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sonik
03-18-2003, 08:08 AM
I like to cook my food for the week on sunday so Im looking for some ways to cook beef, veggies at one time. Anyone got any directions for me, I just bought my crockpot so ive never used it before.

IceRgrrl
03-18-2003, 08:30 AM
I do the same thing, cook stuff on the weekend for the whole week, and I use my crockpot a LOT! It's a very convenient way to make a big batch of really good stuff with very little fuss.

I'd recommend going to a good bookstore and looking at a bunch of crockpot cookbooks...there are a lot of good ones out there that not only have great recipes, but give good background info on what to do/what not to do with your crockpot, what kinds of foods respond well to slow cooking and which do not, how to time your cooking, and also how to adapt non-crockpot recipes to the crockpot.

Also, just doing an internet search on crockpot recipes will lead you to thousands of sites.

I rarely use recipes--I'm more of a dump-and-pour cook who doesn't measure much (I go by feel and experience) so I can't really give you any rigorous recipes, but here's some starters:

Mexican Chicken: (shred for burritos, taco salad, over rice, etc.)
Big package of boneless/skinless chicken breasts
One envelope of taco/fajita seasoning (you can get the low sodium kind) OR salt/pepper/chili powder/cumin/cayenne blend.
Splash of water

Roast w/ Veggies
Big hunk 'o meat (beef, venison, etc.)
Quartered cooking onion or whole pearl onions
Chopped carrots or pkg. of baby carrots
Chopped garlic
Salt/pepper/basil/whatever seasonings you like
1 c. water

Italian Chicken
Big package of boneless/skinless chicken breasts
Marinara sauce (your own or canned)
Chopped green peppers and onions
Chopped garlic
Splash of red wine
Basil/oregano/rosemary/Parmesan/pepper/salt

Thai Chicken
Big package of boneless/skinless chicken breasts
Red curry sauce
Lime juice
Fish sauce
Chopped onions/scallions
Lite coconut milk
Spices like lemongrass and red pepper...

Chili
Chopped meat
Jar of salsa or can of diced tomatoes or both
Can of black beans
Can of kidney beans
Can of garbanzo beans
Chopped green pepper and onion
Chili powder/cumin/cayenne/salt/pepper

I usually get creative and add other stuff/finesse the preparations according to what sounds good, but you get the idea...

Soups and meatloaf and stuff like that cooks well in the crockpot as well as using it to stew a whole chicken for soup stock or whatever.

Good luck :)

Tryska
03-18-2003, 08:33 AM
that thai chicken recipe looks really good ice.

i have a question for you tho? how do you get the flavors to meld? I've found when i try to make recipes witht he crockpot, i never get the falvors to meld correctly, and still wind up with somethign kinda week with lots of spices singularly floatign about. Much different from if you ahd simmered on the stove for a 45 minutes.

IceRgrrl
03-18-2003, 08:34 AM
Hmmm...I've found that cooking it on "low" setting for a LONG time, like overnight/12 hours really helps the flavors to blend. Also, cooking it and letting it sit overnight helps lots of things. Soups, sauces, meatloaf, almost everything except seafood is better the next day ;)

Tryska
03-18-2003, 08:40 AM
ah okay. yeah, i've never gone over 5 or 6 hours. maybe it's the legth of time and not necessarily the method of cookignt hat's my problem.

i think i'm gonna try that thai chicken recipe.

the doc
03-18-2003, 08:42 AM
yeah the best is to start it when you get up in the morning, and cook for 8-12 hours :)

Relentless
03-18-2003, 08:42 AM
suggestion for the roast recipe:

add beef broth/stock instead of water
also add worcestershire sauce :D

IceRgrrl
03-18-2003, 08:46 AM
Originally posted by Callahan
suggestion for the roast recipe:

add beef broth/stock instead of water
also add worcestershire sauce :D

Yes, if I have some good homemade beef stock, I use that instead of water, but I can't bring myself to use the canned or prepared stuff...too much salt and I'm a stock snob anyways :p

IceRgrrl
03-18-2003, 08:49 AM
Originally posted by the doc
yeah the best is to start it when you get up in the morning, and cook for 8-12 hours :)

And then when you get home, it's ready and the whole house smells good :D

When I'm really busy (which seems to be all the time) I assemble everything the night before in the stoneware liner, put that in the fridge overnight, and then pop it in the cooker and turn it on in the morning before I leave.

Also, if you want to closely control the cooking time or aren't sure you're going to be home on time and don't want to overcook, you can use a timer (like the kind you use for Christmas lights) to start/stop it at set times. This is especially useful when you're using tomato sauce or tomato products because overcooking will cause the sugars in the tomato to carmelize and possibly screw up your dish.

Berserker
03-18-2003, 10:04 AM
I do about the same as IceR. Get everything ready the night before, put the insert in the fridge then put it going in the morning before work. I usually around 8-12 hours, closer to 10. I always use low. Sometimes I'll use high to get it up to temp, then turn to low.
A crock pots is almost as good as having a wife, you get a hot meal when you come home, maybe better.

Pup
03-18-2003, 06:47 PM
A thread about crockpots...where is anthony when you need him.