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LOW AND SLOW: TAFE NSW cookery queen Sara Morley said late autumn was the ideal time to embrace slow cooking.
Aaaah autumn, nature’s grand finale, where the sun’s sparkle softens and the leaves fall as if to say a final farewell to summer.
Anyway, enough of that soppy stuff; the true beauty of autumn is that it heralds the arrival of the relatively-guilt-free eating season.
And what better way to embrace the season than to tuck into a hearty slow-cooked meal.
Speaking on her regular TAFE Buds segment on ABC Riverina this morning, TAFE NSW cookery queen Sara Morley offered some timely tips on using the popular kitchen aide.
She told ABC Riverina’s Simon Wallace that the most important decision was the cut of meat.
“A good rule of thumb is the less fat and tendons in a cut of meat, the less you need to cook it,” Ms Morley said.
“To cook low and slow, you want meat with a lot of sinew and muscle – think lamb shoulder or pork knuckle – so it breaks down the muscle and creates that lovely, gelatinous tender flavour.
“Generally, the cheaper the cut of meat, the longer you need to cook it for and the better suited it is to the slow cooker.”
Ms Morley said to abide by the “less is more” mantra when adding extras to your slow-cooked dish.
“I tend to keep it simple as slow cooking injects so much flavour anyway,” she said.
“Feel free to put a bit of liquid in, whether it’s water, wine or stock, but keep it only to a few tablespoons maximum.
“Adding herbs is fine but opt for the hardier herbs, like thyme and rosemary.”
Ensuring meat was browned first in the frypan and then added to the slow cooker was also an important step, Ms Morley said.
And if you don’t own a slow cooker, she said using a crockpot on the stovetop and then finishing off the dish in the oven had the same effect.
If you’d like a career in food, TAFE NSW offers a range of courses to help get you into the job of your dreams – visit www.tafensw.edu.au or call 131 601.