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I'm not the best cook in the world, so I was recommended by a friend to get a slow cooker as you can make a whole host of meals in it, but with very little fuss or effort involved - which to me sounds perfect.
I got a Breville one eventually as it is a good quality make, but manufactures goods at very affordable prices. Breville slow cookers are available three sizes, which are 4.5L, 5.5L, and 60.5L. It doesn't matter which slow cooker you purchase, they all look the same and have the same features to it, obviously the only thing that is different is the capacity it holds.
I really like the design of my Breville slow cooker. It has a stainless steel base, with a thick, black crock pot inside the base unit. To finish, you have a simple glass lid with black plastic handle. The design is simple, yet quite classy looking in my opinion and although this was quite a cheap slow cooker in comparison to other brands, I don't think that is evident by the look of my slow cooker.
I like the fact that this is quite a basic slow cooker. You simply plug it in and away you go. This one, like many others, has three settings which are low, high and auto. They pretty much speak themselves, but I tend to use auto unless I am in a bit of a rush and need something cooked that bit quicker, in which case I use the high setting. By using the auto setting, you can put something into cook first thing in the morning and come back for work and find your meal cooked to perfection as auto cooks it and keeps it at the right temperature for you throughout the day until ready to serve.
The base unit has two large, easy to grip handles which enable you to move the cooker, even when hot wherever you want without the fear of getting burnt. Obviously the crock bowl is really hot whilst cooking, but does cool down within 10 minutes of being removed from the cooker base. You can serve your meal directly from the crock bowl or by transferring it to other bowls/plates.
I have found that by using this slow cooker, I have really been able to branch out with the variety of meals I can serve. I have done roast dinners, chillis, curries, spaghetti bolnase, other pasta dishes and more with this slow cooker and it is just so hassle free. I had never used a slow cooker before had moved into my house and now I couldn't be without one and I definitely picked a winner when it comes to my Breville one.
It is so simple to use and does a fantastic job without containing any fancy gizmos and gadgets which is perfect for me. As it is so simple, it has meant that Breville have been able to keep costs down. The 4.5L will cost you around £24.99, the 5.5L one will cost £27.99, with the 6.5L one being around £33.99. I would suggest that you would only need the bigger one if you have a rather large family or entertain a lot as even the smaller one can hold enough to feed my family.
The product numbers for this slow cooker are as follows VTP041, VTP062, VTP043, should you be interested in purchasing one. You can get one of these from most supermarkets and electrical retailers. This does come with an instruction manual which is quite basic, but tells you everything you need to know.
Overall I am so impressed with my Breville Slow Cooker, that I would highly recommend it and would definitely buy another Breville in future if the need arises. It is so simple to use and looks pretty stylish too. It is well priced for what it is and with Breville you know you are getting a good quality make. You can use it to cook a variety of meals and the bowl itself is quite large so will hold a decent amount of food. The unit and bowl are both easy to keep clean and it really has helped me provide my family with a larger range tasty meals. The glass lid is nice and thick, not too cheap and flimsy so won't shatter/break easily and the bowl is heavy and sturdy too. This cooker is a good size so will tuck away nicely into a corner.
All in all I don't really have a bad word to say about this slow cooker as you have probably guessed by now so if you are in need of a slow cooker but don't want to spend too much, then I suggest you take a look at this one. Highly recommended.
Great review! Unsure if I am brave enough though - I can only imagine burning the food or it taking longer than expected to cook....!
hillhead 01.07.2010 01:54
I could not be without mine. Got any chicken recipes for it?
pgn0 30.06.2010 22:32
I could slow-cook a suckling pig, whole, in a 60.5L one of these - impressive! ;o) Nice review, aided by the fact that as prices continue to rise (out of line with inflation, lease note!!), one of these is great for making best use of cheaper cuts of meat. I do like to make my own Boston Baked Beans in mine though - a small orange Pifco one with a brown crock, that I won in a Boy Scout's draw at a local supermarket many years ago.
The Breville ITP136 3.5 Litre Slow Cooker has three cooking functions helping you choose ... more
the best cooking method for your needs. Select the high function to cook your food within about four hours or the low setting for eight hours between preparation and serving. 225 watts. Capacity 3.5 litres. Removable bowl. Ceramic bowl. 3 settings Low, high and keep warm. Keep warm function. Toughened glass lid. Dishwasher safe glass lid. Non-slip feet.