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Slow-cook crock pot a real timesaver
richmondregister ^ | October 13, 2010 | Gina Noe

Posted on 10/20/2010 1:23:38 PM PDT by JoeProBono

Slow-cooker cooking is a rite of fall.

In this hurry-up society, cooking a hot, nutritious meal seems almost a thing of the past. But, if you have the discipline to think about dinner at breakfast time, your reward can be a meal that’s ready when you get home.

The slow-cook crock pot not only improves the variety and flavor of the food you serve, but it can cut the time you spend in the kitchen almost in half. The slow cooker won’t replace the stove top or the oven because it cooks foods in a different way. Main dishes, casseroles and soups are particularly adaptable to this method.

Slow cookers can be purchased in a variety of sizes. There is a one-quart model for singles and a 12-quart roaster oven that not only slow cooks, but performs a variety of other cooking functions. So slow cooking can fit any family’s needs.

Here are a few tips for using your slow cooker:

• The slow cooker should be 1/2 to 3/4 full when in use.

• Liquids do not boil away, so the liquid amount should be reduced by half from what an oven or stove top recipe requires.

• Keep the lid on the slow cooker while it is in use. There is no need to stir the food once cooking has started. Do not remove the lid until you are adding final ingredients during the last half hour of cooking or the cooking process is done.

• It is not safe to use the slow cooker to thaw or cook frozen meats.


TOPICS: Food
KEYWORDS: crockpot
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All Day Crockpot Delight

Ingredients: •2 to 3 pounds stew beef or lean chuck, cut in cubes •1/2 cup flour •1/4 cup butter •1 medium onion, sliced •1 teaspoon salt •1/8 teaspoon pepper •1 clove garlic, minced •12 ounces beer •1/4 cup flour Preparation: Coat beef cubes with the 1/2 cup flour. Brown in skillet in the butter. Drain off excess fat. In slow cooker, combine browned meat with onion, salt, pepper, garlic and beer. Cover and cook on low 6 to 9 hours, or until meat is tender. Turn control to high. Dissolve remaining 1/4 cup flour in small amount of cold water. Stir into meat mixture, cook on high 30-40 minutes longer. Serve with rice and salad.


1 posted on 10/20/2010 1:23:40 PM PDT by JoeProBono
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To: JoeProBono
Funny you should mention that! I just set my crockpot this morning, and plan to eat some delicious buffalo stew tonight!
2 posted on 10/20/2010 1:25:55 PM PDT by curiosity
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To: JoeProBono

We are big fans of our slow cooker. It is so old it is almond coloured with cute little mushrooms painted as decor.

A question for you. From the article the text says “Slow-cooker cooking is a rite of fall.” Do we no longer capitalize Spring and Fall to denote seasons? Shouldn’t this be “ a rite of Fall”? Or am I an anachronism....


3 posted on 10/20/2010 1:27:23 PM PDT by Blueflag (Res ipsa loquitur)
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To: JoeProBono

I like the convenience, but crock pots tend to dry out whatever meat is being cooked.


4 posted on 10/20/2010 1:27:33 PM PDT by kidd
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To: curiosity

I use mine year round. In fact I have several.


5 posted on 10/20/2010 1:29:34 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: curiosity

One of my easiest favorites: take a 3 lb or so pork roast, put in the slow cooker. One can of condensed cream of mushroom soup, one packet of dry onion soup mix (can be cheap store brand). Mix the onion soup stuff into the mushroom, then add approx 1 can of water, combine this well. Pour over the roast. Put the lid on, set on medium/medium high. Go to work. YUM If you want to be fancy, stick some potato chunks and carrots down around the edges.


6 posted on 10/20/2010 1:29:34 PM PDT by NEMDF
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To: Blueflag

Our grammar textbooks teach us that we don’t capitalize the seasons.


7 posted on 10/20/2010 1:31:52 PM PDT by Persevero (Homeschooling for Excellence since 1992)
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To: kidd

All depends on how much water you add.


