Thursday, January 12, 2012


Just before Christmas, in the middle of my quest for the perfect gifts, I visited my local Canadian Tire store. After I quickly located the sought-after camo duffel bag, I decided to cruise the aisles for a couple of minutes and see if there was any inspiration to be found for the last few people on my list. It was during this wander that I happened up the pallet of 16Qt Electric Roasters - on clearance for only $39.99 each.

My Auntie Marg has been using one of these appliances for years, as a 2nd oven to cook a ham or roast whenever she hosts large family gatherings, so I had seen them before. But what I had never considered was that I might find one so cheaply, and just by accident. Since Christmas is the worst time of year to be buying unnecessary stuff, I hymned and hawed, and roamed around the store trying to convince myself that I shouldn't buy them. The silent conversation went something likes this: they might be perfect for dyeing....I don't really need them.....that's a really great price...they will take lots of room to store.....there won't be any left if I wait....this might solve the problem of the fuse blowing when all of my stovetop is on max for hours.....16 quarts is a lot of liquid....I can always bring them back if I change my many dye-pots does one girl need?....

Fast forward to the checkout --> I ended up leaving the store with two that day. When I got back to work I found them online for $180 each, and decided that if they worked half as well as I hoped they might, that I was going to want more -- and I definitely wasn't going to want to fork over full price. I took one out of the box when I got home and was thrilled to discover that there's a removable roasting pan insert, which will make filling and emptying a breeze. Then I called my mum to share my excitement, and together we convinced ourselves that if 2 were good, more would be better. And the next day I returned.....and now I have four.

So far I've only used one (the other 3 are still in there boxes, just in case I get a rude surprise).....and so far I'm loving it. Yes, it took some time to get up to temperature (especially since I had it quite full of water and wool), but I already think my days of absentmindedly boiling are long gone. I will soon give them a proper workout, and experiment with them during a major dyeing production.....and will report back on how it goes.

With the way that I dye, I really like a fast-absorption of the colours. Since I dye so many pieces of wool in one session I will have to wait and see whether it make more sense for me to use pots on the stovetop for the original colouring, and then fill up the roasters with the families of colour to simmer off.....or if the roasters are up for the complete circuit.

As I said, I'll keep you posted....but in the meantime, if you want to try to get your hands on one of these seemingly ginormous crock pots (minus the crock), you'd better visit CT soon -- the last time I was in the Huntsville store, they only had a handful left.

P.S. I would love to hear from you if you've tried using an Electric Roaster Oven before -- both if you thought they were awesome, or if they totally sucked. Please share....thanks!