on December 7, 2009
I'm a guy and have done only basic cooking and even less with a slow cooker. So please take this into account.
I purchased this cooker even thought it had no reviews because most of the other cookers had such a wide variety of star ratings . . . I took a risk . . . and I'm not disappointing.
This slow cooker is all metal, except of course for the lid which is tempered glass and the pot which is ceramic or whatever they are made of. Even the handle on the top of the lid is metal as are the handles on the side of the cooker and seem very solid. None of this cheap plastic with a shiny silver coating stuff. The pot itself is obviously heavy and durable; and the handles on the pot are conveniently placed and formed making it very easy to lift out of the cooking container without burning yourself even when completely full.
The electronic controls are very easy to use with the typical warm, low, medium and high settings and a two hour automatic warm setting after the cooking cycle is finished, and a push of the timer setting button will increase the cook time for 30 minutes while in the cooking cycle. The LCD panel for the controls lights up when any of the buttons are pushed to make reading the settings easier and an icon of a cooking pot turns on once the slow cooker is actually cooking.
This slow cooker is very attractive and would compliment most any kitchen. The overall impression of the slow cooker is that it is of high quality and sound construction. I am looking forward to many years use of this slow cooker but if any problems crop up during the next several months I will edit this post to let ya'll know.
So far I have cooked a whole five pound chicken which cooked to perfection in eight hours on low, and a roast which also cooked to tender perfection in eight hours (even though it wasn't a high quality cut).
So in conclusion I would highly recommend this slow cooker on the basis of the limited use I have had with it cooking two meals.
on November 7, 2010
The idea of a slow cooker has always appealed to me. Place ingredients in cooker. Leave. Return. Eat. What's not to like? Well, we tried two different models over the years and in both cases, no matter what we prepared or how spicy, the food ended up tasting like the cooker instead of the food.
Spaghetti tonight? Tastes like the cooker.
Say! The cooker flavor is particularly apparent in the beef stew this evening.
Firehouse chili? Nope. It's slow cooker again.
I don't remember what brands we purchased in the past. I just know that we gave up because everything had a taste that wasn't a good taste. Whatever we prepared ended up kind of ... well ... crockpotty.
And yet over the years slow cookers have come along (so we'd heard) and meal ideas finally branch beyond beans or beef stew, so with some investigation, we decided to try again. This would be the last try.
We picked this model because it would fit nicely in the corner of the counter, it's simple in appearance, offers that handy warming feature (as many do) and falls within a comfortable price range. We bought it in a local shop instead of from Amazon because we weren't hopeful and anticipated having to return it for refund. Amazon has a great return policy, but it's a hassle by default.
Good news! The meals we've prepared so far have tasted like the meals we prepared! The Asian-Style Chicken tastes just like that! (A whole onion, lots of garlic, about six inches of ginger, add sprigs of cilantro if you love it, all pureed in a food processor; mix puree with a can of coconut milk -- not coconut water or sweetened coconut milk -- add 1/4 cup soy sauce, about 1/4 cup of brown sugar, a few drops of hot sesame oil...maybe a dollop of peanut butter, too! Maybe red chili flakes if you like 'em. Pour into slow cooker pot, add lots of boneless, skinless chicken thighs and cook on low for about 7 hours...oh my goodness that is good.) Today I'm using the remaining chicken thighs to make chicken salad.
We also made a meat loaf (used some of the leftover coconut and puree juice from the chicken recipe in the meat loaf recipe). With a layer of allspice leaves on the bottom of the pot, the loaf (shaped to fit the pot, so not a loaf, precisely) lifted out with a spatula without coming apart, and yet it was juicy, tender and flavorful. Really good eats.
So. The food tastes like food and not the cooker. The pot insert takes up a lot of dishwasher space, so I just wash the pot and lid by hand, but you don't have to. So far I haven't oiled the pot before preparing a meal, but it has cleaned easily anyway and without staining. Ask me in six months if it's stained. (UPDATE Oct 2011 -- used frequently, still not stained.)
For now, we're on! Next up, Slow Cooker Lasagna (thank you Jessica Seinfeld for bringing this to our attention).
Knowing what I now know, I would buy it at Amazon without hesitation.
UPDATE: If you've looked at slow-cooker recipes, you'll notice that many start with "...first, brown the meat..." and jeesh, if I wanted to stand at the stove and brown batch after batch of the protein, I'd just make dinner at dinnertime. The whole point of a slow cooker is to NOT stand at the stove. And yet, sometimes it's a good idea to brown the protein. I do it like this -- season, marinate, whatever is required then place protein on a suitable pan, broil for a few minutes, then add to slow cooker with everything else. It's an extra step, to be sure, but at least it's not standing over the stove browning batch after batch of whatever. (Months later, still loving this thing.) Enjoy!