8 posted on 10/20/2010 1:33:06 PM PDT by US Navy Vet
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To: JoeProBono

Tasty variation: marinate the beef, cubed, in Merlot or , Sauvignon overnight. Then, follow the recipe above exactly, only instead of beer, add 12 oz. of Merlot/Cabernet. Essentially, a poor-man’s beef Bourginon.


9 posted on 10/20/2010 1:33:18 PM PDT by SAJ (Zerobama -- a phony and a prick, therefore a dildo.)
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To: Blueflag

It seems contrary to logic, but the seasons are not capitalized.


10 posted on 10/20/2010 1:33:25 PM PDT by scott7278 ("...I have not changed Congress and how it operates the way I would have liked." BHO)
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To: kidd
I like the convenience, but crock pots tend to dry out whatever meat is being cooked.

I haven't found very many recipes that I like from a crock pot. Takes longer than just coking it on the stove or oven and as you pointed out, tough meat. My sil used to do her roasts in the crock pot all the time. They were tough.

11 posted on 10/20/2010 1:33:52 PM PDT by Netizen
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To: JoeProBono

Although I still have my old Presto Harvest Gold pot ... the original, I don’t like the way crock pot recipes come out.

They are all overcooked and too much liquid.


12 posted on 10/20/2010 1:34:09 PM PDT by BunnySlippers (I love BULL MARKETS . . .)
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To: kidd
I like the convenience, but crock pots tend to dry out whatever meat is being cooked.

Yes, you have to avoid lean cuts of meat, such as pork tenderloin. It works fine for pork or beef roast, though.

My favorite slow-cooker recipe is "Ultimate Crock-Pot Oatmeal" from mrbreakfast.com. I heavily doctor it with extra apple and dried fruit and use steel-cut oats (they don't turn to mush as easily). Definitely worth a try.

13 posted on 10/20/2010 1:35:07 PM PDT by Charles Martel ("Endeavor to persevere...")
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To: kidd

crock pots tend to dry out whatever meat is being cooked.


That’s all about the cut of meat. You won’t dry out a Chuck roast, pork shoulder, lamb shank, or short ribs.


14 posted on 10/20/2010 1:35:42 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed ("Nobody tell Barack Obama what number comes after a trillion" --S.P.)
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To: kidd

I have the crock pot pictured above. It must be defective because it cooks food in about half the listed time. On low, a pot roast is done in 4-5 hours, not the 7-9 listed in the manual. I was very disapointed in my roasts until I stopped cooking one after 4 hours and it was perfect (160deg). If I tried to cook longer than my work day, all the fooods came out dry or overcooked. anyway, my $.02.


15 posted on 10/20/2010 1:36:14 PM PDT by Unassuaged (I have shocking data relevant to the conversation!)
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To: kidd

Don’t use too much water either, allow the fat in the meat to do it’s job and not float to the top of water that you might pour off.


16 posted on 10/20/2010 1:38:07 PM PDT by Anitius Severinus Boethius
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To: NEMDF

SUPER easy recipe here: take country style pork ribs, put them in the crock pot. Pour 1 large can of sauerkraut over them and cook all day. Super simple, super yummy!!!!


17 posted on 10/20/2010 1:38:42 PM PDT by Dooderbutt
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To: Unassuaged

I bought a Rival model that features a digital timer. When you set it on low, it cooks it in 4-5 hours and then lowers the temperature to where food doesn’t overcook.


18 posted on 10/20/2010 1:39:10 PM PDT by scott7278 ("...I have not changed Congress and how it operates the way I would have liked." BHO)
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To: Blueflag

I had Summer jobs at a regional retail chain in college. You could tell what the big Christmas items were going to be because of the massive influx of the “same” item from different vendors. Crock pots from Rival, Sunbeam, etc. Shower heads, curling irons, and toaster ovens bring back memories. (Finding legal room to store luggage was the worst.)

Almond was the alternative color at the time to Harvest Gold or Avocado Green. “Platinum” was the classy synonym for “Almond” used by some vendors.


19 posted on 10/20/2010 1:40:15 PM PDT by Calvin Locke
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To: Netizen

>>>They were tough.

