Showing posts with label slow cooker. Show all posts
Showing posts with label slow cooker. Show all posts

Friday, November 18, 2011

Five Reasons You Should Make Crock Pot Stuffing This Year

One year ago next week, I had a guest post on Wonderland Kitchen, which is now Brighton Park - aka Katie's Place.

I shared one of my favorite holiday recipes - Crock Pot Stuffing.

It's now time to revive that GLORIOUS recipe just in time for what is possibly my favorite holiday!

Five Reasons that Crock Pot Stuffing is the BEST way to cook stuffing for Thanksgiving.!
5. No need to deal with the nasty germs that baking your stuffing in a bird engenders.
4. It's easy to please vegetarian guests (swap the chicken stock for vegetable stock).
3. Small kitchen? Single oven? Small oven? Not a problem. Plug and play in a different room.
2. Spend time focusing on your turkey, your guests, or your table settings rather than slaving over a stove.
1. It's easy to make ahead and bring with you to a meal at someone else's home!

Additionally, there's one more reason that goes almost unspoken when discussing Thanksgiving... LEFTOVERS!

Recipe below:

Crock Pot Stuffing
12 cups lightly toasted bread, cubed (I used stale bread)
1 onion, chopped
3 large stalks celery, thinly sliced
1 apple, peeled and diced
1/4 cup butter
1 tablespoons ground thyme
2 teaspoons ground oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 1/2 cups chicken stock (if making a vegetarian-friendly dish, substitute vegetable stock)

Place bread crumbs in a 6 quart crock pot. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter, and saute the onion, celery and apple until soft. Stir in the spices and then toss over the bread cubes. Stir together well. Pour chicken stock over the mixture and coat evenly. Cook on high for one hour then reduce to low and cook another two to three hours, stirring each hour.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Seven-Chile Texas Chili

Chocolate and beer and chiles, oh my!

Who wouldn't fall in love?

As I thumbed through The Homesick Texan Cookbook, I marked recipe pages with my fingers that I was in love with and wanted to try. Soon I was out of fingers.

The world for a sticky note!

I had to start narrowing down my pick for Week 3 of the Cookbook Spotlight and Cookoff. Would it be the Radish and Cabbage Slaw? The Seven-Chile Texas Chili? The Queso Cookies? Tortilla Soup?

I kept coming back to the Seven-Chile Texas Chili.

Fall is definitely arriving here in Alaska; leaves are changing, crabapples beg picking, and the night air is bone-chilling cool, even when the days have a little warmth to them. To top it off, K has been moose hunting (and I sure hope I get to blog about moose recipes soon), and when he's home, I would sure love to have a hearty meal to warm him up.

Did I mention I kept coming back to the Seven-Chile Texas Chili? The only potential problem I faced was that it takes about half a day to make, which meant that I couldn't cook it while I was at work, so the One Hour Texas Chili was tempting. I persevered and opted to go with the whole shebang. I mean, why not?

I ran into a few snags when I couldn't find some of the chiles, but life is about improvisation and I really wanted to try this tasty treat. You'll find my substitutions below, and I think you'll love this dish too.

Seven-Chile Texas Chili
adapted from The Homesick Texan Cookbook, page 139

6 dried ancho chiles (I substituted 5 chipotles in adobo, and adobo sauce)
2 dried pasilla chiles
2 dried guajilla chiles (I substituted 1 dried chile de arbol)
2 dried chipotle chiles (I used 2 chiles in adobo)
4 dried chiles de arbol
4 pieces of bacon
4 pounds chuck roas, cut into 1/4" cubes
1 large onion, diced
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup brewed coffee
1 bottle beer (I used 16 oz of K's Oatmeal Stout homebrew)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground clove (I used 3 small whole cloves)
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon grated Mexican hot chocolate (I used 1 teaspoon granular Mexican hot chocolate)
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste (I used sea salt)
4 dried pequin chiles (I substituted with a poblano chile)
2 tablespoons masa harina
Ground cheddar and chopped onions for serving

Remove the seeds and stems from the dried chiles and toast the dried peppers for 10 seconds on each side in a dry skillet. Cover with water and leave heat on until the water starts to boil. Then remove the heat and let soak for 30 minutes.

Cook the bacon in a deep skillet or dutch oven over medium heat until done. Remove from the pan to a plate covered with a paper towel. Brown the cubed beef in the bacon grease and remove from the pot (this may need to be done in batches). In the same pot, cook the onions until translucent (about 5 minutes), then add the garlic for another 30 seconds or so. Add the beef back in.

Here, because I did have to leave the house to accomplish a few things, I transferred everything to my 6 quart slow cooker and turned to high.

Add all other ingredients except for the masa harina and the cheddar and onion garnish. While waiting for the chili to boil, combine all peppers in a food processor with a cup of water and process until a thick paste. Add to the chili.

The original recipe calls for turning the heat to low when the chili begins to boil, and simmer uncovered for 5 hours. Because of my slow cooker alteration, I covered the chili during its first 3 hours of simmering, and checked periodically, adding water and adjusting spices as needed.

