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I love my crockpot(s)


Darienne
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This topic on unconventional uses for stand mixers got me thinking about unconventional uses for crockpots. Has anyone used their crockpots for something else other than cooking and keeping food warm?

I've used mine for warming up henna for hair (in case anyone's wondering, it's a paste made from a plant used to naturally colour hair). I've only done it once, because it made a huge mess and there wasn't much room on my bathroom counter for it.

I've used mine for melting wax and also for keeping soap melted while getting ready to put the candle wax and soap into molds.

I've used a small one to heat salt into which I could dip plastic molding to soften it for shaping so it could be applied to picture frames.

Crafters often use Crock pots and slow cookers.

I've a friend that uses several for dyeing small batches of her home spun yarns.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Crafters often use Crock pots and slow cookers.

I have a niece that is an art teacher. She is also a silversmith, a painter and a glass blower. Her studio has several crock pots that she uses for various functions.

Plus, she's got an endlessly hungry husband and two teenagers to feed, so she's got a couple more crock pots that are often hard at work in her kitchen.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Recipe for the turkey breast, please? TIA!

Not really a recipe - generally cut up some onions, celery, sometimes carrots, always garlic and put in bottom of my xlarge crockpot. Add a small amount of chicken broth and some lemon juice or white wine. Put in turkey breast (always get some free ones at Thanksgiving) and cook on low for about 7 hrs or until tender. Have sometimes changed it up with different spice mixes - cajun, Mediterranean (add kalamata, sundried tomatoes, little paste), italian (piccata or marsala). If I add Cajun spices, I also make dirty rice. Sorry I don't have a real recipe - I just came up with this to cook all of the free turkey breasts when we reach a surplus.

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Recipe for the turkey breast, please? TIA!

Not really a recipe - generally cut up some onions, celery, sometimes carrots, always garlic and put in bottom of my xlarge crockpot. Add a small amount of chicken broth and some lemon juice or white wine. Put in turkey breast (always get some free ones at Thanksgiving) and cook on low for about 7 hrs or until tender. Have sometimes changed it up with different spice mixes - cajun, Mediterranean (add kalamata, sundried tomatoes, little paste), italian (piccata or marsala). If I add Cajun spices, I also make dirty rice. Sorry I don't have a real recipe - I just came up with this to cook all of the free turkey breasts when we reach a surplus.

UMMM! Sounds good to me, thanks!

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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And I do something similar with garlic and onions and salsa and Mexican chiles that turns into a terrific (and cheap) filling for tasty and low-fat turkey tacos.

That's also basically how I make our tacos de lengua.

Tacos de lengua - Recipe Gullet

______________

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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And I do something similar with garlic and onions and salsa and Mexican chiles that turns into a terrific (and cheap) filling for tasty and low-fat turkey tacos.

I will definitely try that! The reason I love the crockpot for turkey breast (especially the give away ones that are sometimes of low quality), is that it always comes out juicy. I have had very inconsistent results when roasting a turkey breast, which I generally think is due to less than stellar quality of some of them. Never have that problem with the crockpot version. I always buy a better quality turkey (e.g. for Thanksgiving) so those generally turn out really well the traditional way.

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And the current thread popping up about rice pudding reminds me that I used to make rice pudding in my crock pot very frequently. Especially when we were living in warm locales like southern Arizona or Panama and we wanted rice pudding without heating up the kitchen for a couple of hours - which, by the way, is another huge benefit of owning a crock pot in a hot climate. Not only are they perfect for stews, braises, soups, etc., when the weather is cold; they're great for things that take a long time to cook when it's 110 outside and you don't want a big hot oven to heat up your whole kitchen.

Here's a typical recipe for crock pot rice pudding:

Crock Pot Rice Pudding

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Rice pudding is a great dish for the Crock Pot.

In another thread we had a spirited discussion about dulce de leche and I posted the recipe I learned from my neighbor, based on part goat milk - the traditional Mexican confection. Significantly different from the cooked sweetened condensed milk stuff.

Many years ago, when I was able to spend vacations in a mountain cabin, I made a batch of lemon curd in the Crock Pot when our propane gas ran out because my husband had forgotten to order a refill. I had an electric skillet and the Crock Pot but no hot plate.

The lemon curd turned out quite nicely.