Then she’s not doin’ it right. I take about a 4 pound pork shoulder, put some dry rub on it - then put it in the crock with some carrot, celery, and onion under it - and dump in a can of cola - and let it go for 8+ hours... couldn’t slice it if I wanted to because it falls apart.


20 posted on 10/20/2010 1:41:30 PM PDT by Keith in Iowa (FR Class of 1998 | TV News is an oxymoron. | MSNBC = Moonbats Spouting Nothing But Crap.)
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To: Beelzebubba

all of which are greasy cuts of meat.

A quick trip through a boiling water bath can eliminate
some of the fat content.


21 posted on 10/20/2010 1:41:33 PM PDT by rahbert
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To: curiosity

You know you can just buy a dutch oven and use it in your oven as a slow cooker. A lot cheaper than buying a counter top slow cooker.


22 posted on 10/20/2010 1:41:55 PM PDT by equalitybeforethelaw
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To: JoeProBono

Well whaddya know...news of the crockpot has come to Richmond.


23 posted on 10/20/2010 1:42:52 PM PDT by bigbob
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To: Unassuaged
That's because the newer crock pots cook hotter. I heard they were afraid someone would get food poisoning and sue. I have an old one and two new ones, the new ones cook waaay too fast and hot.
24 posted on 10/20/2010 1:42:58 PM PDT by ladyvet (I would rather have Incitatus then the asses that are in congress today.)
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To: curiosity

CHUCKWAGON BUFFALO STEW


25 posted on 10/20/2010 1:43:50 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Visualize)
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To: NEMDF; JoeProBono
I like to cook a Boston butt pork roast with a cup of beef broth and a quarter cup of coffee along with a few choice herbs and spices in a crock pot for about twelve hours. Once done, I reduce the liquid to use as a base for a sauce while using two forks to shred the meat.

Pulled pork, yum!

26 posted on 10/20/2010 1:43:54 PM PDT by magslinger ('This is a United States Marine Corps FA-18 fighter. Send 'em up, I'll wait!')
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To: JoeProBono

It is not safe to use the slow cooker to thaw or cook frozen meats.

I used to cook frozen roast in there regularly. Done to perfection in 10 hours.


27 posted on 10/20/2010 1:44:24 PM PDT by Califreak (November 2008 proved that Idiocracy isn't just a movie anymore)
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To: JoeProBono

Just don’t include carrots, at least not until toward the end; or everything will be carrot flavored.


28 posted on 10/20/2010 1:44:51 PM PDT by Minn
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To: Netizen

Is it possible that those roasts that turned out tough may have been put into the crock pot frozen? Methinks meat should be fresh or completely thawed if it had been frozen, before putting them in contact with salt, spices, etc., or applying heat. FWIW


29 posted on 10/20/2010 1:45:01 PM PDT by Tucker39
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To: SAJ

Bump for some more great recipes; this one sounds Great!


30 posted on 10/20/2010 1:45:57 PM PDT by rambo316
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To: Keith in Iowa

Like I mentioned, its way faster to just put it in the oven or cook on the stove. I seldom use my crockpot. Every time I try it because some recipes looks good, its always a disappointment.


31 posted on 10/20/2010 1:46:03 PM PDT by Netizen
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To: ladyvet

I have two older crock pots and use them year round. Soup, stew, chili, cheap cuts of meat, etc are easy with these.


32 posted on 10/20/2010 1:46:26 PM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Impeachment !)
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To: Blueflag

I was taught to capitalize the seasons, but these days the MS Word spell checker identifies capitalized seasons as spelling errors.


33 posted on 10/20/2010 1:46:29 PM PDT by ViLaLuz (2 Chronicles 7:14)
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To: Blueflag
Shouldn’t this be “ a rite of Fall”?

Or should the quotation marks be outside the punctuation?

:^)

At my house it's a "rite of fall," because the last time I used the crock pot, I slipped and fell in the kitchen. On my 3-month-old replacement hip....

