Today I’ve got a fun review and giveaway for you all! It’s the Ninja Cooking System:
Yup, I know. It sort of looks like a basic slow cooker–but it’s not. Sure, the Ninja Cooking System is a slow cooker (and a programmable one at that). What makes it different is that it also has both a “stovetop” option and a “Steam Baking” option!
Those additional options interested me and were the main reason I accepted Ninja’s offer of both a unit to review and one to give away. You see a lot of slow cooker recipes call for browning the meat or caramelizing the onions before putting everything in the cooker. That means you either have to pull out another pot and sear things on the stovetop, or you skip that step and loose some texture and flavor in the dish. The idea of being able to use what is essentially an “electric frying pan” option and then just switch the whole thing over to slow cooker mode. . . well, that seems a whole lot easier!
The baking/steam baking option also was intriguing. Sometimes it just seems like such a waste to heat up the whole oven for something small–and this summer I barely used the oven at all because of our unseasonable heat. If I could stick the Ninja Cooking System out in the barn or on the back deck to bake a pan of brownies or a cake without heating up the whole kitchen–well that would be very useful indeed!
In order to test the unit I decided to make some Irish Stew. Stew is just one of those meals where the meat is so much more appealing (and the broth more tasty) if you sear the meat. I took a look in the little cookbook that came with the cooking system and saw that they had beef stew–so I knew that my Irish Stew recipe should work just fine.
The liner or pan for the cooker itself is a coated metal, not crockery like your traditional slow cooker. It comes with a special baking pan and a steaming rack–but I didn’t need either of those for my beef stew:
I like the fact that this unit serves multiple functions and cuts down on the number of dishes needed. I especially can see this being useful when the family goes camping. No, really! We RV camp and typically do our cooking outside of the camper out on the picnic table. This would be handy for everything from scrambling eggs to cooking a dish like this stew while we were off having fun for the day (it’s nice to come back to the campsite and have dinner ready–mom doesn’t really get a break when you are camping, she still has to cook!). My good friend who does tent camping said that many of the sites they use do have electric hook up–and she could see getting dinner together in the Ninja system then tucking it into the front of her husband’s truck with the extension cord running out of a window and over to the power hookup.
All in all it’s an interesting appliance that I’m glad to add to my cooking collection!
Approximate Retail Price: $159
Available: September 2012
Web Site: www.ninjacookingsystem.com
Now for the fun part-the giveaway!
This giveaway runs from today-Thursday October 25th, 2012 through midnight EST Wednesday October 31st, 2012.
To enter, just leave a comment telling me which recipe or type of recipe you are most interested in trying in the Ninja Cooking System
Do you want some extra entries? You can do each of the below once-remember, you have to come back here and leave a separate comment for each action to have it count.
Extra Entry One: Subscribe to Frugal Upstate (or let me know if you already have). Come back and comment telling me.
Extra Entry Two: Follow me, Jenn Fowler, on twitter. Come back and comment telling me.
Extra Entry Three: Post on facebook about this giveaway using the link: http://www.frugalupstate.com/?p=11439 Come back and comment telling me.
Extra Entry Four: Follow me on Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/jennfowler/ Come back and comment telling me.
Good luck! You can also “like” the Kitchen Ninja Facebook page (keep your eye on them for other giveaways!) or follow them on Twitter. And of course I’d always love you to join in the great conversations over on the Frugal Upstate Facebook Page as well!
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. Ninja has provided me with the Ninja Cooking System for Review. My participation is voluntary and opinions, as always are my own.