UPDATE 01 02 12: ...and if the ceramic pot DOES get stained, which it will probably do if you add a chopped beet to the lentil soup, it cleans perfectly by gently using a mild sink cleanser like Comet.
on February 2, 2010
I bought this slow cooker after owning several versions of the Rival crock pot. I had no complaints about the Rival, but I LOVE this Delonghi! Received it before this recent spell of winter storms to hit the Mid-Atlantic and it has been working ever since! The programmable aspect is easy to operate and the 2 hour warming after cooking is a great bonus feature as well! So far I have made soup, pot roast, a chicken dish and a batch of beans in preparation for the Super Bowl. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this slow cooker and worth every penny! Buy it, don't hesitate!
on March 14, 2010
I had a rival slow cooker for the last 10 years. After I couldn't use it anymore, I bought this one. I use this to make marinara, roast, stew, etc. Its has been great. Sometimes I wish it were bigger, but really I don't need it to be. It has two settings high and low and you set the number of hours you want to cook. After the cooking time it has an automatic 2 hr warming time.
I definitely recommend.
on November 19, 2012
Owning this slow cooker has been underwhelming to say the least. The machine was decent though nothing special (more on that, later), until it became unpredictable after three months (sometimes heating, sometimes not) and finally stopped working altogether after six. What has been terribly frustrating are the lengths that Delonghi has gone to in discouraging me from getting a replacement.
I read the reviews for the Delonghi DCP707 and several other makers' slow cookers pretty carefully before I purchased the product, and it seems as though slow cookers in general (including this one) have a pretty high fail rate. That said, several of the Delonghi reviews referred to solid (non plastic) construction. Unfortunately, those reviews must refer to an earlier model of the slow cooker, as the model I received was made entirely of metallic plastic, with the exception of the pot and lid. This was mildly disappointing but not a deal-breaker.
Functionally, the cooker seemed fine at first: the low setting and high setting worked with recipes I use, and the high setting did not cause the contents of the pot to boil, which is apparently a big problem in some slow cookers. The interface was pretty confusing, and the options for cooking and keeping warm were fairly limited, but again, this seems to be a common issue with low to middle end slow cookers. In the end, it all seemed acceptable once I got used to it. The cooker did the job it was designed to do, and it was somewhat more attractive than many of its competitors.
After three months, however, I found that every third meal I set up in the cooker simply failed to cook. The interface lit up, and the setting process was completely normal, but I returned several hours later to room temperature, uncooked food.
When I called Delonghi, they asked me to provide the serial number for my unit and to send in my receipt and wait. One thing that was immediately frustrating was the fact that everyone I dealt with seemed completely unconcerned that the unit had stopped working. There was no "sorry for the inconvenience" or "we stand behind the quality of our products," rather they seemed very interested in focusing on "The Requirements" for replacement. Next I received an email asking me to cut the electrical cord off the slow cooker, package it, and mail it to Delonghi. They also asked me to mail them a $15 check for shipping and handling. Again, there was no apology for selling me a defective product. A snippet of their note: "It has been determined that your unit is under warranty, and a replacement order has been entered for you. We ask that you send in the following requirements in order to receive your replacement...Upon receipt of the requirements, your replacement will be released for shipment to you."
When I called Delonghi to ask if there was any way to pick up the item in a store, the Delonghi agent said, "No, there is not. It had to come from our warehouse." I told her that I was pretty disappointed in my experience with purchasing a Delonghi product, and that I had expected them to stand a bit more firmly behind the quality of their product, she simply said, "I'm sorry to hear that, and I will put a note in your file." I asked if that was all Delonghi would do for me. She said, "Yes."
So I hung up, and sent in "The Requirements" and I just received confirmation that they will send me a new item. Two stars for honoring the warranty at all. Zero stars for quality of the initial product and customer service in replacing it. I will update once I have received the replacement unit and will certainly update if it fails in the next year.
UPDATE: Although I received an email confirming that an item was going to be shipped out on 11/28, almost 4 weeks later, I still have not received the replacement slow cooker. The person I spoke with blamed the whole thing on the warehouse, and he said that they will try to ship it out again soon, but it is currently out of stock. They won't reimburse my $15 shipping cost, but they MIGHT extend my warranty by 6 weeks.
on June 19, 2010
I agree with everything in the Dec. 2009 review written by That Was Cool. "TDurden1937." THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL, HIGH-QUALITY, REASONABLY PRICED SLOW-COOKER, made out of top-quality materials (e.g., the tempered glass lid with real stainless steel handle; removeable, heavy-duty white crockery insert that you actually cook in--cleans effortlessly!; and the stainless steel cooking shell with stainless steel handles).
I read all the reviews for this and many, many other slow cookers, and I cannot imagine ever having any of the problems with this cooker that the others have (e.g., one slow cooker actually started shedding black flecks from the coated surface after 5 or 6 uses--that won't happen with the beautiful white crockery cooking insert in the DeLonghi slow-cooker). I cannot recommend the DeLonghi slow-cooker highly enough!
Anyway, I won't repeat the excellent details in TDurden1937's review--please go to his review for those details. I wanted to write about the two successfully scrumptious meals (a pork and a beef dish) I've made with this slow-cooker in the one week we've had it to give you some details about how it works, in my experience.
