House cleaning is like stringing beads with no knot at the end of the thread.

"Usually the Lord gives us the overall objectives to be accomplished and some guidelines to follow, but he expects us to work out most of the details and methods." -Ezra Taft Benson-







Monday, October 10, 2011

Crock-Pot Challenge Week 1

First, I'm sorry. I forgot to take pictures!  UGH.. Owell, we had some wonderful yumminess this last week.

Split Pea Soup
2 cups cubed ham or a meaty ham hock (or a kielbasa cut up, or italian sausage cooked and cut up)**
2 cups split peas, rinsed and checked for rocks
small onion minced
2 carrots, cut into chunks
1 bay leaf
2 cloves of garlic, minced
fresh ground pepper
1 and 1/2 quarts of chicken stock
water

Place all in crock pot and give a stir to break up the pea clumps, for some reason they like to stick together when wet. Put the lid on and set it to low and let it go all day. Stir well before serving. If we use a meaty ham bone, then we will pull the bone out and take all the meat off and put it in the crock pot. The dog usually gets the bone when I am done with it. Then stir the meat in well and serve.
**I use just about any kind of high flavor meat. I have used smoked ham hocks, the bone from the spiral cut ham from costco, kielbasa sausage, italian bulk sausage, brats.  The key is to have a good flavor meat.

We also had a new "chili", one we liked quite a bit! It's from the Taste of Home Casserole book. This is thick, not a soupy chili.  The rice kind of makes it creamy. The kids must have loved it because when I got home from work I got praises and there was only a little left for DH and I to share.

Chili Casserole
1 pound bulk sausage (we used hamburger)
2 cups water
1 can (15-1/2 ounces) chili beans, undrained (I used home canned black beans)
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained (I used homemade mexican soup base, salsa that didn't turn out)
3/4 cup uncooked long grain rice (I used cal-rose as it is what I have)
1/4 cup chopped onion (I used half an onion, and cut it up fine)
1 Tablespoon chili powder (I used 2 tsp. as I ran out of chili powder)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon prepared mustard (French's)
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder (I used 2 cloves garlic minced)
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese (oops forgot this)

In a skillet, cook the sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Transfer to slow cooker. Add the next 10 ingredients; stir well. Cover and cook on low for 7 hours or until rice is tender. Stir in cheese; cook 10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Yield: 6 servings.
**We did not use the cheese. Infact we try not to use a lot of dairy or rely on it as it is hard to keep cheese good when the power is out. Besides, it didn't need it.


We also made chicken stock.
Baked chicken bones (bones from dinner the night before, and no, I pulled the meat off of them and only served the meat)
Salt, 2 to 3 teaspoons
Bay leaf
Carrot peelings
Onion, 1/4 to 1/2 of an onion
1 to 4 cloves garlic, smashed or minced

Put all in crock pot, cover with water; Cover and turn on low for 8 to 10 hours or overnight. Strain, and transfter to quart jars or a bowl and put in fridge. When cold, scrape off the fat. Bring to boil if going to can it. IF not using right away, you can wait to scrape off the fat for when you will be using it.

We also had Crock-Pot Mud Cake, it is a favorite!

So for the first week, we used our crock pot 4 times. I hope to have a day where everything is cooked in a crock pot.. Maybe this week.

I will try to update these with pictures when I make them again :) 

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