Q: I work strange hours and I'm not usually home until around 8:30 PM on most nights. I'm also the one in the relationship who does 95% of the cooking. I recently dusted off my Crock-Pot and have been trying to use my time before work to throw something together so that dinner will be ready to serve when I get home.
So far it's been working out but I've hit a wall when it comes to creative recipe ideas. I can't seem to get past stews and chilis and really need help to get out of my rut. (continued below...)
For years I've been cooking my broccoli until it's bright green and 'tender-crisp', finishing it with a squirt of lemon and maybe a little ground black pepper. Here's a recipe that takes things in the opposite direction by braising the broccoli with olive oil and garlic on a slow, mellow flame until it is sweet and meltingly tender. A final flourish of crunchy lemon-spiked breadcrumbs adds texture and a bright flavor boost.
There are few greater pleasures than an excellent pulled pork sandwich. Unless we're talking about pulled goat tacos. Or smoky pulled barbecue chicken or a plate of shredded beef so tender it melts in the mouth. It's hard to choose, so why try?
What is summer cooking, to you? For me, it means keeping things as simple as possible. In the summertime, I want meals that come together in one big pot, easy to cook and easy to reheat later. I want meals that taste like the garden, fragrant with herbs and bright flavors. I want hands-off meals, so I can retire to the back porch with a cucumber gimlet while my supper cooks.
Well, this braised chicken dish fits all those requirements beautifully.
Remember last week when Kitchn reader Sarah asked for help making no-bake cheesecake? There were many great suggestions, but one comment caught me off guard. Did you know you could make cheesecake in the slow cooker? No? Me either!
Q: I cook for one, and have a wildly varying schedule. I bought a small CrockPot thinking it would be a fairly simple way to boost my overall nutrition and "home cooked meal" count. I put in my ingredients and run it overnight. However, I am having varying success translating the recipes I find into smaller quantities. Often, the results are just too mushy. I gave in and bought a larger one with varying sized crocks but they still make too much and after freezing the balance, I am either uninterested in the leftovers or again find them too mushy.
Are there any good rules of thumb on cutting down these standard CrockPot recipes for the smaller crocks?
Q: I managed to get my hands on a hand-me-down slow cooker late in the winter from my parents this year and I was wondering if you had any suggestions of lighter spring/summer dishes that could be made using this wonderful time-saver?
This shredded braised beef in a rich sauce with a spicy kick tastes better than you can imagine. Really, it's that good. And cooking it in a slow cooker means you can have it ready and waiting when you come home from work!
Q: Do you have ideas for easy-to-freeze casseroles or slow-cooker dishes that don't use pounds of of cheese and dairy? My husband and I are looking for an easy-to-store, easy-to-transport healthy alternative to fast food salads while we spend time with a family member who is in hospice. (The hospice has taken great care of all of us, but it only has a microwave.) Thanks!
Winter is here, and the holidays are coming, and we want comfort food to feed a crowd. Best way to do that? The slow cooker!! Here are 10 recipes from our archives for easy, delicious, cold-weather food. Most of these recipes will handily feed a dinner crowd, or give you leftovers to freeze. And most use the most frugal cuts of meat, so they form the holy menu trinity of cheap, easy, and yummy.