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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-17-11 05:25 PM
Original message
Crock pot cookers? I know you all are probably serious chefs but
I love to cook in a crock pot... I am newly engaged and cooking now for my fianc. I am 40 and have never been married and very independent - so I didn't do a lot of cooking until recently.

Anyone have any good advice or recipes for me?
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elleng Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-17-11 05:36 PM
Response to Original message
1. Hi, jen; you've come to the right place (again!)
Personally I have no crock-pot experience, but I'm sure you'll hear from folks here, not all of whom are 'serious chefs,' but good and experienced cooks. Also a good archive here.

:hi:
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-17-11 06:00 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. You are everywhere!!!! N/t
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canetoad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-17-11 05:56 PM
Response to Original message
2. Love my slow cooker
As crockpots are called these days. As winter is coming on here in Oz, there is a batch of soup or casserole in it most days. This is my favourite pea soup crockpot recipe. It's done in a 6 litre pot so you may need to adjust quantities depending on your appliance.

This soup is vegetarian, but you can throw a big smoked pork hock in at the beginning if you like.

1kg green split peas
1 cup pearl barley
1 cup finely sliced celery
1 large of each - potato, onion, carrot. I fling these through the grater on the food processor but you can either hand chop or grate.
Salt and pepper to taste
4 litres water

Cook for about 6 hours. Tastes much better on the second day.

I serve this topped with fresh mint leaves and a slosh of balsamic vinegar.
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-17-11 06:44 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. I made chicken and rice tonight
But I was running late - so I cooked the chicken in a skillet - then cooked the rest in the crock pot. It was good.

Thanks for the recipe. I think it sounds great - Toby - my fianc will not eat cooked vegetables!

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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-17-11 09:44 PM
Response to Original message
5. My crock pot chicken
Two pounds or so of boneless chicken breast and a jar of pace picante sauce. I cook it on low for eight hours. When I am ready to serve I dump a bag of shredded cheese into it and stir like crazy till it gets all melty. I serve it with tortillas or over rice. It's full of fat from all the cheese but it's wonderful. Pace also is a pretty good product as it's not full of chemicals or other nasty additives. You can also make this with browner ground beef or turkey and add onions, mushrooms, green peppers. Whatever!
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-17-11 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. Sounds great!
I am going to the grocery tomorrow - I'm adding this to my list! I think it would be good to make nachos out of too....
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 12:14 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. We are having this tomorrow night...
I got the stuff for it today on my lunch hour - I can't wait to have it!!! Yummy!
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 02:49 PM
Response to Reply #8
11. I cut the chicken into chunks just to make sure it cooks through
I forgot to mention that. I generally use the medium sauce but my husband prefers it when I use a half a jar of medium and a half a jar of hot. The Pace picante hot is just a little too spicy for me.
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 06:44 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. I was thinking
That after cooking that long - does the chicken shred when you stir the cheese in?
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 11:01 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. Yes
The chicken is very soft and tender.
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KC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-22-11 05:13 AM
Response to Reply #11
22. What
kind of crock pot do y'all have? The one I have is so big I rarely ever use it.
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-22-11 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #22
24. You don't have to fill it up.
I usually cook for four when I drag mine out. A jar of Pace is about 16 oz of sauce which is plenty for this recipe. Two pounds of chicken works for us but if you want left overs you can add as much as you want.
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KC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-23-11 12:45 AM
Response to Reply #24
25. Yeah it's
just so big and takes up so much room and being in an apt now there isn't a lot of counter space lol
Think I just need the old fashioned kind, the one that looks like a crock pot and not a slow cooker !
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon May-23-11 09:41 AM
Response to Reply #25
26. If you are appliance hunting
There are pressure cooker/rice cooker multi function cookers that have a simmer feature which although a little hotter than a traditional crock pot does nearly the same thing. I have one made by Cuisinart that I got at Costco for under 60 bucks. I can keep just one appliance on my counter now. I understand I have a small kitchen too.
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-19-11 09:42 PM
Response to Reply #5
17. We tried it!
It was great! Tobin S. Really liked it. We ate it in tortilla's with all the normal taco fixings... I will fix it agai and it was really good. Thanks!
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-20-11 09:07 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. You are welcome
It was one of my families favorites as well. Not healthy with all that fatty cheese but still really really tasty. You can make it with ground turkey or lean ground beef and the sauce without the cheese for a less fatty burrito or taco filling.
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-20-11 09:49 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. I brought some for my co-workers
I set some aside last night and brought some in for my co-workers to try. Toby really liked it! He ate 3 big burritos! I ate 2 and was STUFFED...
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-16-11 08:51 AM
Response to Reply #5
34. i thought i lost this. i am making it this morning. i am using round steak? instead of chicken
since we had chicken last night. wanted to say, we all love this recipe. i put the bf, pace and onions in. was checking to see what i missed. thought i had lost this thread. lo and behold, lol, that is all i needed. one of the reasons i like this recipe so much.

