Saturday, November 10, 2007

Two of My Favorite Recipes for Crockpot Cooking - Both Pretty Spicey!

This is a picture of the completed chili in a container waiting to take up residence in Lisa's freezer.

Well, here are two of my favorite crockpot recipes. Neither was originally for crockpots but it is so much easier to cook them that way than to stand over the stove adjusting the heat every ten minutes. The longest part is the slicing and dicing I do ahead of time. I also tend to precook meats as I don't like the slime that forms on top of the crockpot if you cook them from scratch there. For what they are worth, here is my CHILI recipe:

Large crockpot (5/12 quart to 6 quart)
2 lbs of ground turkey
2 lbs of lean round, sliced into thin strips about two inches long
2 peppers (I like red and orange ones and sometimes add another one as well), chopped
2 large onions chopped
4 cloves garlic chopped
2 16 oz cans of plain tomato sauce
1 can of water (rinse out those cans)
6 tbsp chile powder (it's not too hot)
1 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
3 tsps cumin
1 tbsp salt (adjust to your requirements)
1 1/2 tsps oregano

2 cans black beans (drained and rinsed)
2 cans pinto beans(drained and rinsed)

Cut up all the veggies and put on the bottom of the crockpot. Cook the strips of beef and ground turkey until no longer red in olive oil (very little). Add into the crockpot and then put everything but the beans into the crockpot and cook for about four hours on high. Then add the cans of beans and give it a stir and cook on low for another 3 or 4 hours. Look at during the latter time to see if you think it is done. It tastes best when reheated for some reason.

I like to serve it with some shredded cheddar or Monterrey Jack (or both) cheese on top and some corn chips. We have also used it to make nachos as it gets pretty thick over time. It is relatively lean because of the turkey and lean beef but you could put regular beef in instead of the turkey. We substitute turkey for about everything we used to use ground beef for -- we actually like the taste better and I don't get my normal beef night sweats!!

BEEF CURRY -- Probably Vindaloo

2 lbs lean beef cut into one inch chunks
2 cups beef stock
1 cinnamin stick
6 whole cloves
1 sq inch of ginger root
1 tsp chili powder
1-2 tbsp curry powder
5 Cardamom seeds (the contents of)
1 onion, sliced up
1 clove garlic, minced
1-2 tbsps of ketchup or tomato sauce (this breaks down the beef faster)
Salt and black pepper to taste

Coat the beef with thin dusting of flower in a bag. Brown in olive oil until you don't see red. Brown onion and garlic in the leftover- add some olive oil if need be. I actually two cups of water here and use this as my beef stock. At this point I throw everything in the crockpot and let it cook on high for four or five hours and then taste to see if the beef is tender. I make sure that the stock covers the beef. This is another one that tastes better reheated. I serve it with Basmati Rice (a wonderful nutty rice but brown rice would be good too) and Nan (an Indian bread) if I can find it.

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