right now
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5,940 Crock Pot Recipes.....
Old 12-15-2007, 04:41 PM   #19
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5,940 Crock Pot Recipes.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by DangerMouse View Post
I've been thinking about getting a crock pot, but am stumped as to what I would cook in it. Does anyone have any recommendations for a good cookbook for crock pot recipes?
We always find a lot of good recipes at Recipezaar. I punched 'crock pot' into their search bar and it shows "5,940 Crock Pot Recipes".

Crock Pot Recipes at Recipezaar

Enjoy!

(BTW...we have a Rival 4 quart. We like it quite well!)
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Old 12-15-2007, 05:55 PM   #20
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Crockpots were a life saver for me when I worked. I own two different sizes and shapes to use depending on what I was cooking. I would do the prep before I went to bed and then put everything in the pot in the morning before I went to work. It was great coming home to a hot meal that involved little cleanup. I will second the removable stoneware . To make it even easier you can get the liners (cooking bags) so cleanup is a breeze. These pots are real money savers, you can use a cheaper cut of meat ans still get a good meal and it save you from eating out of buying take out. It also kept me from running a hot stove in the summer thus keeping the house cooler. Lower AC bills. There are thousands of recipes on the net. I do a lot of middle eastern cooking and the recipes come out great. I am looking to buy a Rival BB200 Crockpit BBQ Pit so that I can do ribs at home year round. Buying ribs out is expensive and I miss them in the winter when it is too cold to grill outdoors .
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