Mary, I’m thankful to know that I’m not the only frustrated Crock Pot user. Some stuff, such as meat on the bone, is generally OK, but a lot of prechopped meats, such as boneless chicken breast chunks, are sometimes reduced to sawdust in the slow cooker. That’s hard to prove, since I’ve never eaten sawdust, but it would at least be cheaper.
I’ll figure it out, though, since my husband has requested that this be the “winter of the Crock Pot.” I think he’s just sick of having to wait for me to make dinner after work. He often just makes himself a salad and otherwise starves until 8 or even 9 before I can get it done.
He’s more than capable of making his own dinner, and frequently does so. But sometimes we both get tired of leftovers and lunch meat. Turkey sausage, whole wheat pasta with Prego and taco kits only go so far.
Marnie Oberle recently wrote about a good Crock Pot recipe for Slow Cooker Beef Stew with Red Wine from coworker Lisa Shade. I’ll be looking for that kind of recipe all winter long. Please don’t be shy about sharing.
Here’s where you can find Marnie’s newsletter.
Sometimes, when I’m frustrated with the quality of the recipes on web sites for the masses, such as allrecipes.com, I turn to a more hoity-toity site, called Epicurious, which runs recipes that have run in high-end cooking magazines. They have a rating system (so does allrecipes), and a few of the slow cooker recipes they have come highly recommended. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m interested in their Black Bean Soup, from Bon Appétit, March 2004.
I just hope it’s not another mirage in the Crock Pot desert.