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Chulent in oven instead of slow cooker

EmpireState Dec 19, 2013 07:45 AM

I normally make my chulent in a slow cooker. If anyone has made the same recipe in a slow cooker and in the oven, is there a difference in taste? If it's worth the extra trouble, how many hours should I keep it on a high(er) temperature in the oven before turning the oven down to 200 degrees? (So that is adequately cooked before Shabbat). Thanks.

  1. g
    GilaB Dec 19, 2013 07:51 AM

    I've done it on the blech and in the stove, and haven't noticed a difference in taste from a slow cooker as long as the water level is calibrated properly. You could put it in the oven at 200 at midday on Friday, or at 350 for an hour or two before.

    1. d
      DeisCane Dec 19, 2013 08:08 AM

      The big difference is that you get a crust.

      1. weinstein5 Dec 19, 2013 09:26 AM

        I completely agree with DeisCane and GilaB - no taste difference and you get a crust which was one of my favorite parts of the Shabbos Cholent my Mom would make growing up - but you do have to be careful and make sure there is enough water.

        1. a
          AdinaA Dec 19, 2013 10:13 AM

          There may be a potential fire hazard, probably not for the OP, but anyone cooking in inexpensive or inexpensively renovated housing (including many rental apartments) should be aware that ranges left on over Shabbat can cause the wall behind the stove to catch fire; that this can also happen with a blech placed atop a stove. This is extremely unlikely to happen in well-constructed buildings. As I understand it, this happens when a range is installed in a kitchen against a wall nor originally constructed with fireproof material. But I thought I would mention it.

          Also note that many modern ranges have a safety mechanism that turns them off after a few hours (Sabbath mode versions exist)

          Apologies to Empire State for interrupting your thread with this public safety announcement.

          2 Replies
          1. re: AdinaA
            EmpireState Dec 19, 2013 06:00 PM

            No apologies necessary. As a matter of fact, you saved me from a lot of aggravation. My oven is relatively new. I checked the manual and it does indeed shut off automatically after 12 hours. No oven chulent for us! Thanks and shabbat shalom.

            1. re: EmpireState
              AdinaA Dec 20, 2013 06:02 AM

              Oh, I'm imagining you waking up tomorrow to a cold oven - and nothing to eat!

          2. m
            Moishefrompardes Dec 19, 2013 11:08 AM

            It is way better in the oven, ive posted my recipe here before. basically use raw frozen meat, cooked beans raw potatos very little liquid sauteed onion garlic. right before shabbos 175 till lunch.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Moishefrompardes
              ganeden Dec 20, 2013 06:10 AM

              at our shul, we cook at 275. Raw meat, beans, barley, water spices and kishka on top. It's a new electric GE oven, and does not shut off. The cholent occasionally overflows. We wouldn't cook like that at home.

              1. re: ganeden
                AdinaA Dec 20, 2013 06:42 AM

                Why not?

                1. re: ganeden
                  bagelman01 Dec 20, 2013 06:56 AM

                  Although I have modern ultra high end kitchens, our house was originally built in 1804. There are many original fireplaces. The fireplace in the living room has an oven built into the brick wall next to the fireplace. During the winter there is a continual fire going and I can place the cholent pot in the brick oven Friday about 3pm and bank the log fire. By Shabbos morning there is a bed of coals left in the fireplace and the oven has been holding at a low temp overnight. A perfect cholent emerges for lunch. Made the 'old fashioned' way.
                  I don't make cholent in a slow cooker or on a blech. In warmer weather when we don't have the fileplace going, I use my Thermador warming drawers in the dining room and set for 190 degrees F They will stay on for up to 20 hours.

                  1. re: bagelman01
                    AdinaA Dec 20, 2013 07:16 AM

                    If you are trying to make us all insanely jealous, it's working. I console myself with the photo of mark Bittman's kitchen http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/11...

                    1. re: AdinaA
                      bagelman01 Dec 20, 2013 07:27 AM

                      Adina, I'm not trying to make anyone jealous. Sometimes the old ways work best. There are both advantages and disadvantages of living out of the city. I make a good living, but there's no way I could afford or even find what I have in the city, even the outer boros.

                      The photo of Bittman's kitchen looks similar in scope to the galley in the studio above our garage.

              2. d
                Dovid Dec 29, 2013 05:34 PM

                Stovetop cholent has a greater depth of flavor than cholent made in a slow cooker. It is also more likely that the food at the bottom will scorch. For this reason, I line the bottom of the pot with cabbage leaves, and layer meat and potatoes above that, keeping the beans and barley on top.

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