Friday, September 2, 2011

My Answer to the CrockPot Girls' Instant Fame: The Crock-Pot's Real Mystique

Have y'all LIKED "The Crock Pot Girls" on Facebook yet? If you haven't, you may well be the only one. Their fan-base has grown from 48 to over a million in just a few days. GAH!

(This makes me very sorry I haven't posted more slow-cooker recipes here at FriedOkra. Why didn't y'all say sumpm?)

Apparently the amazing growth of the Facebook page on which, as of five minutes ago, pretty much everyone in the whole world shares recipes and stories of complete-life-transformation-by-slow-cooker, started by three cute little Texan ladies is raising some major skepticism; in this incredulous post (and subsequent comments) at, questions of murder and intrigue and Facebots and hackery take the sweet, innocent, exclamation-point-and all-caps lovin', slow-cookin' Mamas to (possibly-undue) task, questioning everything from their actual existence in real human form to their alleged wily-but-vaguely-questionable use of a new Facebook fan-gathering feature.

(Insert evil, sinister plot-thickening music here.)

Seems some are baffled as to how a fan-page for a lowly small-kitchen appliance like the slow-cooker has garnered such a happy herd of enthusiastic and devoted followers.


And now? I'm 'on crack this case wide open.

See, we aren't baffled, are we? We love our slow-cookers - "They make our lives so much easier!" - and we love our slow-cooker recipes. Why wouldn't we LIKE a Facebook Fan Page about this glorious gadget in thundering droves? We are all about that slow-cooker, ma'am! It's the best invention EVER.

(Except possibly the self-timing coffee pot, or is that just me?)

However. The plain truth is that at least where slow-cookers are concerned, we've already demonstrated that we are easily duped. Because there's a simple, plain, somewhat painful fact about slow-cookers that stares us all boldly in the face, as hard as we try to avoid admittin' it to ourselves, isn't there?

Come on. You know it as well as I do. Don't you? And I think the real mystery boils down to mama-brain. The kind of mama-brain that worked it's memory-erasing magic on us a few months (or years, in my case) after we delivered our first-borns and we got on board with the idea of havin' another little bundle of joy. You know what I mean, right? (I promise I'm goin' somewhere with this.)

Fact is, there is pretty much nothin' we can do in a slow-cooker we can't do in the oven or on the stove top. To make a really great dish in a slow-cooker, you do exactly the same work you'd do if you were cookin' using a more traditional method. Slow-cookin' is just one-pot cookin' with a big ol' handy-dandy wall-plug, isn't it? And it's SLOWER. SLO-O-O-O-OW-E-E-E-ER!

Hear me out. To cook the best pot roast in the world in a traditional way, you sear the meat, add your Granny's secret ingredients, shove it in the oven and walk away for two or three hours. Oui? And the only differences to the whole process when you do it in the slow-cooker are that A) you actually have TWO dirty pots to wash up instead of one (can't sear meat in the stoneware of a slow-cooker), and B) you can walk away for EIGHT TO TWELVE hours.

(Oh, and slow-cooking often conveniently erases the guilt of plopping a couple cans of cream-of-whatevah soup into a "wholesome" meal. Can I get an Amen?)


Now I know that 8-12 hour walk-away time is awesome for work-away-from-home Moms (a selling point, even!), and please do not get me wrong, I am ever-so-glad for the slow-cooker myself (I own two, and I use 'em. A lot.) because even I, Megan-Homebody-FriedOkra, do occasionally wish to leave my house from time to time. But let's face it, truth be told, slow-cooker cooking really isn't as magically EASIER as we've convinced ourselves it is.

The real reason we believe that slow-cooking's SO MUCH EASIER, and thus a life-changingly revolutionaryish thang, is that by the time those eight-to-twelve hours have elapsed and we sit down with our families to eat the (shhh...) exact same meal we'd have eaten if we'd only started the process three hours ago, our Mama-brains have forgotten all about the 7 AM labor-pain of searing and slicing and dicing and can-opening and dumping and washing up, and it seems to us that HEY! Somebody else made dinner while we were off for most of the day doin' whatever we do when we're not cooking.


Here is what I say to Al when we sit down to a meal out of my slow-cooker. Every time! So often that he can and does mouth it along with me, verbatim: Gosh I love my Crock Pot. It's like havin' a cook!
And havin' paid staff to cook for me whenever I want, at the one-time low, low price of about $25 bucks (on sale now at Amazon, y'all!)?

Well heck yeah, I'll LIKE that every time.

Mystery solved.

Now I just need a plug-in house cleaner.

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  1. I love my crock pot! I have liked the Crock Pot Girls too and am having fun watching them grow!

  2. Oh to be a fly on the wall at your house, you and Al are hilarious. I can just picture it all happening as I read along.

  3. LOL I actually do not have a crock pot and make everything in the oven (usually in my stoneware covered roaster)! I keep meaning to buy one, tho!


  4. Here in the hotlands we use our slow cookers because they do not heat up the whole house!

  5. I've seen lots of friends liking Crock Pot Girls on FB but still haven't liked them myself yet! (gasp!)

    I love my crock pot! Mine just served up a pot roast this very evening! :) Something I especially love about my crock pot: It's a special stoneware pot which can be used on the gas hob so there's only one pan to wash!!! Having said that, I have actually made the switch over to NEVER searing my meat before slow cooking it. Yup. And guess what?! Still comes out perfect, so I am glad to cut that step out! :) Today I threw a beef joint in the crock pot raw, on top of a bit of oil and some onion rings, sprinkled a bit of salt on it, and banged the lid on. 8 hours later, YUMMO!

    I also love that it means I avoid having to cook during the crazy zone where the kids all drive myself and each other batty at once for at least an hour! I'm free to sit amongst them with my fingers in my ears and my head between my knees instead of having to cook and sort them out all at the same time!

  6. OH AMEN!

    I have pondered this mystery for the past few years, but being the kind that doesn't stir up controversy, I confined the questioning to my head.

    But YES! The Crock Pot is the SAME THING as an OVEN. For Peter's sake, people. And I'm sorry, but my crock pot was a stinkin' pain to wash. I gave it away years ago and I haven't looked back.

    I can understand why people in the south wouldn't want their oven on for 2-3 hours. (Here in the north? That's a bonus!) And I totally understand why working women would want/need a crock pot.

    But for everyone else? No need to have another kitchen gadget. Just do what your grandma did.

    I will no go to bed feeling validated.

  7. Great post!! I think you are really on to something here... It all makes sense now! :)

  8. gosh I love megan...she is better than a crock pot. ♥

    oh and yes...the new teeth coming are they going to fit? eeekkkk....I sort of miss her perfect little smile. shhhh...don't tell.