34 posted on 10/20/2010 1:46:35 PM PDT by Cyber Liberty (We conservatives will always lose elections as long as we allow the MSM to choose our candidates.)
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To: Blueflag

I learned something that’s either new, or I’ve forgotten over the eons since I was in school. :)

“Seasons start with a capital letter when they go with another noun or when they personify. Here they function as proper nouns: “Autumn Open House”; “I think Spring is showing her colors”; “Old Man Winter”. However, in the general sense, they do not start with a capital letter: “This summer was very hot.”


35 posted on 10/20/2010 1:47:25 PM PDT by Politicalmom
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To: equalitybeforethelaw
You know you can just buy a dutch oven and use it in your oven as a slow cooker.

I have a dutch oven too, but leaving my stove or oven on all day when I'm not home is a fire hazard. On the other hand, leaving the slow cooker on low all day is perfectly safe.

36 posted on 10/20/2010 1:47:49 PM PDT by curiosity
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To: JoeProBono

I got a little ‘personal’ crock pot when I was in college and I still use it today. One of the first things I learned to make was putting a pork tenderloin with bar-b-q sauce, onion, and some sprite and letting it slow cook all day. Got home from long day of classes and that tenderloin had turned into basically pulled pork. Makes for great sandwiches.


37 posted on 10/20/2010 1:48:31 PM PDT by LoneStarGI (Vegetarian: Old Indian word for "BAD HUNTER.")
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To: Dooderbutt

I actually use a slow cooker (oblong metal pan with glass lid that sits on base). I have never had a crock pot. I would love the pork ribs with sauerkraut, but those who live with me would protest the odor, I am afraid.

A fast/easy chili for those who can lower themselves to a fast/easy chili: 1.5 lbs or more ground beef, browned. 1 green pepper, chopped kind of coarsely, 1 onion chopped kind of coarsely. Add 2 cans beans, not drained (I like to use one can kidney and one can pinto), large can of chopped style tomatoes, not drained (the 28 oz can), and 3-4 TBSP chili powder. Mix all togther in the slow cooker, put in fridge overnight. Put it on the base (covered) in the morning.


38 posted on 10/20/2010 1:48:46 PM PDT by NEMDF
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To: Anitius Severinus Boethius

Liquids do too cook off!

I count on it to make my apple butter! I fill the crock pot with home made, sugar free apple sauce. Add a couple of tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Add 1 1/2 tablespoon Apple Pie Spice, and cook on low overnight. I give it a stir every time I get up to go potty.

In the morning, it has reduced by half, and is wonderful, sugar free apple butter.

If you have never canned before, but are interested in learning how to preserve this wonderful stuff, shoot me a PM, and I’ll tell you what you need to know, and also give you some links that I rely on for good canning information.


39 posted on 10/20/2010 1:48:53 PM PDT by passionfruit (When illegals become legal, even they won't do the work Americans won't do)
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To: JoeProBono

I skip the meat and use my crock pot to cook pinto beans and minestrone soup

I suggest that instead of passing out EBT cards and food stamps, the government should merely give out pinto beans, rice, and perhaps cheese. Deadbeats would be healthier, and less people would sign up for the benefits.


40 posted on 10/20/2010 1:49:18 PM PDT by mountaineer1997
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To: Tucker39

I’m pretty sure they were thawed. You are not supposed to put frozen meat in the crockpot.


41 posted on 10/20/2010 1:50:26 PM PDT by Netizen
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To: Califreak

My sister puts a frozen meatloaf in hers, a couple carrots under it to keep it off the bottom. Says it’s done perfectly in about 10 hours. I have not tired this, though.


42 posted on 10/20/2010 1:51:48 PM PDT by NEMDF
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
I use mine year around also. They are good for the things you mentioned. Also they are handy when you need to keep things warm like mashed potatoes on Thanksgiving, etc.
43 posted on 10/20/2010 1:52:12 PM PDT by ladyvet (I would rather have Incitatus then the asses that are in congress today.)
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To: Netizen

I have a roast cooking in the electric frypan right now!

