|Image courtesy of Williams-Sonoma|
Slow cookers aren't very glamorous. If you're like me, you might have memories from the 70's of pallid chickens in watery sauce, or grayish beef... but this baby is nothing like what you remember.
It's biggest advantage is that it takes the place of a Dutch oven, because the insert is usable on both the stove-top and in the oven. So you can brown something and then put it on to simmer for about a million years - no more flaccid, creepy beige chicken!
And they're good for lots of other things too - you can start oatmeal before you go to bed and have oatmeal for breakfast. This alone has revolutionized breakfast in our home; the difference between a bowl of cold cereal and a bowl of oatmeal is vast.
We also bake sweet potatoes in this. Just wash them, put them in the cooker without drying them, and after 6 to 8 hours on low, you have SWEET POTATOES. In the summer, without heating your oven. Brilliant.
Now this baby is far from cheap, but we figured that we would spend this much on three or four meals in a decent restaurant. (we live in a big city, remember) If owning this gizmo would improve our eating habits and keep us home more often, it would more than pay for itself. So far, I think we're moving rapidly into the "economy" part of my equation.