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Tag Archives: crock pot

I’m Such a BRAT!

I was going to call this a Tasty Tuesday post, but in fact I have not yet tasted the treat that is currently cooking in the crock pot.  I know, some bloggers would make their blog post later or tomorrow, but we all know that is not how I roll.  I make blog posts on the fly before going to rehearsal, and I go with what I got, even when I ain’t got nuthin’.

Be all that as it may, this afternoon I decided that I would go on a bland diet. Never mind why; nobody wants to hear about other people’s digestive issues.  I only bring it up because it is relevant to the post at hand.  Some may feel the bland diet is especially appropriate to me because of the acronym that helps us remember its elements: BRAT (you know who you are) (and I gotta say, right back atcha, for the most part) (but I digress).  BRAT, for the digestively blessed who have no need to know such a thing (digestively is not a word?  I’ll be damned!), BRAT stands for Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, Toast.  Pasta and potatoes can also form part of the diet, but there weren’t enough vowels to add two more P’s, so you just have to pretend they are included under Rice or Toast.

After work, I headed to the store to purchase Bananas, Rice, and Applesauce (I already had bread for the toast at home).  After some internal debate about brown vs. white rice (I like brown but wondered if it was bland enough for a BRAT like me) (I took a chance and got the brown) and a quick look around for a treat for Steven (I love my husband), I checked out and headed home.

And found out I had forgotten the applesauce.  Damn it!  When there are only four items on one’s diet, one does not like to miss one.  However, I have some apples I purchased recently at North Star Orchards in Westmoreland (thus adding a little local flair to my post).  I know one can make applesauce in the crock pot.  I looked for a recipe online.  I’ve had pretty good luck finding things online lately (knock wood).

The first recipe I came across was pretty simple:  apples, lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon, water.  They said Golden Delicious Apples and I have Macintosh, but I was undeterred.  Additionally, they said core and peel, and I left the peel on.  There are plenty of nutrients and fiber in the peel, you know.  Continuing to do my own thing, I cut the apples into smaller pieces than the quarters called for by the recipe. For one reason, since I was leaving the peel on, I thought it would be easier to eat.  Then I got tired of chopping apples and stopped at six.  I halved the other ingredients.  See, I can do the math.

The apples are in the crock pot, and the crock pot is on HIGH.  Yes, I remembered to plug it in (don’t laugh; we all forget such things on occasion).  It should be done after rehearsal.  Steven and I will have some for a treat before bed.  Maybe we should stop at the store on the way home from rehearsal and get some vanilla ice cream to  put on it while it’s still warm.  I can start my bland diet tomorrow.

 

Souper Sunday

Imagine my delight just now when I searched and found that I have not used “Souper Sunday” as a headline.  I don’t like to repeat headlines.  I know I predicted a Wrist to Forehead Sunday, but I think Sunday Supper post might be nice.  I guess technically it was lunch, but you know how I love alliteration.

I had planned to make soup earlier in the week.  I had a big piece of beef in the freezer (I don’t remember what the cut was; it was on sale and it looked good).  I thought I would cook it in the crock pot on Saturday, then make soup with the leftovers on Sunday.  I find it is a good idea for me to plan menus for the weekend, to lessen the temptation to send out for pizza or Chinese food.  I confess that it only lessens the temptation.  That little devil on my shoulder will whisper, “That meat will be perfectly good to cook on Monday!”  However, this weekend, the devil was silent and I crock potted the beef.

I put Worcestershire sauce garlic powder, minced onions, Salt-Free Essential Spice Blend (from the So Sweet Candy Cafe in Utica, NY), and a small can of mushrooms in the crock pot with the meat, plus a little water.  It cooked for maybe nine hours.  Yum!  Steven nicely put the leftovers away.

I started the soup around 12:30 today.  As usual, I crushed up some garlic and set the timer for 15 minutes so it could “breathe” (I put breathe in quotations, because garlic does not have lungs).  I chopped up an onion and put it in a pot.  Ooh, here’s where I changed things up:  I did NOT cook it in olive or canola oil as per my usual method.  I used red wine.  Yes, I cooked with wine and I actually put it in the food!  You see, I impulsively purchased a cheap bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon the other day at Ilion Wine and Spirits.

“If it’s not good to drink, I can always cook with it,”  I said, quoting a bit of wisdom given me by another wine aficionado.  Turns out it wasn’t so good to drink.

After things had cooked for some time, I added a can of diced tomatoes.  Then I chopped up a small eggplant I had purchased specifically for the soup.  I love eggplant.  This was when I realized I had picked too small of a pot.  Damn! I put everything in a bigger pot.  After letting the eggplant cook for a while, I put in the leftover drippings and chopped up the leftover beef.  Stirring everything up, I added parsley, more Salt-Free Essential and a little cumin.

It was quite a tasty soup, and there was a goodly amount left over.  Steven put it in the freezer, for future consumption.  Now how could I have a Wrist to Forehead Sunday after such a delicious meal?

 

Crock Pot Cooking with Steve

How about a cooking post on Tired Tuesday?  It involves a crock pot and my dear husband, Steven. Full disclosure: I have not eaten the meal in question yet, because I want to get my blog post done.  However, it smells pretty damn good, and I have no reason to think it will not taste good as well.

The dinner started yesterday, when Steven took some sausage out of the freezer.  He thought we had a jar of Paul Newman sauce in the pantry then remembered we ate it last week.  I had some peppers and onions in the refrigerator that I had been thinking, in a vague sort of way, of putting in the crock pot with some canned tomato sauce, which is practically always on hand.  So we ate leftovers yesterday and planned for the crock pot today.

I must confess, Steven was the main mover and shaker behind our creation.  Last night he said, “What can I do to get this crock pot thing going?  Cut up the sausage?”  It was in links.  I was at that point trying to get my blog post together, having already done a load of laundry, and feeling my usual Monday tiredness.  Steven pointed out that I get up really early in the morning with not a lot of time before leaving for work.  I knew I must bestir myself so, following his good example, I chopped up a half an onion (they were big onions) and two green peppers. I put them in a container in the refrigerator.

This morning, I was prepared to put the ingredients in the crock pot, but Steven graciously offered to do so.  I instructed him to put the onion and peppers on the bottom, then the sausage, then four cans of tomato sauce (they’re kind of small).  I explained how the crock pot must be filled to a certain amount in order to cook properly, and that vegetables cook best on the bottom or sides of the pot.  I am not an expert at crock pot cookery, but I have some experience.  I said eight or nine o’clock would be an OK time to turn it on.

When I talked to Steven during the day (I was at work; he had the day off), I told him not to stir it yet.  We stirred it when I got home.  Ooh, it was smelling good.   We took a teeny taste. I added a small can of tomato paste for thickening.  Steven sprinkled in some garlic powder, basil and oregano.  I turned the pot on high.

Now the water is on for the rotini, and I am very hungry.  If this is not the delicious meal I am expecting, I shall edit this post to say so.  But I don’t think I will have to.  Happy Tuesday, everyone.

 

Monday Menu Meanderings

I really, really want to finish my blog post before my dear husband Steven arrives home from work.  Alas, I did not write anything while at work today.  I worked on anacrostic puzzles in a puzzle book I really should have left at home.  In my defense, I LOVE anacrostic puzzles!  And doing puzzles is good for your brain.  Surely my brain needs all the help it can get.

The sad thing is, I’m really supposed to be figuring something out for dinner, not typing in a blog post.  I’m hungry.  Steven will be hungry. There is food in the house, but I fear it requires work.  Unless we just heat up the beef soup I made yesterday.  Ah, I know, a few words about the soup will serve for today’s blog post.

We recently purchased a lovely roast that was on sale.  I can’t remember what cut it was, but it was substantial.  It went into the freezer to  await cooking.  Then last Sunday (that is, a week ago yesterday), I discovered the few carrots I had left had gotten kind of… not crunchy.  I thought they were still good, they just didn’t look as if they would be good raw, which is pretty much the only way I like carrots.  However, one does what one must, in this case, cook the damn carrots.

A day or two later, I put the carrots in the crock pot with the beef, half an onion, Worcestershire sauce and water.  I had to add water, because the beef had not thawed in the refrigerator.  How delightful it was to arrive home that evening to the smell of roasting beef.  It made a fine supper.  I even ate some of the carrots.

Steven saved all the drippings, which were considerable due to the water I had added.  I said I would use it to make beef soup, which I did on Sunday. There really wasn’t much to that recipe.  I chopped two potatoes and put them on the boil.  Then I put the liquid, onions and carrots in a pot on the stove.  I chopped up a goodly amount of the beef to add.  When it was boiling, I added some frozen green beans for good measure.  When the potatoes were done, they went into the pot too.

We ate it with slices of Heidelberg French Peasant bread, my new favorite (edging out sourdough).  It was a fine dinner for a cold day such as Sunday.  Today is a cold day too.  I wonder how Steven will feel about leftovers.

In any case, this concludes my blog post.  Can we consider it a Monday Mental Meanderings or should I start a new feature: Menu Monday?  Any thoughts?