Sunday, August 12, 2018

What We're Eating This Week 33/52

Okay.  This is a lie.

I am not doing a menu post this week (STAY TUNED FOR NEXT WEEK.  IT WILL BE THRILLING), but I am going to talk about slow cooking in the summer.

Maybe I just like to taunt Beatrix, who goes a little bit crazy on the days she lounges by the cock pot all day long smelling its increasingly intoxicating fumes, but for me, slow cookers are year-round appliances.  This is also probably because I keep my house about 68-degrees 365 days a year, so everyone is always ready to curl up with a home-cooked hot dinner.

Mostly, though, I rely on the slow cooker so often because we are nearly always running around like crazy doing kid stuff, and I get tired of spending $60+ on restaurant dinners that aren't even very fun anyway.  I have written a lot lately about the big kid milestones we are enjoying, but good behavior at restaurants is not one of them.   am sure it;s right around the corner, right?  Right?  RIGHT?

Anywho, I have a few standard crock pot dinners I find myself relying on in the summer that I don't make as often in the fall and winter.  Here are my 3 faves:

1.  Salsa chicken (or beef).  Throw a jar of salsa and some chicken broth in the crock pot.  Add cumin, garlic, paprika, and chili powder.  Add chicken or beef, depending on your preference.  Cook all day and shred before eating.  Sometimes, I add a block of cream cheese midway through, especially if I think the meat is going to be too spicy or if  have also added a can of Aldi tomatoes and chilis.  You can use this meat for tacos (my fave), enchiladas, burrito bowls, salads, nachos, etc.  So easy!  Complemented so well by garden veggies!

2.  Pulled pork for sandwiches.  I like to use, um, pork (any kind, really-- a shoulder, a loin, some chops, whatever you find in your freezer/on sale), an onion, some chicken broth, a cup of my favorite BBQ sauce, a splash of Worcestershire sauce, some brown sugar, and some minced garlic.  I just, again, throw it all in the pot, cook all day, and shred when I get home.  In the summer, this is best served with homemade coleslaw, and corn on the cob.  I prefer slider buns so I can eat more than one sandwich and not feel like a pig, but you do you. I also love to put the leftover meat (ha!  leftover meat is becoming a myth in our house as Harry and Jack now eat like humans and not like picky children) on nachos.

3.  Corn on the cob.  One day, I didn't time to boil corn before dinner or tin foil to grill it.  So!  I broke the ears in half and threw them in my slow cooker, covering them with water, butter, salt, and pepper.  I cooked them for like 3 hours in low, and they were perfect!

So there you have it-- three uses for slow cooker in the summer.  What else do you use it to make in the hot weather months?  As you know from my more-pathetic-by-the-week-help-me-it's-barely-halfway-through-the-year menus, I could use a few tips/

1 comment:

Lisa R. said...

I have a few go to's:

Chicken and stuffing- put chicken breast in (I ALWAYS use a crockpot liner makes clean up SO easy), pour stuffing over it (dry right from the box), mix the cream of chicken sour cream and water, pour over the top. Now, I double the recipe so I use like 3 or 4 chicken breast (thawed) and two boxes of stuffing (low sodium chicken), two cans of low sodium/low fat cream of chicken, about 1 cup of sour cream, and a cup of water (you can do up to like 1 1/2 cups of sour cream and water). I cook it on high for 4 hours fluffing the cream of chicken mix and stuffing half way through so it's not dry. You can add frozen green beans on top of the cream of chicken mix and for go the water. I don't like mushy veggies so I just make them separate. At the end of the four hours you just use forks to shred the chicken and combine with the stuffing.

Beef stroganoff- I also double this recipe. So I use about 2 lbs of beef stew cubed meat, two packets of Lipton onion soup mix (because I have NEVER in my life seen cream of onion soup), 3 cans cream of mushroom soup. Dump all of it in the crockpot (that's lined, of course), cook on high for four hours. At the end of the four hours, add sour cream right before serving (1/2 cup for normal recipe, 1 cup if doubled). Cook the egg noodles. Voila! I usually serve this with peas, either a steamer bag or I'll crack open a can and add it to the beef in the crockpot about 10 mins before adding the sour cream and serving.

Pinterest is THE best for crockpot recipes!