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Wow, it seems that everyone was very interested in crockpot recipes!  Since it was a popular subject and so many of you sent me pm’s and commented on the subject-I thought we should give it another week.

One of our sorority sisters told me about putting up a corned beef in her crock.  Another beef stew.  My own daughter (who is obviously not yet lucky enough to be fabulously 40 and beyond)called to ask how to thicken her beef stew.

I have to say, my family is divided about corned beef-in any form.  But I have found a few “tricks” to preparing one.  One-I know it hurts the budget, but don’t buy the cut that’s the cheapest.  Go for the more expensive roast.  It comes out more tender, less stringy and, if it’s possible, less fatty.  I use red potatoes in the crock, they hold their shape, wear idahos/russets always turn to mush-I hate mush.  This holds true for stews and soups of all kinds.  

Like the pea soup-add a bottle of beer instead of plain water-this also helps tenderize the meat.

For beef stews-add a couple of cups of red wine (one you would like to drink!)to the beef or vegetable stock you are using.  It really deepens the flavors.

Now one of our sisters said her family’s favorites was chicken breasts made with cream of mushroom soup.  My hat is off to her!  Whenever I’ve tried chicken in the crock my family absolutely hated it.  Doesn’t matter if I used thighs and drumsticks or chicken breasts-they called it unedible.  

Trust me, in 27+ years of marriage I’ve only had my family tell me that about 6 times and 3 of them were because I served them chicken from the crockpot.  So I won’t go there.

To thicken soups and stews-I prefer to make a cold slurry out of corn starch and cold water and stirring it in to the pot about 30 minutes before serving.  Cover it back up and let it finish up and you have a very nice base.

On Wednesday-let’s talk about the advantages of dirtying up another pot with different cuts of meat before putting into our time-saving friend.



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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cynthia Schmidt wrote Sep 14, 2008
    • Hi Carine
      Thanks for another week of slow cooking thoughts. I like the thickening idea of using corn starch. And beer as a tenderizer, can’t wait to try it.

      I’ve a question for you. I’m looking for an online source for gourmet salt. Gray sea salt would be nice but I’d like some suggestions if you have any. We‘re very limited here on gourmet and high quality ingredients. Seems whenever we get either a kitchen store or a gourmet food store, it closes within a year. Our economy can’t support such an animal.
      Thanks!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Carine Nadel wrote Sep 14, 2008
    • Cynthia, let me research this for you-I can understand gourmet spice stores having a problem on the island-but I would have never guessed that gray sea salt would not have been in all the local markets!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Leeann wrote Sep 14, 2008
    • Anyone have a good recipe for white chile.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Carine Nadel wrote Sep 17, 2008
    • LeeAnn,
      Try allrecipes.com or cooking.com
      both always have good ideas!  Another one that might have a very upscale version is epicurious.com!



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