“ Brand: Salter / Fuel Type: Electric / Range Type: Free-Standing „
The Salter Essentials Slow Cooker is an absolute staple in my mum's kitchen. I purchased her this one for Christmas two years ago having raved on about my Cookworks, but she needed something bigger.
The Salter costs anywhere from £12.99 - £19.99 depending on where you shop. I was very lucky to get this for £9.99 in a closing down sale, but I don't think anything under £15 is unreasonable.
The slow cooker is a generous 3 litre version which means you can prepare food for a family of four or five, cater for parties (soup, spag bol and chilli con carne are real hits!) bulk cook to freeze, make baby food pots, or make two or three days worth of food at a time. It's very versatile.
It's styled in white plastic, with durable plastic handles to the sides. Inside, there is a white crock pot made of ceramic, and a glass lid with a stainless steel rim, and a white plastic handle. There is a small steam release hole trimmed with stainless steel in the lid. It bears the Salter logo in silver grey to the front, and has a red LED power indicator light. The unit has a white arrow knob to the front so you can select your preference - off, low, high and auto.
The Salter Essentials Slow Cooker comes with a white power lead and fused UK plug, warranty card which you have to fill out and send back for a 2 year warranty, small recipe ideas book, and instructional manual. Overall it looks the business, and is very easy to keep clean, too - the lid and crock pot can go in the dishwasher and the rest of the unit is easily cleaned with a quick wipe with a damp soft cloth.
It couldn't be easier to use. All you need to do is fill with your ingredients (say, chicken and veg for a casserole), cover with stock and put the lid on. I like to give four hours on high for a chicken casserole and a minimum of six for braised steak. Soups need about three hours before liquidising (which you can do right in the crock pot with a stick blender) and larger joints of meat about 8 hours to become melt in the mouth, fall off the bone tender.
It might sound a long time but in practice it's brilliant - you can throw in your ingredients before you go to work and come home to a nice ready to serve meal. It's safe - my slow cooker has never so much as dribbled a bit, or you can at the very least set it off and go off elsewhere in the house safe in the knowledge your fuss free dinner is cooking - it's ideal for me with a baby, I can look after her all day and still serve up a nice meal for my husband when he comes home from work - very 1950s! He can then take the rest to work the next day. It's a real time and moneysaver.
My mum loves the Salter Essentials Slow Cooker not just for it's looks and ease of use but because she can make a full pie filling, cook fish, make curries, soups and stews (and you can throw in dumplings 20 minutes before serving to make a hearty meal even more filling) without having to make lots of mess or spend hours in the kitchen. I am so glad I bought it for her and will be buying one this Christmas for my mother in law.
Overall I cannot recommend it enough - there is nothing about this slow cooker I don't love, my mum has had hers two years and it's still as good as new and in regular use. When something is so simple to use there is no need for bells and whistles, and this is a good example of a nice budget gadget which is actually very useful and doesn't end up stuck in the back of the cupboard with the sandwich maker and the smoothie maker. I highly recommend the Salter Essentials if you have a need for a slightly larger capacity slow cooker - it's ideal.