The problem I have with the crock pot is that it takes forever and a day to actually start cooking. If I have 12 hours to kill, that’s fine. But it usually takes about 6 hours for the doggone thing to get to an almost-simmer. Just a little more heat and a warmup mode would be great.


44 posted on 10/20/2010 1:52:15 PM PDT by meyer (Tax the productive to carry the freeloaders - What is it with democrats and slavery?)
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To: JoeProBono

The bachelor’s best friend.

Pot Roast: Add a chuck roast and a can of Campbell’s French onion soup. Carrots and potatoes if you have them. Cook overnight or all day while you are at work. Excellent for football Saturdays.

Barbecue Pork: Add a pork roast and very little chicken broth or water and cook all day. Chop up the meat, remove any bones and add sauce. Put onto sandwich buns. Eat.

Chili: Add ground beef, browned if you want to, diced tomatoes, chili powder, hot pepper, an onion, beans, frozen corn and salt. Cook 6 to 12 hours. Good with cheese and chips.

Why is it unsafe to use frozen meat? I almost always do. I do most crock pot cooking overnight for 10 hours typically. I figure any bacteria would be dead after that.


45 posted on 10/20/2010 1:52:50 PM PDT by The Free Engineer
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To: kidd

Guidelines help you get the most from your slow-cooker

Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 12:00 AM Updated: Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 8:52 AM Katherine Miller, The Oregonian

TEST KITCHEN

It's officially slow-cooker weather, and even though it seems as if this appliance is no more complicated than a toaster, there are some guidelines you should follow -- some for the sake of safety, others for quality. Here are some tips from the USDA and Taste of Home magazine:

•Don't put frozen or partially thawed meat or poultry into a slow-cooker. They take longer to get to 165 degrees (the temperature at which illness-causing bacteria are killed) and they can also cool everything down in the cooker. That's a recipe for a bacteria playground.

•To cook food properly and safely, fill at least half full but not more than two-thirds full. Veggies cook slower than meat or poultry, so put them on the bottom and sides of the cooker surrounding the meat or poultry, then cover with your liquid. Most meat with vegetables take at least 8 hours on low to cook thoroughly.

•If converting a conventional recipe, reduce the amount of liquid you use by half -- unless you're cooking uncooked beans, rice or pasta, which soak up a lot of liquid.

•To avoid overcooking tender vegetables such as tomatoes and mushrooms, add them about 45 minutes before serving. For rice or pasta, allow 45 to 60 minutes.

•Resist opening the lid. Every time you do, you increase the cooking time by 20 to 30 minutes.

•There's no need to preheat a slow-cooker. However, if possible, set the cooker to its highest setting for the first hour, then lower it to your desired temperature.

•Although browning meat is not necessary, it allows you to reduce the fat content and enhances the color and flavor of the meat.

http://www.oregonlive.com/foodday/index.ssf/2010/10/love_that_slow-cooker_but_trea.html


46 posted on 10/20/2010 1:53:19 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Visualize)
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To: NEMDF
(I like to use one can kidney and one can pinto)

I do that too, but I use a lot more seasonings.

47 posted on 10/20/2010 1:54:24 PM PDT by Netizen
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To: JoeProBono
Unfortunately the government has taken much of the value out of slow cookers. They no longer are made to cook at the same low temperatures, and will end up boiling what they are cooking. I'm latched onto my old one quite strongly.
48 posted on 10/20/2010 1:54:50 PM PDT by Vision ("Did I not say to you that if you would believe, you would see the glory of God?" John 11:40)
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To: Cyber Liberty

ahem ... it’s actually OK to place the question mark outside a verbatim quote to explicitly note that the question mark is part of the author’s text, and not part of the quotation.

For instance.

I think Obama is despicable for thrice omitting “endowed by our Creator”!

At least I was taught that YEARS ago ...


49 posted on 10/20/2010 1:55:05 PM PDT by Blueflag (Res ipsa loquitur)
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To: JoeProBono
So Meaty!!

50 posted on 10/20/2010 1:55:05 PM PDT by Lucky9teen (The trouble ain't that there is too many fools, but that the lightning ain't distributed right.)
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