The main reason we took it along was to poach whole fish (mostly trout and bass) and it does a dandy job of that too.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Recipe for the turkey breast, please? TIA!

Not really a recipe - generally cut up some onions, celery, sometimes carrots, always garlic and put in bottom of my xlarge crockpot. Add a small amount of chicken broth and some lemon juice or white wine. Put in turkey breast (always get some free ones at Thanksgiving) and cook on low for about 7 hrs or until tender. Have sometimes changed it up with different spice mixes - cajun, Mediterranean (add kalamata, sundried tomatoes, little paste), italian (piccata or marsala). If I add Cajun spices, I also make dirty rice. Sorry I don't have a real recipe - I just came up with this to cook all of the free turkey breasts when we reach a surplus.

UMMM! Sounds good to me, thanks!

You are very welcome - I know it's obvious but forgot to add salt and pepper!

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In another thread we had a spirited discussion about dulce de leche and I posted the recipe I learned from my neighbor, based on part goat milk - the traditional Mexican confection. Significantly different from the cooked sweetened condensed milk stuff.

Downloaded and printed out your recipe for dulce de leche. Great. Thanks.

Now the questions start.

My crockpot holds 8 cups. This is large enough for your recipe, yes?

Can I with impunity halve the recipe and make it in said 8-cup crockpot. There are only two of us and we are not in Moab for all that long. Of course, I could donate the leftover, assuming there is any, to a worthy cause. :smile: DH, Ed, :wub:LOVES dulce de leche, a new eating experience for us.

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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Porthos, Porthos, Porthos :wub: , you go straight to your nearest second hand store and buy yourself a wonderful crockpot for $5 max. I kid you not. Well, maybe $10 if you live in an upscale city.

Toady was my weekly run at thrift stores. Bought a copper mug for my sweet wife. Picked up 18 blue cloth napkins to use in the renaissance faire kitchen I cook in (actually I run it with a lot of good help). While out and about I priced crock pots just for the fun of it since I don't need another one. Here in the Greater San Bernardino, CA area we're looking at $8-$10 for a decently-sized crock pot.

While I was in Costco (I run errands while on my thrift shopping boon) I saw a nifty Rival 6 qt oval Crock Pot with a built-in timer. When your cooking time ends it auto-switches to the "warm" setting to hold your food for you. I think it was $39.95 USD. I can't find it on their web site.

Porthos Potwatcher
The Once and Future Cook

;

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And the current thread popping up about rice pudding reminds me that I used to make rice pudding in my crock pot very frequently. Especially when we were living in warm locales like southern Arizona or Panama and we wanted rice pudding without heating up the kitchen for a couple of hours - which, by the way, is another huge benefit of owning a crock pot in a hot climate. Not only are they perfect for stews, braises, soups, etc., when the weather is cold; they're great for things that take a long time to cook when it's 110 outside and you don't want a big hot oven to heat up your whole kitchen.

Here's a typical recipe for crock pot rice pudding:

Crock Pot Rice Pudding

We don't have one but have been keeping an eye out for a deal. Our stove is gas and I'm not thrilled with its performance at low levels (I'd especially like to try candying some fruit and peels), so the thinking is a crockpot would be really good, but with summer on its way here it's gone out of my head again. But the non-heating aspect was something I never considered. Brilliant! You've renewed my interest for a summer purchase!

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In another thread we had a spirited discussion about dulce de leche and I posted the recipe I learned from my neighbor, based on part goat milk - the traditional Mexican confection. Significantly different from the cooked sweetened condensed milk stuff.

Downloaded and printed out your recipe for dulce de leche. Great. Thanks.

Now the questions start.

My crockpot holds 8 cups. This is large enough for your recipe, yes?

Can I with impunity halve the recipe and make it in said 8-cup crockpot. There are only two of us and we are not in Moab for all that long. Of course, I could donate the leftover, assuming there is any, to a worthy cause. :smile: DH, Ed, :wub:LOVES dulce de leche, a new eating experience for us.

You do have to leave a little headroom in case the milk decides to foam up a bit.

8 cups is 2 quarts or half a gallon and my recipe is just 3 cups for most of the cooking time, until the last cup is heated (use the microwave) and added to the cooked milk.

You can actually cook it all together with good results if you are going to use it right away.

