On busy days I like to plan for simple meals that taste great without eating up all of my free time. It was for this reason I adored my slow-cooker. Given to me by my Grams, this 1970’s looking masterpiece consisted of a pot, lid and hot plate. This bad boy was amazing! Living in basement suites for the better part of a decade will give you a healthy appreciation for anything that will keep you from having to turn on your oven. If your place is still too hot, take it outside, plug it in and enjoy a heat free hot meal. I have used that slow cooker for everything from pork chops to pancakes.
Unfortunately my stove top was jealous, and lured the slow cooker into a false sense of security, melting the bottom and part of the cord. Mental Note: When counter top space is limited, be sure to double-check that you are turning on the right element…..trust me.
So while he has been retired and is now living the life of leisure down with the bread maker, I struck out to find a replacement. You see a slow cooker will be a trusted friend, professional cook, an assistant and a saving grace. You want to make sure that your choosing wisely, as the consequences can be deadly.
In Value Village I found a massive Rival slow cooker with a porcelain dish and plastic lid. I instantly wrapped my greedy little hands around it and held on for dear life. This $13.99 piece of gold can make a double batch of chili without any problem. From a comparison shopping aspect, $13.99 will get you a single serving mini slow cooker from The Real Canadian Superstore.
When shopping for big-ticket items, which to me is anything other than Tupperware, don’t be afraid of second-hand treasures. Your chances are 50/50, but you are more than likely to have saved a bunch of money and received something just as good, but sometimes better than what you will find in a Real Canadian Superstore or Wal-Mart.
With safety at the forefront check the cord for melted plastic and bare wires, then of course making sure it is big enough to feed your family. My next concern with slow cookers is teflon. I really like porcelain, does this have anything to do with the rampage my boyfriend goes on when he finds just one pan with flaking teflon? Probably, I usually end up missing some of my favourite pans. So if the negative effects of teflon concern you, opt for porcelain, as long as you can pick it up easily and without burning yourself.