Two from Morphy Richards - Intellichef and Intellisteam
The IntelliChef is billed as "A versatile 9 in 1multi cooker". I have put it through its paces, along with its partner, the IntelliSteam. We recently moved into a new home with no conventional cooker or microwave for a couple of months. Boy were we glad to have the Intellichef and Intellisteam to help us through. Between these two machines and a small George Foreman grill, we were able to make a wide range of meals for a family of 4.
Although it may look like a slow-cooker the IntelliChef is much more. It's described as the Swiss Army Knife of slow cookers and versatile it is. You can cook a great curry, re-heat leftovers, shallow fry, slow cook, boil or even bake a cake. The single large, thickly non-stick coated metal cooking bowl has a capacity of four litres which is enough to cook a tasty one-pot meal or main course for a family; which we often did.
Unlike slowcookers, the IntelliChef has a wider range of temperature settings. This proves useful as meat and vegetables can be fried or sealed before the heat is reduced to a gentle slow-cook or stew setting to simmer the dish, rather like using a pan and hob. We found that it took a little experimentation to suss out exactly which settings worked the best for getting just the right heat level for simmering particular foods. The IntelliChef would work better if the temperature control was a little more variable to allow subtle adjustments whilst cooking. Sometimes it felt like the choices available were "boil it to bits" or "very slow cook" with little in between.
This unit has a fixed lid with moisture trap - quite like that which you might expect to see on a modern deep fat fryer. This gives the IntelliChef a smooth and rounded profile. I thought it looked like the head of a rather benevolent android with its deliberately face-like control layout and little smile detail.
The cooking pot is removable for washing, as you would expect. The rest of the unit is easy to clean too.
The Intellichef is on the high side of expensive, but if you have a lack of space and want a versatile unit it could just offer you what you need. The Intellichef is currently available for £124.99 from Amazon.
One of the Intelli range partners to the IntelliChef is the IntelliSteam Food Steamer. A square base measuring around 70 cm^2 holds enough water to power the three independent steaming containers for 60 mins on full blast. One large chamber is ideal for rice or pasta whilst the two half-sized ones
can deal with vegetables or proteins. Any one of the three cooking areas can be used alone or it is possible to set separate steaming times for them so that all components of a meal will be ready at the same time. A truly complete steamer with advanced features. Both attractive and easy to use, it certainly produces delicious rice and crunchy veg. We noticed that the design and colour schemes of the 'Chef and 'Steam were not very well harmonised. It may be that Morphy Richards are offering a choice of old-school cream or modern silver finishes and we got one of each!
The Intellisteam is currently available for a reasonable £65.38 from Amazon.
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