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Slow Cooker for Fast Food? The Must-Have Kitchen Appliance That Promises a Meal on Arrival!

January 25, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 173

There is something so comforting when entering a home filled with the smells of dinner cooking. It reminds us of childhood when coming home from school to Mom's kitchen. And after a day of working, errands, appointments, workouts and car pools, isn't it so nice to return to a home full of these memorable, flavorful scents and a hot home-cooked meal already made for you and your family in a slow cooker? Now, that is truly fast food.

It is almost as if you hadn't done the work yourself! It's like you had a hired cook working all day for you. All you did to deserve this fast meal was set it into action in the morning when you combined meat or chicken with some vegetables in a slow cooker. Those satisfying, natural ingredients cooked slowly all day until the meat became melt-in-your-mouth tender. You can grab yourself an immediate bite or keep it all warm until everyone has gathered and you're ready to sit down to dinner, a stress-less family dinner at home.

Another great benefit of the slow cooker is that it provides for a healthier, less-expensive meal than you would have if you had stopped at the grocery deli department or your favorite fast-food restaurant for take-out. It saves money, too, by transforming that cheaper, tougher cut of meat that you bought to fit your recession budget. The slow cooker has the ability to turn it into savoire faire! That is a fancy way to say "know how," and this "know how" is about going from tough to tender!

There are a few less pots and pans to clean up too. (This is one of my favorite benefits!) As well, leftovers stay perfect for next day's lunch or another meal later in the week. These are benefits that are not lost on the chief-cook-and-bottle-washer who also runs the house, and who is likely squeezing in another load of laundry and helping with homework, all before bed.

Good Housekeeping recently tested, and has given its famous Stamp of Approval to, a product among one of my favorite brands of slow cookers. It's Crock Pot brand Smart-Set Slow Cooker SCVC600-S, a $100 item. By the way, "Crock Pot" is a brand name. Since the Rival Company developed the product in the early 1970s, it has become synonymous with the generic term slow cooker. Now made by Sunbeam, Crock Pot is a reliable brand and it makes a terrific line of these products, large and small.

The magazine Good Housekeeping and its research Institute are so thorough in their examinations, not only did they test recipes using the Smart-Set Crock pot, but they judged the temperatures reached and maintained within two hours' settings and confirmed that surfaces didn't burn to the touch. They also checked all the gauges, controls, switchers and timers for their dependability, and even checked its clean-ability.

The Smart-Set is a six-quart model, which is the most popular size of slow cooker. It includes a temperature probe to automatically cook meat until it reaches the right internal temperature and then it switches to a simmer setting. This means foolproof cooking. You don't need a recipe to know when to preset the temperature switch to simmer. This is important when you want, for instance, to make a delicious braised pork tenderloin without a recipe and would not know how long to keep pork in the cook mode without this practical tool.

Take my suggestion to buy yourself a slow cooker, or use Good Housekeeping's proven advice and buy yourself that Crock Pot Smart-Set. With this model or any other slow cooker, know that you were the smart one committed to eating healthfully and providing yourself the best fast food on your return home. Pamper yourself with that slow cooker working hard all day in your kitchen while you work or play.

Bon Appetit!

(c) 2012 Elizabeth J McMillian

Elizabeth J McMillian is a writer, an amateur chef and a multi-tasker who finds her Crock Pot a savior in her busy life. http://SlowCookers-CrockPots.com is her informational website where she provides busy professionals and families with short cuts to healthy eating and uncovers tips about these useful appliances. She guides you to discounts for many of the top brand slow cookers sold online, as well. To take advantage of some of the smart buys suggested, make sure you check out McMillian's site at the above link to learn more.

Source: EzineArticles
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