i add onion, and lots of cilantro.

fresh tortilla from mexican grocery store.

wanted to say thanks, months ago.
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-16-11 10:23 AM
Response to Reply #34
35. You are so very welcomed....I made it for my family a few days ago
I took the melty chicken and sauce and mixed it with cooked elbow noodles for spicy mac and chicken and cheese....
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seabeyond Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-16-11 11:06 AM
Response to Reply #35
36. how clever. because mine ends up so juicy, tis hard eating on tortilla, but
we love it. would be good with noodles. thanks
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shanti Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-18-11 04:26 PM
Response to Reply #5
39. A former coworker
was famous for her easy peasy chicken mole in the crockpot with chicken breasts and prepared mole sauce (you could make the mole sauce yourself though). she didn't cut up the chicken breasts, just dumped them in the crockpot with the sauce and cooked them until they could be shredded. serve on tortillas, flour or corn. yum!
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ejpoeta Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 07:24 AM
Response to Original message
7. crockpots are awesome!! you can make lots of things in them.
personally i have only made stew and chili, but you can make lots more things. the original set it and forget it. go to work come home to dinner. don't know what advice you could need.... some swear by those liners. I have never used them myself, but sounds like a great idea. Also, the internet has lots of recipes. I myself love www.allrecipes.com because there is lots of feedback about the recipes.
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Lucinda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 12:44 PM
Response to Original message
9. We throw in roasts (pork and beef) all the time
Beef - chuck roasts
Pork - butt roasts

They both work especially well. We season with salt, pepper, garlic powder and a little olive oil and let the meats render their own fat (so no other liquids in the pot)

I turn them after a few hours and then try and make sure they stay evenly moist. We usually let them cook until they start to fall apart. (time depends on size of pot and roast)

From there you can use them as is with veggies, use the meat make all sorts of mexican dishes (tacos burritos enchiladas etc), add bbq sauce for sandwiches, boil down the created beef stock for au jus sandwiches, etc. It's incredibly economical and you get excellent flavor from the slow cooking process.

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NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 01:48 PM
Response to Original message
10. all recipes has a TON that are reviewed and scalable
http://allrecipes.com/Recipes/Everyday-Cooking/Sensatio...

you can browse to your heart's content over there (that's what i do anyway)
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-18-11 08:30 PM
Response to Original message
13. Do you like sauerkraut?
I have a delicious recipe where you take one pork loin, sauerkraut, and some fresh (or frozen) shredded potatoes and let the crock do its thing all day.

The kraut & potatoes blend into this mild delicious side and the pork tastes fantastic. Serve up with some steamed asparagus or other veggies and it's just wonderful.
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jme0318 Donating Member (179 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-19-11 05:41 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. That sounds good! N/t
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-19-11 06:24 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. Here is the recipe. A coworker of mine gave it to me and we love it.
* 1 qt sauerkraut (Franks in the bag works great)
* 1 to 2 potatoes depending on size
* 1 pork loin or pork roast
* brown sugar

Drain kraut, but do not rinse. Grate 1 to 2 potatoes.
Mix potato with 1 cup water, generous pinch of brown sugar.
Mix the kraut into above mixture.
Put pork roast on bottom of crock pot.
Add kraut around and on top of pork roast.
Set crock pot on low and cook for ~8 hours.

(When we make this we set it up in the morning around 6am and cook it for almost 11 hours, there is very little danger of this drying out. :))
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kestrel91316 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-20-11 04:48 PM
Response to Original message
20. I LOVE my crockpot! It's the best thing for big roasts like beef or pork,
or even a bunch of chicken legs - meat gets falling-apart tender.

And for soups and stews you can't beat the convenience of coming home after work to ready-made dinner.
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csziggy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-21-11 11:54 PM
Response to Original message
21. I love the Beef Barley Stew I found on Allrecripes.com
The original was not for a crockpot, but I followed one of the comments and just dumped everything into my slow cooker and it turned out great. I added more barley than the recipe called for since there was a lot of liquid - I think I added a cup of barley.
http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Beef-Barley-Stew/Detail.as...

There was a great corned beef and cabbage recipe for the crock pot that I cooked for St. Patricks Day: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Corned-Beef-and-Cabbage-I/...

