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Thread: I've been recommended to buy a slow cooker. Which one is good?

  1. #1
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    I've been recommended to buy a slow cooker. Which one is good?

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I saw this US based review on slow cookers and it recommended the KitchenAid brand. I don't know what other brands I should look at.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h9__CI_oLwQ

    I looked up the KitchenAid Australian web site and I found a similar model but I'm put off by the price, at $259. I don't know how often I'd use a slow cooker (it's not like I'm making coffee, right?).

    https://kitchenaid.com.au/products/a...lt=5KSC6222ASS

    I just don't want to spend hundreds of dollars on one only to have it sitting in the cupboard most of the time. I saw a Sunbeam slow cooker at Coles for $40, but I don't know if that's too cheap. How much should I spend to get a slow cooker with the right features?

    I live on my own but I have a couple of friends over once a week on average.

  2. #2
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    Im definitely an equipment snob but have, in general, found that cheap supermarket slowcookers have been just fine! Perhaps temperature control on the two or three settings might not be as precise as a more expensive brand but you work that out along the way.

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    Hi Pamount,

    I've had a slow cooker, and a Sous Vide, which I love, but it's a different style of cooking compared to the slow cooking you are after...

    I use the Sous Vide regularly but don't slow cook regularly...I reckon for what you are after, just get a Crock Pot or a supermarket brand, that way you can cook up your lamb shanks or whatever when you feel like it and it won't matter if you don't use it for a while. Also, if you are using the cooker regularly, you may wish to stick with it or upgrade when you have learned how to cook what you want on the basic model.

    Cheers.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Erimus's Avatar
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    Do not get the KMart own brand, (Homemaker). Same as everything you buy what you can afford, except cheap and nasty, there's a reason why it's so cheap.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member WhatEverBeansNecessary's Avatar
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    I have got a slow cooker/pressure cooker in one. I think we got it from myer/david jones for around the $100-$150 range. I use it almost weekly for the last 5 ish years and apart from melting at the bottom when I accidentily left it on the electric cooktop that was on, it doesn't miss a beat.

    Will often make soups etc this time of year by throwing veggies, meat, spices in the night before, takes about 5 mins and 24 hours later dinner is done for the next couple of nights.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Mornin Pamount, we've owned a sunbeam slow cooker for more years than I care to remember, in fact its almost an antique, but, still going strong.

    Lives in a bottom cupboard during summer, but comes into its own during the cooler months, great for soups, stews, lamb shanks and the like, a simple device that does a good job.

    Ours is similar to the pic below except for no digital readout, simply a high low switch, and that's about all you need, they are available from the likes of Target for around the $55 mark.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Barry O'Speedwagon's Avatar
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    I own KitchenAid blenders and food processors, but my slow cooker is a Sunbeam and does the job just fine. Slow cooking is a simple process. If you need to sear meat prior to slow cooking, do so in a fry pan and deglase with a bit of what ever stock / water you are using and put in slow cooker.

  8. #8
    Senior Member rusty888's Avatar
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    Ive had the one Yelta showed.

    The top of the range ones are not worth but the cheap ones I find also not good. Get a rrp $200 one for nearly 40% off which the often come out at.

    The only feature worth having is the one that turns to just warming after the cooking. That will make a huge difference.
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  9. #9
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    I think the low on the cheap ones may not be low enough.

    Im thinking i should get a mid price ranged one. The cheapy has been fine. Did a pretty good fig and lemon jam recently.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    The low on our Sunbeam is ideal, keeps the contents at a very low simmer, just below 100C, bear in mind dropping temps to down to around 60C creates an ideal environment for bacteria to multiply, its referred to as the danger zone.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    The low on our Sunbeam is ideal, keeps the contents at a very low simmer, just below 100C, bear in mind dropping temps to down to around 60C creates an ideal environment for bacteria to multiply, its referred to as the danger zone.
    Yes, That's the one we have as well, it's always done what I want...A good rule of thumb, at least for our purposes is 5C-60C is generally known as the danger zone in food safety. It's good to keep your product either higher than 60C or lower than 5C.

    Cheers.
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    I've got the Breville bsc560 and love it. The pan can be used on the stove top to sear your meat, which I find is really handy. Saves you from searing in a pan then transferring to your slow cooker. RRP is about $150 but I got mine for under $100 from the Breville seconds shop in Tingalpa, Brisbane. 7 litre capacity. Highly recommend.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Esky View Post
    I've got the Breville bsc560 and love it. The pan can be used on the stove top to sear your meat, which I find is really handy. Saves you from searing in a pan then transferring to your slow cooker. RRP is about $150 but I got mine for under $100 from the Breville seconds shop in Tingalpa, Brisbane. 7 litre capacity. Highly recommend.
    There is a Breville factory outlet in Melbourne, I should check it out.

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    I wound up buying a Russell Hobbs RHSC600 6 liter slow cooker today.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pamount View Post
    I wound up buying a Russell Hobbs RHSC600 6 liter slow cooker today.
    Looks and sounds good to me Pamount, lets know how you get on with it.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yelta View Post
    Looks and sounds good to me Pamount, lets know how you get on with it.
    So far I've used it twice, to make a simple recipe called "Chicken with Camembert Sauce", recipe at:

    Chicken With Camembert Sauce |

    The first time I a bit of the sauce burned itself onto the inside of the ceramic insert. I managed to get it off with Bicarbonate of Soda on a wet sponge, after soaking the inside of the insert. After that I read it is good to use spray oil to coat the inside of the ceramic pot before adding the ingredients, so as to avoid problems with burnt on sauce stains. I tried this trick the second time I used the slow cooker and it worked.

    Both times I enjoyed the meal and I'm looking at trying a different recipe next time.

    As it's a 6 litre slow cooker it's a case of "why buy dumbbells when I can just lift the ceramic insert?" The ceramic insert is so heavy I have to be really careful not to drop it when I'm carrying it around.
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  17. #17
    Senior Member Yelta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pamount View Post
    So far I've used it twice, to make a simple recipe called "Chicken with Camembert Sauce", recipe at:

    Chicken With Camembert Sauce |

    The first time I a bit of the sauce burned itself onto the inside of the ceramic insert. I managed to get it off with Bicarbonate of Soda on a wet sponge, after soaking the inside of the insert. After that I read it is good to use spray oil to coat the inside of the ceramic pot before adding the ingredients, so as to avoid problems with burnt on sauce stains. I tried this trick the second time I used the slow cooker and it worked.

    Both times I enjoyed the meal and I'm looking at trying a different recipe next time.

    As it's a 6 litre slow cooker it's a case of "why buy dumbbells when I can just lift the ceramic insert?" The ceramic insert is so heavy I have to be really careful not to drop it when I'm carrying it around.
    Sounds like your right into it Pamount, well done.

    Have used mine a couple of times in the past week, latest effort a big pot of pork and beans, good winter standby.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Rocky's Avatar
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    We have the same model and have had many fine meals from it, particularly before Mrs Rocky retired.
    She would put it on before she went to work and I would monitor it and turn it off when I thought the dish was cooked.
    I would imagine that a timer would be useful for folks who worked and could not he there to switch it off after a given number of hours.
    For single people they are an absolute must. No more arrive home from work and spend an hour cooking.



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