I’m well aware I’m becoming a bit of a bore on my blog, talking about how things are different in our household since having our daughter. But it’s so true! One thing that is certain is I have less time to prep and cook elaborate meals. While ready meals and ‘slam in the oven’ food was super helpful for the first few months with a newborn, for me it was soon time to get back to home cooked fodder.
I’d been toying with the idea of getting a slow cooker for a while, as I imagined it would help me cook healthy and tasty meals with ease. Also now P is on solid food, I wanted to get her eating what we are having sooner rather than later, so once I go back to work we can all eat together without me having to make two different meals.
With this in mind, when I was kindly offered the Vonshef 6.5l electric slow cooker to try out, I jumped at the chance. The 6.5l version is a good size for us, as the plan is once I am more experienced with a slow cooker I can cook larger portions and freeze half for another day.
I’d always imagined slow cookers to be clunky and old fashioned, but the Vonshef version I have is rather stylish. Not that my kitchen is particularly modern or very well co-ordinated, but the slow cooker certainly doesn’t look out of place sitting on the work surface. If you had plenty of cupboard space you could pop it away when not in use, but with our limited kitchen storage I’ve decided to just leave ours out.
I like that the Vonshef cooker has fast, slow and auto settings. The first time I used it, I fiddled around a bit too much and kept changing it from slow to fast, so the next time I set it to auto and let the cooker do the hard work. This will be perfect for when I am back at work as I won’t be here to mess with it all day!
My first two cooks in it have been chicken casserole (you can read the recipe here). To make life easy for myself, I prepped my vegetables the night before I was making my casserole once little miss had gone to bed, and then in the morning just popped everything into the slow cooker. It cooked everything beautifully; the vegetables were soft but not falling apart, and the chicken was tender and moist. My husband loved the casserole and my daughter tucked in as well, which was lovely to see as it was her first taste of chicken.
Something to note is that as I was making a portion for my 8-month-old, normal stock cubes are too salty for little ones. I used a Boots baby stock cube to start with, then once I had taken out a portion for her, I added a normal stock cube and left it to cook for another hour or so.
The slow cooker is pretty easy to clean too, what I would say is don’t leave it too long before you wash it out though as it will be harder work. But with a good scrub the pot and lid came up nice and clean, ready for the next use.
For anyone who wants to cook homely meals with ease, I would definitely suggest investing in a slow cooker. And, having tried it for myself, I can highly recommend the Vonshef electric slow cooker. It does everything you need it to, and with a price tag of just £34.99 you can’t go wrong.