Monday, August 31, 2009

Slow-Cooking For Good Food, Fast

Most of us are over scheduled and something has to give. Unfortunately, all to often, that something is a nice meal as we rely on drive thru, take out and microwave meals.

Fortunately, it doesn't have to be that way.

More than likely you have a slow cooker somewhere stuck way back in a cupboard, maybe still in the box.

At one time, it's true, most food that came out of the crock pot tasted the same but years of experimenting and perfecting the recipes has changed that.

Less than 15 minutes in the morning and my hints and you can come home to a delicious home cooked meal. At most add a salad or bread and dinner is served.

Here are some things I do to make it even quicker and easier.

  • Buy thin skinned potatoes that you don't need to peel- red, new, etc...

  • I use the frozen pearl onions instead of chopping onions myself- just dump them in frozen.

  • Baby carrots are peeled and washed and can often be found for a dollar a pound or less.

  • I keep browned ground beef or turkey in the freezer and when we need to eat on the run just dump in the seasonings in the am for taco meat, sloppy joes, etc that are good to eat in shifts.

  • Before freezing chicken, pork or beef cubes have it cut in the size you need for specific recipes so you can again just dump and add your other ingredients (can use frozen if it is b/s in bite sized pieces).

  • cream of soups make great gravies- and if you add a pkt of onion soup mix it gives a delightful flavor for pot roasts etc.

  • tapioca pearls will thicken up a stew nicely and you don't have to do anything but take the lid off and stir then spoon it out when you are ready to eat.

Here is a recipe that makes 2 completely different meals.

Delicious pork roast with fall veggies

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
6-8 new potatoes
1/2 to 1 bag frozen pearl onions
1 bag baby carrots
2 apples, peeled and sliced
1/2 to 1 cup apple cider or apple juice
1 large pork roast- double whatever you usually use
salt, pepper, garlic powder and rosemary to taste

Place all vegs in the bottom of the crock pot or slow cooker, mix them up. Put pork roast on top and season. Pour cider or juice over all. Cover and cook on low 8 hours.

With the second half of the roast make pulled pork- using 2 forks, shred the meat and put back in the crock pot with the juices and enough of your fave bbq sauce to make a wet sauce.

Heat for 30 minutes to an hour while you eat and get the kitchen cleaned up then put in fridge and whenever you want you have some seriously delicious bbq sandwiches best served on a sturdy roll with coleslaw.


Posted by Sherry of Loon-atics In The Kitchen

Featured Weekly on Pink Lemonade Online Magazine

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