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Hi, I am considering purchasing a slow cooker or pressure cooker but would like some info first. What can you cook in them?What are the advantages over conventional cooking?Which one is better?And Do I really need one at all?
Hi, Tom. I have both. I find the slow cooker needs some thought and forward-planning. I usually prepare the meat and veg the night before and then put everything in the slow cooker in the morning. It is lovely to come home from work to a perfectly cooked meal. Flavours can dissipate, though, so seasoning almost always needs to be adjusted before serving. The main advantage, from my point of view, is that it doesn’t matter if I am home late - the meal will continue cooking at low heat without suffering too much. They are cheap to run, and incredibly easy to operate. In addition, cheaper cuts of meat are normally melt-in-the-mouth after slow cooking. If you do not want to make your own sauces or are short of time, you can add tinned soup or cook-in sauce to the meat/veg and have a good meal. When I cook a Sunday roast, I often use the slow cooker to keep the meat warm in gravy while I cook other things in the gas oven. Slow cookers are also perfect for mulled wine!My (Kuhn Rikon) pressure cooker is an absolute must-have and, if it needed replacing, I would buy another without hesitation. I use it to make soups, ragu, chilli con carne and cook pulses in a fraction of the normal cooking time. The advantage the pressure cooker has over the slow cooker is that you don’t need to forward plan. You can cook a meal from scratch in a very short period of time. I sometimes use my pressure cooker to semi-cook a whole chicken and finish it off in the oven - the result is very succulent and moist. A pressure cooker saves time and energy, and produces very little steam. It is a good sized saucepan for ordinary cooking, too. Modern ones, such as the model I own, are quiet and efficient - not like the whistling and terrifying things I remember from the past.If I could have only one, I would keep the pressure cooker because it’s so versatile. I cooked a 15-minute lamb curry a couple of weekends ago for friends - the recipe required no browning or pre-frying, and was a hit.Treat yourself, Tom!
Definitely pressure cooker! It tenderises meat, doubles as a small preserving pan (mine is a 7 litre), warms the mulled wine (not at pressure, LOL), cooks brilliant soups, casseroles, joints - - - all with very little preplanning. Have had one for 30+ years and would not be without.
personally i would go for pressure cooker. even though mine scares the wits out of me. a slow cooker is a good investment if you are out to work all day, but if you are a home bod like me, i think its a waste of counter space. but if you know how to use a pressure cooker and got the full instructions and the experts on hand, ie here, then you will be fine. I know nanny og is no longer around, but her profile might still be accessable, she had some apparently amazing recipes.
I have both and even though I'm not in full-time work I still find them both invaluable. I prefer the finished result with stews etc., as the flavours have time to devlop. The pressure cooker is invaluable for cooking pulses and lumps of gammon and anything which otherwise would need cooking for a long time but I don't think it does much for casseroles apart from speed of food on the table.You can also do pulses in the slow cooker. If I want them to stay whole I always do them this way. But if I'm going to puree them anyway I use the PC.I wouldn't use either for fish, despite the info in the specialist recipe books. They would stew it to shreds.
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