WELCOME

Welcome to this slow cooker/crockpot blog. I believe slow cookers are the best thing to happen to modern day cooks. I used mine often when I worked outside the home and continue to do so even in retirement. It is so nice to put food on and forget about it. Slow cookers also allow us to cook many things we would normally have to use the oven for; what a relief in hot Texas weather! Some of these recipes are mine, many are ones I have collected over the years.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

SPARERIBS & SAUERKRAUT

3 - 4 lbs lean pork spareribs, cut into serving-size pieces
salt to your taste
pepper to your taste
2 cans sauerkraut
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 apple, quartered, cored, sliced
1 tsp caraway seeds
1 cup water
1 tsp salt, optional

Sprinkle the salt and pepper to taste on the spareribs and brown ribs in a heavy skillet or the broiler.  Layer half of each of the following; ribs, sauerkraut, onion, and apple.  Repeat with the remaining half.
Add the caraway seeds to the water with additional salt, if using, and pour over the layers.  Cover and cook on low setting for 6 to 8 hours or on high for about 4 hours.


Monday, November 21, 2011

BEAN AND SALSA TURKEY CHILI

1 tbsp canola oil
1/2 lb ground turkey*
1 can (28-oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 jar (16-oz) chunky salsa
1 can (15-oz) black beans
1 can (15-oz) kidney beans
1 can (15-oz) chili beans
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
shredded cheddar cheese for topping

Heat canola oil in a medium skillet, add turkey and cook over medium-high heat until no longer pink.  This will probably take about 10 minutes.  Stir occasionally during the cooking process.

Transfer the turkey to a crockpot or slow cooker and add the tomatoes, salsa, black beans, kidney beans, chili beans, chili powder, and cumin.  Stir to blend well.

Place lid on cooker and cook on high setting 3 to 4 hours or on low setting approximately 6 hours.

To serve, ladle into individual bowls and top with cheddar cheese as desired.

*Be aware if buying the ground turkey (or chicken).  Read the label and be sure mixture does not contain skin which really ups the fat in the meat.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

GROUND BEEF-VEGGIE CASSEROLE

1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef, lightly browned and drained
2 large potatoes, sliced
3 carrots, sliced
1 pkg (10-oz) frozen peas, partially thawed
3 medium onions, sliced
2 stalks of celery sliced
1 can (approx 10-oz) tomato soup
1 soup can of water
Salt
Pepper

In the crockpot or slow cooker layer the potatoes, carrots, peas, onions and celery, in that order.  Lightly season each layer with salt and pepper as desired.  Layer the browned beef over the celery.  In a bowl, mix the soup and water together with a whisk until smooth.  Pour the soup mixture over the ground beef.  Place the lid on the cooker and cook on low setting 6 to 8 hours or on the high setting 3 to 4 hours.  Stir occasionally.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

TASTY HOT MULLED CIDER

1/2 gallon apple cider
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp balsamic or cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cinnamon stick
6 whole cloves

Combine all the ingredients in your crockpot or slowcooker.  Cover and set on low.  Cook 5 to 6 hours.  Discard cinnamon stick and cloves.  Serve in hot mugs.

Yield: 16 servings

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

CHEESY CROCKPOT POTATOES

1 small carton sour cream
2 cans Cheddar cheese soup
1 tsp dried onion flakes
1 stick unsalted butter
8 medium potatoes, parboiled until just tender

Drain the potatoes and place in crockpot (or slow cooker).

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium low heat.  Stir the sour cream and the cheese soup, undiluted, into the butter until well blended.  Pour cheese mixture over the potatoes, cover, and cook on low for at least an hour.  Yummy!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

SPICY BRISKET

2 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 lbs beef brisket, trimmed
3 tsp canola oil
2 large onions, thinly sliced
1 cup catsup
1/2 cup bottled chili sauce
1/4 cup molasses*
2 tbsp strong brewed coffee
1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce

Spray a broiler pan with nonstick cooking spray and preheat broiler.

In a cup, mix the chili powder, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Rub this mix onto the brisket and place brisket on the broiler rack.  Drizzle 1 tablespoon of the canola oil over the top of the brisket.  Broil 5-inches from the heat for about 5 minutes per side to brown.

While brisket is browning, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of canola oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, just until golden.  Stir in the catsup, chili sauce, molasses, coffee, and hot pepper sauce.

Spread half of the sauce over the bottom of the cooker; top sauce with the brisket.  Top brisket with the remaining half of the sauce.  Cover cooker and cook on low setting for around 8 hours or until meat is tender.

To serve, transfer the brisket to a cutting board and cut across the grain into about 18 slices.  Skim the fat from the sauce and serve with the brisket.

Yield: 6 servings

*You may substitute brown sugar if you do not have molasses.
This brisket makes yummy sandwiches.  May I suggest whole-wheat buns?
Note: File Photo

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

REHEATING LEFTOVERS IN A CROCKPOT OR SLOW COOKER

Slow cookers/crockpots can keep food warm up to 2 hours after turning off.  But if you are planning to reheat food that has been refrigerated, these cookers are not recommended.  This is a safety issue as it takes the cookers too long to reach a safe temperature.  Reheat on stovetop or in microwave and then transfer to the cooker to keep if desired.