I adapt a lot of recipes originally made in Dutch ovens for my slow cooker and I usually skip the browning step. Browning may add more flavor, but it makes for more work to monitor it and to clean the extra pan.

And since a lot of crock pot recipes end up making large amounts, I freeze a lot of the end results. The Beef Barley Stew recipe got divided in three parts. Two got frozen and the third made three meals for the two of us. We later got out one of the frozen containers on a week when I did not feel like cooking - that was another 4-5 servings. I'll probably heat up the last part next week. Same deal for the corned beef and cabbage.

While chicken, even whole chicken, can be very flavorful cooked in the slow cooker, I found that they tend to fall apart and sorting out the tiny bones is a nuisance.
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Cass Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-22-11 07:46 AM
Response to Original message
23. I like the crockpot for certain things but when I make chicken recipes the chicken gets stringy
or is very dry or both. I'm not sure what I am doing wrong. I do put the chicken in frozen, maybe that's why. Or maybe I'm cooking it too long, I really don't know. I have been thinking that perhaps I need to upgrade to a crock pot with a timer function.

Anyway here is a great crock pot blog I found awhile back - there are a ton of recipes here. My favorite is the taco soup!

http://crockpot365.blogspot.com/
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flying rabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed May-25-11 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #23
27. That is a goldmine
for us lazy crockpot chefs- thanks for the link.
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Phentex Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-26-11 07:39 AM
Response to Reply #27
28. I like the Mommy Crack recipe and the one with lima beans...
sometimes I do this to my husband's family. I won't tell them what's IN a recipe until they have devoured it. :rofl:
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SwampG8r Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-17-11 01:38 AM
Response to Original message
29. here is a good one
get a hunk of pork maybe a lb and a 1/2
clean it of excess fat and brown in crock with 2 cloves garlic (just smash them with a knife edge they will dissolve before this is finished)
take 4 large baking potatoes and cut them into small cubes
one sweet onion (i recommend the st augustine sweet if available if not a vidalia will do) diced same size as potatoes
4 ribs of celery cut to same size as onions and celery
1/2 bag of baby carrots (the little ones )
add these to browning meat (in a crock pot it wont really brown but it is important to get it hot together)
while these are browning add 1 Tbsp cumin, 1 Tbsp dry oregano, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon,1 tsp ginger, 2 bay leaves (intregal)and salt and pepper to taste
put the crock on high stir well and cover

when you START to smell the herbs take a large can of V8 vegetable juice and use enough to just cover the mix in the crock
turn heat down to when you want to eat and cover
this makes the best pork stew on earth the recipe is from a wrinkled old cook on st thomas who stews mutton this way 20 lbs at a time

1 1/2 lbs pork cleaned and cubed
2 cloves garlic smashed (if you buy the prechopped garlic about 2 tspoons)
4 baking potatoes cubed stew size
1 sweet onions cubed stew size
4 ribs celery cut stew size
1/2 bag (about 3/4 cup of regular carrot)baby carrot

1T cumin
1T oregano
1/2 t cinnamon
1 t ginger
2 bay leaves
1 large can V8 vegetable juice
salt and pepper to taste

this will feed 4 hungry people and i mean hunnnnnnnnnngry people


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wildeyed Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-17-11 04:58 PM
Response to Original message
30. Crockpots are fantastic!
Convenient on busy days. Throw something in early in the day and come home to a cooked meal. It is great to get done with a long day and realize that dinner is already made. In the summer, it keeps the kitchen cool and in the winter it is great for soups, stews and roasts. Have fun with it!
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Vinca Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-18-11 02:05 PM
Response to Original message
31. I made a pot roast in one the other day for the first time and it came out great.
There are a ton of crock pot recipes at Food.com.
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lillypaddle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-02-11 11:05 AM
Response to Original message
32. Barbeque
Use a beef or pork roast (boneless), hardly any liquid, if any. When falling apart, add a bottle of your favorite bbq sauce (jazz it up with tobasco, smoke, etc). Makes great sandwiches on buns, add some slice onion & dill pickles. EASY and very good!
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TreasonousBastard Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-18-11 09:48 AM
Response to Reply #32
37. Also a great way to do ribs.
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-02-11 02:32 PM
Response to Original message
33. Crock pots are the working person's best friend
because the prep work can be done the evening before and the ingredients dumped into it in the morning and a wonderful supper will be ready when you get home. No serious chef would ever sneer at any heat source that produces good food and all serious chefs can improvise when they don't have an industrial kitchen.
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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Nov-18-11 09:53 AM
Response to Original message
38. My wife and my mom both love the crock pot.
I think the food always comes out good. Especially some stewed chicken thing my wife makes. :9
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