If you do cook the entire quart all together it sometimes will separate after being in the fridge for a couple of weeks - not a big problem.

This is the way I learned to make it and since it works well, I've stuck to it.

I wouldn't halve the recipe. You have to remember that it cooks down to less than half the original volume of liquid when it is finished.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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You do have to leave a little headroom in case the milk decides to foam up a bit.

8 cups is 2 quarts or half a gallon and my recipe is just 3 cups for most of the cooking time, until the last cup is heated (use the microwave) and added to the cooked milk.

You can actually cook it all together with good results if you are going to use it right away.

If you do cook the entire quart all together it sometimes will separate after being in the fridge for a couple of weeks - not a big problem.

This is the way I learned to make it and since it works well, I've stuck to it.

I wouldn't halve the recipe. You have to remember that it cooks down to less than half the original volume of liquid when it is finished.

Thanks for the information. I think I'll get at it immediately. There's a local dairy that produces goat dairy products and I met the owners at the Saturday market.

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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I have two crocks and couldn't live without them, especially in winter. One is always on my counter and is used at least 3 times a week. Preparing food in the morning, and not needing to worry about how to feed the family in the afternoons is bliss when you've had a busy day. It doesn't matter how tired you are, dinner is ready :)

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You do have to leave a little headroom in case the milk decides to foam up a bit.

8 cups is 2 quarts or half a gallon and my recipe is just 3 cups for most of the cooking time, until the last cup is heated (use the microwave) and added to the cooked milk.

You can actually cook it all together with good results if you are going to use it right away.

If you do cook the entire quart all together it sometimes will separate after being in the fridge for a couple of weeks - not a big problem.

This is the way I learned to make it and since it works well, I've stuck to it.

I wouldn't halve the recipe. You have to remember that it cooks down to less than half the original volume of liquid when it is finished.

Thanks for the information. I think I'll get at it immediately. There's a local dairy that produces goat dairy products and I met the owners at the Saturday market.

I looked at the Crock Pot that I use when I prepare this size batch of Dulce de Leche and it is a 2-quart. I use the 4-quart for double or triple the recipe.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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In another thread we had a spirited discussion about dulce de leche and I posted the recipe I learned from my neighbor, based on part goat milk - the traditional Mexican confection. Significantly different from the cooked sweetened condensed milk stuff.

Downloaded and printed out your recipe for dulce de leche. Great. Thanks.

Now the questions start.

My crockpot holds 8 cups. This is large enough for your recipe, yes?

Can I with impunity halve the recipe and make it in said 8-cup crockpot. There are only two of us and we are not in Moab for all that long. Of course, I could donate the leftover, assuming there is any, to a worthy cause. :smile: DH, Ed, :wub:LOVES dulce de leche, a new eating experience for us.

You do have to leave a little headroom in case the milk decides to foam up a bit.

8 cups is 2 quarts or half a gallon and my recipe is just 3 cups for most of the cooking time, until the last cup is heated (use the microwave) and added to the cooked milk.

You can actually cook it all together with good results if you are going to use it right away.

If you do cook the entire quart all together it sometimes will separate after being in the fridge for a couple of weeks - not a big problem.

This is the way I learned to make it and since it works well, I've stuck to it.

I wouldn't halve the recipe. You have to remember that it cooks down to less than half the original volume of liquid when it is finished.

Like you, I also make cajeta in my crock pot. For years, I tried to make it stovetop, and in the oven, and it was just so difficult to get it right. But it's so easy in the crock pot.

This recipe only calls for 4 cups of milk, so if someone doesn't want to make 8 cups, they can try this.

Here's the recipe:

Cajeta (Mexican dulce de leche)

2 C goat's milk

2 C cow's milk

1 C sugar

1 whole vanilla bean, split

1/4 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cornstarch

Combine everything in your crock pot. Stir well. Cook on 'high' for about 10 hours, stirring occasionally, more frequently the last hour, until the cajeta is thick and caramelized. Strain and store the cajeta in the fridge. Keeps for several weeks. Serve at room temp.

Note - you can add a little wine or brandy or rum or other alcoholic beverage toward the end. That makes it cajeta envinada.

(Or, of course, if you want something even easier, you can always buy it at any Mexican market. Coronado is the most widely-available brand. It even comes in squeeze bottles. Squeeze cajeta. Ain't life grand?)