I hadn't received the crockpot cookbooks I'd ordered, so I used recipes from the Web. In each case, I browned the meat thoroughly in some extra-virgin olive oil in a stainless steel saute pan, deglazed the pan with whatever liquid the recipe called for (to spatula up the precious meat browns from the pan), transferred the meat and browns/liquid to the slow-cooker--the crockery insert, I mean--cooked on high for two hours, followed by three hours cooking on the low setting--stirring occasionally. In each case, the meat came out salivatingly fork-tender, and the sauce was delectable! I felt like a real cook for the first time in my 60 years! Now the details.
The first dish I made was Alton Brown's pepper pork chops: [...]. As I said above, I started out with cooking on high for 2 hours, instead of the one hour I think the recipe calls for, then cooked on low for 3 more hours. Incomparable results!
The second dish was Anthony Bourdain's beef burgundy (boeuf bourgignon) recipe--not the complicated one from his "Les Halles" cookbook, but the super-simple one shown on his recent "Cooking Techniques" show on the "No Reservations" series. You can often view this on YouTube (the recipe is spread out among 5 segments of the episode), but periodically, I notice it seems to get yanked for copyright reasons, I guess, and I can't seem to find it on the Website for Bourdain's show. But it's simple: the cheapest cut of meat--I used stewing beef. Brown it in a saute skillet in some extra-virgin olive oil 'til it's good and brown (not grey) in small batches--don't crowd the pan and don't add more meat 'til each batch is done--stabilizes the heat of the pan. Set aside the meat, or put it in the unheated crockpot crockery insert. Saute chopped onions in the browns for a few minutes in the skillet. Add burgundy wine (the cheaper the better--we used Carlo Rossi) to the saute pan and spatula up all the browns along with the onions. With your browned meat in the crockpot, pour the deglazed wine and onions from the saute pan over the meat. Add enough additional burgundy wine to cover the meat and then a little. Cook on high for 2 hours; low for 3 hours after that (Bourdain's recipe calls for peeled, sliced carrots--I added them when changing to the low setting). Get ready to be blissed out by your dinner!
I brought the beef burgundy to our neighborhood potluck the other night, and they slurped it up so fast that lamentably, we had no left-overs to bring home and savor all over again!
Anyhow, no matter what the recipes recommend, for starters, I think I'm going to stick with to the forumula of cooking the first 2 hours on high/and whatever remaining hours the recipe calls for on low for whatever I cook--it seems to have worked so well with this particular slow-cooker--especially, the fork-tender results we love so well with the meat! Anyway, we'll see how that works for other recipes. Yum!
My husband and I are ecstatically happy with this slow-cooker! The food doesn't stick to the crockery insert, so it cleans up super-easily (in fact, you can put the crockery cooking insert and the glass lid--NOT the stainless steel cooking shell, mind you--in the dishwasher). And, I'm so glad that, not being much of a cook, I can finally make delicious dishes that both of us just absolutely savor!
on July 14, 2010
Love this slow cooker. After an extensive search for the best slow cooker, either by reviews or actual trials with several different brands, I finally found what I was looking for in a slow cooker. It is fabulous! The food does not burn, it is so easy to use, just set it and forget it. The first thing I made was a pot roast and the meat was so tender, perfection. It also looks great, no need to hide it. It is a great size for our family, not too large and not too small. I like the fact that the cord is not so long that it gets twisted and tangled up. In my opinion, the perfect slow cooker.
on April 25, 2010
This slow cooker is solid and dependable. It is easy to program and everything that I've made has come out perfectly cooked and delicious. It's heavy and not flimsy in any way and because of the design is easy to store in a cupboard. I also purchsed three slow cooker recipe books from Amazon as well and was very happy with two of them. If you're looking for a solid slow cooker, easy to program and nice looking ---- this is an excellent choice.
on July 26, 2010
I got this slow cooker to use in an apartment which has limited counter space. It can cook a 2 pound pork sirloin in 7 hours on high and turn it into delicious slow cooked pork.
I like the size, it can cook 8-10 servings of meat, soup, stew, chili. Cleaning the pot is not problematic.
It does seem to take a bit longer to cook meat (on high) than my other larger slow cooker, but the convenience of the shape does make the longer cook time a negative. I think the best selling feature is the shape, size, and manageability of this product.
on October 24, 2010
Looks great, fits everything, easy to clean, and saves space on the counter top.
I rate this slow cooker 5 stars but Amazon's packaging of this zero. That's a complaint for another form.
I have used this slow cooker to experiment with cooking. I've converted some recipes successfully and unsuccessfully. Usually the unsuccessful ones are extremely frustrating because in addition to having something inedible, the cleanup is usually terrible, but not with this cooker. My last slow cooker, a Rival, burned everything even on warm -- hard to clean. Delonghi's setting is perfect, no burnt mess.
Handles on the side of the unit do get hot but in warm setting they're fine.
I've got about three feet of counter top prep space but the size of this cooker is compact enough that I leave it out on the counter.
Love the count down timer. The description of this product is misleading when it says "programmable". You can't program start times...think of "programmable" like an egg timer.
Back to cleanup -- I did end up with some stains on the insert but 1 part white vinegar, 3 parts water, set to 2 hours on high did the trick.