Before I start, let me tell you one massive fact about me - I'm no Delia Smith. I like to cook and get great satisfaction from seeing my kids eat a whole meal of nutritious, home-made goodness but I absolutely loathe the cleaning up after. I hate it with a passion that makes me linger in the bath-tub of an evening, praying that The Beef has had the imitative to do the washing up, just so that I don't have to stand hunched over a bowl full of soap suds and caked on gravy.
With that in mind, it's no surprise that when I cook, I look for the easiest thing to prepare and make. Don't get me wrong, I don't routinely feed my children ready meals, however I do cut corners to just make life that little bit simpler. So when it comes to a Sunday roast you can imagine my horror at the prospect. In the end I relent to cooking it because I know it's the entire family's favourite meal but seriously, the mess!
SO I BOUGHT A SLOW COOKER
For months I've been hearing about the awesomeness that is the slow cooker. I've seen recipes pinned and shared around the web, with shouts of It's so easy and worth its weight in gold. Easy you say? I'll have me some of that please. So got myself one and slap bang in the middle of the week, I cooked a whole chicken inside it and do you know what? It was flipping gorgeous!
What I did was really simple and went as follows:
Roughly chop two large onions into chunks
Layer the onions on to the bottom of the slow cooker
Remove chicken from packaging and give it a good rinse under the tap
Grab some herbs, spices and seasoning and rub it generously all over the chicken - I used paprika, a little rock salt, black pepper and mixed herbs - literally anything you have in the cupboard.
Place the chicken breast down in the slow cooker, on top of your onion layer
Put the lid on
Put the slow cooker on high
Cook all day - mine was in for 5-6 hours and came out wonderfully cooked
It's really that easy. What you get as a result is a beautifully tender, juicy chicken that literally melts off the bones shouting, "Eat me, eat me!"
I served the chicken with roast potatoes, broccoli, peas and carrots and used the chicken juices with those lovely cooked onions and spices, to make my own gravy which is easy to make - just pop the juices in a saucepan and stir in some flour bit by bit, until the gravy thickens. If it's a bit lumpy just run it through a sieve before serving.
Sadly I had to do the dishes after cooking that beast but with so much meat left over and ideas whizzing about in my head, as I planned my next food concoction, I stood at the sink satisfied that I'd finally made something worth eating.
Now it's your turn, what are your favourite slow cooker recipes and did owning one change your whole outlook on cooking?
Stacey started blogging to try and regain a little bit of sanity and isn't entirely sure if it's worked. She has three children, a significant other and a lot on her hands. They're full stocked, raring to go and prepared for all adventures, including the Zombie Apocalypse!
Blogs at: Five's a Fellowship