Thursday, February 24, 2011

Simplifying life

My friends ask me when I cook all the meals I talk about. There's some planning involved and good kitchen appliances are beneficial too. My latest catch is a slow cooker. Back in 1992 I was introduced to this kitchen tool in a shop in Portland, Oregon. There was a demonstration on the slow cooker and I thought it was a great invention. I wanted to take one home, but those machines are heavy and I never got to take one to Belgium.

The slow cooker had slipped my mind, until this January I saw several cook books with slow cooker recipes in Florida. I scrolled through the recipes and again, it drew my attention. But there were still the same objections: how would I take one home??

In Belgium, people are not familiar with slow cookers. They prefer pressure cookers. I own a pressure cooker too and I do use it on a regular basis. But can you believe the joy I felt, when I saw the slow cooker in a local supermarket??? I didn't hesitate this time and I got one for me and one for my friend. I was anxious to try it out and discover new recipes. It does what it's supposed to do: you add the ingredients to the pan in the morning and you leave for work. When you get home, dinner is ready and you can serve yourself. How about that? Is that a time saver or what?

Man, how I love this appliance! In only 7 days it has prepared as many dishes. This is the perfect kitchen tool for all those who have no time to cook. By the time you come home from work, your house smells wonderful of that delicious home cooked stew. How about that? Does that sound like a plan? It sure did to me! Think of making your own chicken stock in the slow cooker. Chili con carne, coq-au-vin, hotchpotch, a good old fashioned pea-soup, sticky chicken thighs and thick chowders. Or barbecued shredded pork to fill those soft buns with?

So next August, when we go back to Florida, I'll get myself some cookbooks on slow cookers. Looking forward to that! And in the meantime, I'll cook some more chilis, stews and soups and pot roasts. Long live kitchen appliances that simplify our life!

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