Top positive review
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Great kitchen multi-tasker
on January 3, 2007
The Presto Slow Cook'n More Multi-Cooker is vastly more useful than most countertop kitchen appliances. The temperature control is very sensitive and wide-ranging (although inadequately marked), allowing you to use the cooker for applications not envisioned by Presto -- you can , for example, throw a cheap roast in the pot, brown the exterior at 375F, and then add broth/seasonings and braise the roast at 180F for 12-24 hours, yielding a tender, flavorful and juicy pot-roast without tying up the oven. You can effectively do true barbecue on your countertop -- long, slow cooking at around 180F. Just put some sort of small trivet or rack on the bottom of the cooker to keep the meat off of the pot bottom, and turn the meat a few times.
You can half fill the pot with salted water, bring it rapidly to a boil, and then put dry pasta in the fryer-basket and drop it in.
It ought to be able to pop popcorn -- haven't tried that one yet.
Because of the sensitive temperature control, you can create a water bath at nearly any useful temperature -- you should be able to use this device as an immersion yogurt-maker, or a Sous vide cooker (cooking vacuum-sealed food packets in a temperature controlled water bath -- a kind of dry-poaching)
And, of course it slow-cooks with the included crock liner, and deep fries with the included fry-basket. As a fryer it allows higher frying temps than many of the "consumer" countertop fryers, but is of course far less idiot-proof.
As a slow-cooker it is better than most, because you can actually set the temperature rather than using unregulated "low-high" switch settings that are never exactly correct, and often grievously wrong. Most inexpensive slow-cookers have no thermostats, and instead use heating coils whose temperature is regulated by your line voltage. This isn't reliable, and to be "safe" the manufacturers have cranked up the design operating temperatures so far that most slow-cookers can't actually slow-cook any more. The Presto can actually slow-cook. Of course, if you are careless or ignorant you can also produce a nice batch of totally unsafe food by setting the thermostat _too_ low.
While a great kitchen addition or dorm-room do-it-all, the Presto Cook'n More is also a serious tool for the knowledgeable home chef on a budget. If you don't really know what you are doing, just follow the Presto manual. If you do know what you are doing, be inventive.