After five hours, scoop out 1/4 cup of broth and mix with the masa harina; pour the mixture back into the pot and stuir until thickened. Simmer another 30 minutes. When done, serve with the cheddar and onion garnish.


This is some tasty chili, with a perfect bite!

This post is part of The Homesick Texan Cookbook Spotlight and Cook-Off sponsored by Hyperion and hosted at girlichef.

Here are the recipes that my fellow cooking adventurers tried this week:

girlichef: Pasilla Garlic Shrimp + Fried Catfish & Hushpuppies
Kahakai Kitchen: Green Chile Chowder
EKat's Kitchen: Seven-Chile Texas Chili
Stirring the Pot: Mexican Fried Potatoes + Carnitas, Jalapeño Pinto Beans, & Red Chile Rice + Breakfast Tacos & Refried Beans + Chorizo Stuffed Jalapeños + Chipotle Pimento Cheese
Sweet Life: Fried Shrimp
Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Pasilla Garlic Shrimp  + Tomatillo Cheese Grits
Mangoes and Chutney: Cheese Enchiladas w/ Chile con Carne
Foodness Gracious: Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas
Cooking for My Peace of Mind: Pan de Campo
Nutmeg Nanny: Sweet Potato and Fig Muffins  
Fudge Ripple: Spinach and Mushroom Enchiladas
Rook no. 17: Pumpkin Empanadas
Year on the Grill (posting at other blog): Corn Chowder w/ Roasted Jalapeños & Bacon
Life in the Slow Lane at Squirrel Head Manor: Tomato Cobbler
Creative Kitchen: Migas
Anchovies and Butter: Smoky Deviled Eggs
A Platter of Figs: Mexican Chocolate Chewies  
Bo's Bowl: Carne Guisada   

Friday, November 19, 2010

Guest Post @ Wonderland Kitchen (Crockpot Stuffing)

Hello to all of you! I'm excited to be sharing today's post via Wonderland Kitchen!!

Wonderland Kitchen kettle

I first met Katie through Friday Potluck and am very excited to be sharing my Crock Pot Stuffing with her readers.  Katie regularly cooks for 6-9 people on any given day, and is therefore my hero!!! We've become pals, and I find her to be very inspiring! While you're at Katie's place, check out her homeschooling blog too!

Thanks pals!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Slow Cooker Applesauce

As we in the US prepare for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, I certainly hope that I'm not the only one still thinking -- OOOOOH I could make that too!! This year it's just going to be hubby and I, and it will be my first Thanksgiving to cook my very own dinner — I cannot wait! :)

K & I scored a 15 pound bird for $6. at Safeway earlier this month and have been busy planning how to cook it and all of the sides... 15 pounds of turkey. Yikes! We're planning to take a big giant plate of holiday fixins to the soldiers in K's company who have to work that day... but we're still going to have lots of extras. MMMM leftovers!!!

Before I go into the details of my crock pot apple sauce, I want to remind you to enter my CSN giveaway! Win $35. to spend at CSN Stores!!! :)

But, this post is on a side or a healthier dessert you can easily make. It's easy, and you can let it cook away all day in the crock pot while your oven's tied up! It makes your house smell AAAAAHHHHmazing too.

This recipe, you may or may not remember, was one of my featured posts in Saturday Sevens on October 16. I was impressed with Heather Lynne's Crock-Pot Applesauce and decided that I must try it for myself.

I absolutely adore this recipe... and that I can leave it simmering all day, giving the house a wonderful apple-cinnamon scent. When we walked back into the house, I couldn't believe the fantastic aromas emanating from the slow cooker.

I made one and a half of Heather Lynne's recipe, but otherwise didn't make significant changes to it.

Add caption

I used three apple varieties -- granny smith, red delicious, and a beautiful red/gold apple whose name I cannot remember.

Aren't they pretty?

I do not have an apple peeler or corer, and cored and peeled by hand. If you are like me and are a "traditionalist" either by intent or accident, I implore you to remember that knives go very easily through apples whose skins have been removed. Though no blood was drawn, I certainly felt the sharp point of the knife a few times.

I'm not very good at this whole peeling thing. There were lots of short and stubby peels.

These were my three success stories. Ok, two and a half success stories. But aren't the top two beautiful?

Slow Cooker Applesauce

9 large apples, skinned, cored, and cut into 8 pieces
2 1/2 lemons, juiced
1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
1.5 teaspoons vanilla
4.5 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/3 cup water

Mix all ingredients together in a four quart slow cooker. Stir together. Cook on low for 4-6 hours.

After you return home your 4-6 hours are up, this is what you'll see. Mash together (should be a cinch) into a lovely red sauce. Add another tablespoon of brown sugar and a dash of cinnamon, stir together and cook for another 20 minutes or so.

Serve. I garnished with apple slices... thought it might be over doing it but, it turned out perfectly!!  A definite keeper!

I'm linking this up to my own 

Saturday's Party @ Recipes of a Cheapskate
Potluck Sunday @ Mommy's Kitchen

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Savory Harvest Veggie Stoup - Slow Cooker Recipe

This has just been one of those weeks. Craving soups, pastas, and all those delicious foods that scream comfort and cooler weather. It was cooler, but it's back in the 70s here in Southern Colorado. No matter.
I've been planning to make this soup, which I've dubbed "Nummy Stew," for weeks now, and to share with the Sister Saturday Soup Exchange at Southern in My Heart and Gourmet Meals for Less today.

