A crockpot, or slow cooker, is a valuable tool in the kitchen, particularly if you’re a part of a busy household. It cooks your food long and slow, so that you can start it before you leave for work in the morning and dinner will be ready by the end of the day. What could be better than coming home to the aroma of a delicious meal, knowing that all the work’s been done already?
Some recipes are better suited to a crockpot than others. The long simmering time means that the slow cooker is best suited to soups and stews, braised dishes, or long-simmered sauces. Braising is ideal for slow cooker dishes, as it seals in the juices of the meat. Just brown your chicken in a skillet, transfer to your slow cooker with some vegetables and liquid, and let your slow cooker go! You’ll come home to a delicious, flavourful meal. For more tips on braising, check out our video here: http://chicken.ca/cooking-tips/videos/how_to_braise_a_chicken/
Braised chicken works for any chicken stew or curry. All you need to do is switch up your braising liquid, vegetables, and any seasonings, and you can create an endless number of dishes.
If you’ve just made a roast chicken, an easy way to make your own chicken stock is using a slow cooker. Throw in the carcass, some carrot, celery, onion, and herbs, and cover with water. Leave it on overnight and you’ll have a delicious chicken stock you can use at once or freeze for future use. For more tips on slow cooker chicken stock, check out our video here: http://chicken.ca/cooking-tips/videos/slow_comfort/
With that stock, you can easily create a soup. In a clean crockpot, add some onion, carrot, celery and a vegetable of your choice (an in-season vegetable will make a beautiful soup!) Add some shredded chicken and your homemade chicken stock, along with any additional flavourings you like. In a few hours, you’ll have a savoury soup made completely from scratch.
These are just a few of the myriad ways to use your slow cooker. Check out our Slow Cooker Recipe section to see even more possibilities. Listed here are just a few: