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Aug 20, 2012 05:07 PM

What's in your slow cooker today

Hope to clean up the rep of the crockpot from the "office potluck nightmare" or "dumpall dinner vessel". I love my crockpots and use them almost daily, for ingredients and for whole meals. Please do share a brief description of your slow cooker contents and their planned fate. :)

Here's my past week to kick things off (I have 2 c, 1.5 qt, 3 qt, and 4 qt models):

whole oats for breakfast (in the 2 c)
chicken thighs, onions, white wine for chicken dishes (1.5 qt)

veg scraps, chicken thigh bones, pork rib bones for stock (1.5 qt)
chickpeas for cold salads (2 c)

quinoa for tabbouleh and breakfast cereal (2 c)
Good Mother Stallard beans for side dishes (2 c)

Monday (today):
large chopped onion/olive oil for caramelized onion paste (2 c)

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  1. Figs in vanilla syrup. I add them to oatmeal, serve with ice cream or just eat them on their own.

    1. I use my slow cooker probably only once a week at the moment. I last used it on Saturday to make chili, a popular dish to come out of the slow cooker in our home.

      1. I've got a beef roast in the crock pot today, along with a couple of oxtail (to help make the gravy) and a bunch of carrots. I'm making mashed potatoes on the side, otherwise I would have thrown some cubed red potatoes in as well. It's one of my specialties...everyone who has ever had it, loves it.

        I'll be using my slow cooker again in another day or two to make applesauce.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Maggiethecat

          the kid has a frozen beef roast that he wants to use in his crocker tomorrow. he asked me if I had any ideas, I said I'd look here for something out of the ordinary.
          you say your beef roast is one of your specialties mind sharing the recipe of how you do it? TIA

        2. Brown rice today, for side dish

          Maggie, I make a mean beef-barley soup in slow cooker. Can't wait for cooler weather again.

          5 Replies
          1. re: DuchessNukem

            I'd love to have your recipe - my all time favorite soup. I make in on the stove. I just made some yesterday, but I've never made soup in my 6 qt. slow cooker.

            Thanks in advance.

            1. re: Canthespam

              I wish I had a definitive recipe but I'm a twiddler, the recipe changes every time (it's why I'm a crappy baker). Stews just tend to get whatever's available in fridge/freezer; sometimes I brown the meat, sometimes a frozen block gets dropped into the pot. Barley goes in at the same time as base ingredients since I don't mind if it starts to meld with the broth.

              Your own stovetop stew recipe will likely do very well in the slow cooker, just consider the amount of liquid added since the crockpot won't boil it off. :)

              1. re: DuchessNukem

                Thanks Duchess. I guess I was more concerned about the cooking time, but of course after 4-5 hours I can check the tenderness of the meat.

                I would use the same ingredients that I use for my stovetop barley soup... really killer soup..

                I use short ribs on the bone and 5-6 marrow bones, when the meat falls off of the bones, I know it it done, and I remove the bones and let it cook down to a thicker liquid, and I add the marrow back into the finished soup.. although I love it salted with bread... bad stuff - fat-wise.

                  1. re: DuchessNukem

                    I like my soups thick with a lot of meat. We make a meal out of it, with maybe a salad and bread.

                    3 lbs. short ribs on bones - trim off as much fat as you can
                    4-5 soup bones - marrow if possible
                    1 chopped onion
                    1/4 cup pearl barley
                    2 carrots - cut up
                    1 stalk of celery - cut up
                    Salt and Pepper
                    1 package Goodmans (or whatever brand you find) packaged soup mix, long cellophane package, corn, lima beans etc.. with a small package of mushroom and seasonings in a separate little package at the end of the roll.) Save the little package of mushrooms for later.

                    Put 10 cups of water in a dutch oven. Bring to a boil and add the meat, bones and some salt.. Keep skimming the foamy stuff off of the top. maybe 10 - 15 minutes. Then and all of the vegetables (including the packaged veggies). Not the mushrooms.

                    Reduce to a simmer. Cover and simmer 2 - 2.5 hours, stirring occasionally, until the meat falls off the bones.

                    Remove the meat and the bones and continue cooking the soup uncovered until it thickens a bit. Add the small cellophane package of mushrooms and cook about 15 minutes longer.

                    If you use marrow bones, scoop out the marrow and put back into the soup.

                    Keep the meat refrigerated separately. Put the soup in a bowl or container and cool down in the sink with ice water. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

                    The next day remove the thick layer of fat from the top, add the meat, which has been cut up in smaller pieces. Reheat, salt and pepper - enjoy..

                    Freezes well.

                    Maybe someday I will try this in my slow cooker, but I've been making it on the stove for so many years that I hate to change anything.

          2. Last night threw lobster shells and veg scraps in for lobster stock in the 3-qt.

            Today, three giant yellow onions, chopped, for caramelized onion paste (test batch last week was wonderful).

            2 Replies
            1. re: DuchessNukem

              Hi - was wonder if you'd sahre your carmelized onion paste recipe? Sounds great, and doing it ahead of time is a huge plus. Thanks.

              1. re: mitchell25418

                Nothing elaborate to them, sorry! Simply slice your choice of onions, pile into crockpot, add a bit of olive oil or butter, then cook till nicely browned (I think I went about 9-10 hours on low in the 3.5 qt). Cool, then toss into food processor or blender and whirl till smooth. Freeze in meal-sized amounts (1/2 c to 1 c for us, in ziplocs laid flat). Can add plain yogurt to make creamier.