This is one of my favorite recipes, and I don't make it that often, though now I've learned more about what my slow cooker can do, it may be a more common dish at our house!

Savory Harvest Veggie Stoup

3-4 medium to large potatoes, cubed
1 apple, cubed
3 large carrots, chopped
3 large stalks celery, chopped
2 Roma tomatoes, chopped 
1 cup green beans
1 medium zucchini, sliced
3-4 cloves garlic, diced
2 quarts chicken broth
1 can tomato paste 
1 tbsp dried basil
1 tbsp dried cilantro (ground coriander is okay too)
1 tsp celery salt
1 tsp curry powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic salt 
8 oz pasta (more is fine)
Place all veggies in a 6 quart slow cooker. Pour the broth over the veggies; if the broth doesn't cover the veggies, add more. Stir in tomato paste -- it's okay if it doesn't mix well yet; it will mix in as the soup cooks. Stir in the spices and the pasta. Turn the slow cooker on high for 3-4 hours, or on low for 6-8.

Note - if you wish your noodles to be less falling apart, add them about 30-45 minutes prior  to serving.

Ladle into bowls and serve with bread.

Easy Peasy... Enjoy!!

As mentioned, I'm linking this with the Sister Saturday Soup Exchange (see button below).
I'm also pleased to finally have a soup to bring to Deb @ Kahakai Kitchen's Souper Sundays.
And, I'm also linking this up to My Meatless Mondays at My Sweet and Savory

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Slow Cooker Pot Roast Stew & Friday Potluck #6

I love pot roast. I didn't know that I loved it until last year when I had some in an au jus gravy at a friend's house. Yummy pot roast! My friend Heather taught me just how easy it can be to cook pot roast, and she also gave me an undying love for slow cookers.

I've since tried a few different recipes for a slow cooker pot roast stew, and this is the latest, and greatest. Though I'm not a big fan of using pre-made sauce packets because of the extra salts and preservatives, I do need to use up what I have, and they make it so gosh-darn easy.

So after a long day at work and delivering dinner to K who was working a 24-hour shift, I got home exhausted at 9:30 and realized I STILL had to get the roast ready for cooking the next day. Fortunately, I'd remembered to take the roast from the freezer the evening prior and it was all thawed. About 15 minutes later I was in bed and well on my way to snoozing.

Have I mentioned that I LOVE my slow cooker. Thank you to K's mom, she's a really awesome mother-in-law (are you reading, K's Mom?) who gave me the slow cooker for Christmas last year. It's from Hamilton Beach and has not one, not two, but three bowls of different sizes to choose from.

I know you're itching to see all the yummy ingredients in this recipe, so without further ado, I give you (in a deep announcer voice)

(with veggies and a red wine beef broth)

1 McCormick Seasoning slow cooker pot roast packet with the amount of water it calls for
32 oz low-sodium beef broth
1/2 cup red wine (or more if you like)
3 large carrots, sliced
6-8 small red potatoes, cubed
3 large celery stalks, sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon celery salt
1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons gumbo file' powder (a very random, hmmm, this will be good, last minute addition)
1 4lb roast, with as much fat trimmed as possible

Place liquids and spices in a 6 quart slow cooker. Mix together well. Add the roast, followed by the veggies, so that the veggies are stacked around the roast. The roast and veggies should be mostly covered by the liquids. If not, add more liquid of your choosing; I will almost always choose wine because I like it a lot it adds such great flavor to the red meat. 

Set the slow cooker on low and cook for 8-9 hours (or on high for 4-5). If like me, you set the slow cooker in the morning before you leave work and get home more than 9 hours later, that's fine. The longer the meat cooks and simmers in the broth, the more tender it will be. Meat should fall apart easily.
Serve in bowls so that each bowl receives a few chunks of meat and lots of broth and veggies. I completely forgot to make biscuits and K and I were starving so we used some partially stale kaiser rolls, which totally did the trick. BUT, I recommend making fresh biscuits to serve with and soak up the broth, as they seem to really enhance the flavor.


Also, as it's already almost Friday again, so you know what that means!

Friday Potluck

grab the code!

The rules are so simple, it's almost like there are no rules --
  1. Your blog post must be published before you link up; and you must link to that post (not your general blog address).
  2. In your post, use either a link or the code above to link up to Friday Potluck.
  3. Have fun! Check out some of your fellow potluckers' entries; maybe you'll find some new inspiration or make a new friend or two!

And, finally, please drop me a comment to let me know that you've posted, and tell me what you think!

I'm also linking this up to the following blog parties
The Grocery Cart Challenge Recipe Exchange @ The Grocery Cart Challenge, Foodie Friday @ Designs By Gollum, Inspiration Friday @ Southern In My Heart, Friday Favorites @ Simply Sweet Home, Family Food Fridays @ Get Healthy Cheap, Food Trip Friday, Family Friendly Friday @ Mommie Cooks

This linky list is now closed.


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