Cajeta

_____________________

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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And so the Cajeta was 'made'. Perhaps it was my crockpot...perhaps it was me. I don't know. After baby-sitting the stuff for about 12 hours I finally gave up and put it in the fridge. Yummy says the DH, but even as it evaporated with the long, long cooking...it never got all that thick. I used half cow's and half goat's milk.

My crockpot is an old Rival, 8 cups, two heat settings only:low & high. That's it. Non-removable liner.

?????

(After the fridge time, the syrup is much thicker, but still not thick enough to put on ice cream happily. What if I cook it again slightly with some corn starch? ????)

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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You do have to leave a little headroom in case the milk decides to foam up a bit.

8 cups is 2 quarts or half a gallon and my recipe is just 3 cups for most of the cooking time, until the last cup is heated (use the microwave) and added to the cooked milk.

You can actually cook it all together with good results if you are going to use it right away.

If you do cook the entire quart all together it sometimes will separate after being in the fridge for a couple of weeks - not a big problem.

This is the way I learned to make it and since it works well, I've stuck to it.

I wouldn't halve the recipe. You have to remember that it cooks down to less than half the original volume of liquid when it is finished.

Would one be able to double the recipe without any problems? I have a larger crockpot (5 1/2 qts, I think), and just 4 cups seems like an awfully small amount for such a large crockpot.

Another question--my crockpot only has high, low, and auto temperatures. Should I just use low instead of medium and just allow that it will take a lot longer to cook down?

ETA--I was thinking if I make a double recipe, I'd start it out on the stove and then transfer it to the crockpot after I've added the water/baking soda mixture. That way it wouldn't take as long to reach 140F. Does that sound like at OK idea? Or a recipe for disaster?

Edited by prasantrin (log)
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The recipe can be doubled or tripled. Just add up the volume of the ingredients allowing for enough head room for the milk to boil up a bit.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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And so the Cajeta was 'made'. Perhaps it was my crockpot...perhaps it was me. I don't know. After baby-sitting the stuff for about 12 hours I finally gave up and put it in the fridge. Yummy says the DH, but even as it evaporated with the long, long cooking...it never got all that thick. I used half cow's and half goat's milk.

My crockpot is an old Rival, 8 cups, two heat settings only:low & high. That's it. Non-removable liner.

?????

(After the fridge time, the syrup is much thicker, but still not thick enough to put on ice cream happily. What if I cook it again slightly with some corn starch? ????)

I missed this when it was first posted.

Just let it cook longer. Don't add corn starch. Not all Crock pots are equal when it comes to temps. Some are hotter, some not so much.

It should turn a dark caramel color and be thick enough to leave a "trail" as the spoon is scraped over the bottom of the pot and should be very thick when it has cooled to room temp. It should, in fact, mound up on the spoon at room temp and slowly collapse.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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That Everhot roaster is a classic, Art Deco design, never used, and the "jewel" of my collection. Manufactured in the late 1930s. Never used and I have the original box.

Isn't it pretty?

That piece is gorgeous! I have most of the art deco Chase electrics, but I've never seen this Everhot roaster before. I do have a three art deco Nesco roasters. One is a small round one and the other is a bit larger and is oval. The third one is something like 18qts and sits on a cart. I love and use all these pieces.

My regular crockpot is one of the Rival ones from the 1970s. It is the unfortunate colour of avocado green, but it is still going strong at 30+ years old. The three things I mainly cook in it now are apple butter, caramelized onions and the red beans for red beans and rice. I do use it for some other things, but it's really a workhorse for those three dishes.

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A couple of years ago, I was using my 2 slow cookers to make up a batch of "stew" for a sick dog. DH was recovering from back surgery and a little "loopy". He somehow managed to bring both cookers crashing to the floor, along with all their greasy, chickeny contents mushed in with the broken glass lids! It was the 2nd biggest mess I've ever had to clean up in my kitchen. (You don't want to know about the biggest mess!) :wacko:

So, I bought this Hamilton Beach slow cooker with 3 interchangeable bowls/liners. I love it! Just this week I used the big bowl for dog stew, the medium bowl for pork fingers and kraut and tonight I'm doing French Dips from half a chuck roast in the small one.

The bowls all nest together and one lid fits all, so it doesn't take up any more cabinet space than my old large Rival one did.

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