Crock Pots

The Crock Pot

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How To Convert ‘Normal’ Recipes To Crock Pot Recipes.

From normal to crock pot recipe is not nearly as much bother, as most people seem to think.

Step 1 is not to panic. A lot of people get worried about the whole thing.

You really can't go wrong. In all the years we have been cooking with the Crock Pot we have only had two stuff ups and they had nothing to do with the recipe.

Basically, just chuck everything in the pot. No need to fry or brown first – unless you really need to have the meat brown. (we never bother).

But, How much do I reduce the liquid by?(Relax it's easy)

It all depends on the recipe. Don’t you hate answers like that. Generally, you will need to half the amount of liquid you add.

It does not really matter. If when it is within an hour of being done and there is too much liquid, just remove the lid and let is boil off.

The other solution is to mix a tablespoon of cornflour (or plain flour) in a cup with just enough water to make it into a paste. Stir this into the Crock Pot and allow to boil.

Easy Really. And not such a drama as some ‘experts’ try to make out.


Basic Hints

  • Cook with the lid on.

  • Most meat and vegetable combinations will require about 8 hours on low to cook and 4 on high.

  • The flavour of fresh herbs may be intensified in the Crock Pot. So reduce the amount. Towards the end of cooking – taste, if it needs more just add it in.

  • Dried herbs and spices are generally best added in the last hour.

  • Be careful when cooking with milk, cream and sour cream. Due to the slow cooking process, they tend to curdle. The solution is to just add them at the end of cooking.

My biggest tip is to relax and enjoy your Crock Pot cooking. Experiment and try new ideas. The Crock Pot is great – you can’t really stuff it up.

How To Transfer Old Recipes

I just got a new crock pot and wanted to know how to transfer some of my old recipes to a crock pot recipe.

I read a recipe for turkey thighs in the paper, and it calls for braising, sauteing onions and garlic, etc.

I am not sure if I'm supposed to do all that before I put it all in the crock pot and then on high or low or for how long. Is there any standard adapting? Thanks. Valerie

Thanks for the email. What a great question about converting recipes for the crock pot.

Firstly congratulations on getting your first crock pot - I hope you find many recipes that you and your family enjoy.

Converting oven recipes to crock pot recipes is not very hard though I would suggest you start with a few recipes that are already designed for the crock pot before you start - just so you can get a feel for your crock pot.

Whether you braise the meat first or not is entirely up to you. Some people always braise first whilst others never do - personally I generally don't just because I'm in too much of a hurry. It will give the meat a different flavor - and if you do decide to braise don't over cook as you don't want the meat dry on the outside.

Sauteing onions etc - It's often best to saute the onions if you can as I find they don't cook well in the slow cooker. However, I have developed a way of sauteing them in the slow cooker. Add a knob of butter to the crock pot and turn to high - Dice your onion finely - put in the crock pot and cook for half and hour, with a stir halfway through. Then add the rest of your ingredients and set temperature as required. This will result in onion that is cooked at the end of the cooking time. And if the recipe calls for garlic you can do it at the same time - otherwise I often just pop the garlic in.

The biggest thing when changing recipes for the slow cooker is liquid. Because the slow cooker is a closed unit you will not need as much liquid. Now this is an experience thing - but often the rule of thumb is half of that suggested in the oven recipe.

If there is too much liquid - then half an hour before serving add a paste of corn starch (corn flour) and water to thicken the gravy.

Cooking times - most stews, casseroles etc will cook in the crock pot for 4 to 5 hours on high or 8 to 9 hours on low.

Hope this helps.

Happy Cooking
Lisa "The Crock Cook"

Still not sure – huh!. Well try these recipes. Neil and I have cooked all of these, eaten the results and lived to tell the tale (ha ha) – seriously we recommend all these recipes. Crock Pot Recipe Index.


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