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Old 02-28-2009, 12:53 PM   #11
Troy Archie
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I've been in love with my slow cooker this past week. I've been finding the less things you put in, the better. Whole chicken legs with skin on and bone in have been my favorite. I put 2-3 frozen legs in and put it on high for about 6 hours. As the legs thaw and cook they add moisture. I've been putting in more savory spices like a couple cinnamon sticks, star anise or curry paste with some kaffir lime leaves. Star anise is the best so far.

Oh and I'll just add one of the best parts about this is that the bones get really tender and you can just about eat every bit of them.
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Old 02-28-2009, 06:42 PM   #12
Patrick Yeung
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All this talk about slow cookers had me going home and stealing the one thats been sitting for ages in my parent's closet.

Now, Ive got a question though. How much of the nutrients is still in the food? I know that heat will degrade protein, as well as many vitamins etc etc. Any thoughts? Or is the amount lost negligibile.
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Old 02-28-2009, 06:53 PM   #13
Daniel Olmstead
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Since the heat is really low, I would imagine the nutrient profile would be near-optimal. But that's just speculation, I'm no nutritional expert.

I've got a slow-cooker I haven't used in years, but I'm intending to put it to work this week. Here's what I've been thinking:

1.5 pounds chicken breasts
2 cans organic diced tomatoes
1 can organic garbanzo beans
1 yellow onion
maybe a clove of garlic

...I'm at a bit of a loss regarding spices, though, and would love some suggestions. I'm thinking maybe a bay leaf and just a few dried italian herbs, but it could also go North African, with turmeric, cinnamon, coriander etc...I'm a little worried about spices in the slow cooker getting too powerful, though. Is this a legitimate fear? Or should I just plow ahead?
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Old 03-01-2009, 09:55 AM   #14
Troy Archie
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I keep finding that food in the slow cooker can come out a bit bland so I wouldn't worry too much about it being over powering. Things like mustard seed, cumin, coriander, paprika...come out really nice and savory in the slow cooker while dried herbs don't come out as nice. This is what I've found at least and I might have to just add more dried herbs...

I'd also saute your onions and garlic before you put them in. You could even add the tomatoes to the saute, cook until the oils separate and then put it all into the cooker. The extra 10 min prep can make a huge difference.

Patrick, don't sweat the small stuff.
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Old 03-01-2009, 12:17 PM   #15
Patrick Yeung
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Yeah, been reading more about it, thanks for the reassurance. I wasnt really too worried, just makin sure im gettin the most out of my expensive meat (relative to my vegetables at least) food, cause slow cooker just seems so convient for my college/work lifestyle. Now... gotta make sure those larger cuts are at least throughly cooked, and not just a breeding ground for bacteria... hehe

But, I found some great ideas for adding flavors.

DRIED FRUIT!

Imagine chicken thighs all tender and soft, then throwing in a handful of dried orange peels in there!

I also saw recipies where theyd throw in dates, figs, etc etc, in the latter parts of cooking. Theyd come out nice and moist, and add flavor without turning into mush.
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Old 06-23-2009, 05:37 AM   #16
Tony Ferous
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I never did buy a slow cooker, so thought id go do it, but it look like lead leaching is a potential issue with all ceramic crock pots!!

http://www.amazon.com/review/R25TQBSKF5GNGZ
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