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Slow Cooker/Crock Pot: Recipes and Techniques


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Seemingly stupid question. Crock pot on high or low? (Mine only has two settings; it is a big old Rival one, one of my two takes from my grandmother's hosue when she died some 15 years ago.)

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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Linda -- I was concerned about that, too, but I did a cup of them in the 5 qt crock pot and it worked fine.  I did stir it about once an hour.

Richard... Richard... Richard... You were supposed to tell me that it absolutely would not work in the larger pot and that I would have to go get another toy. :laugh:

I saw a 3 or 4 quart in the grocery :blink: the other day. It sure was cute.

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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Anyone else tried cooking grits in a slow cooker?

John Thorne did a bit about grits in a slow cooker recently in Simple Cooking ( I don't remember the issue number but it was within the last year or so and focused on grits and fried eggs.)

From my memory (not to be trusted) it was 5 water to 1 grits, butter,salt, overnight on low. I like the idea of waking up to them.

"Tis no man. Tis a remorseless eating machine."

-Captain McAllister of The Frying Dutchmen, on Homer Simpson

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Interesting, formerly. I can see how that would appeal to John Thorne. I need to subscribe to Simple Cooking. I got John's book of essays on his house a couple of months ago., and I have given a gift subscription to a cooking buddy.

I used the standard 3 to 1 ratio if I recall correctly, but overnight may be better than three or four hours and more water sounds like a good idea in that case.

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  • 1 month later...

I cooked a batch a chili on top of the stove yesterday night (brown the meat in fat, some veggies, some stock, some tomatoes…). Once everything was in the heavy pot ready to be simmering for a while, I transferred the contents to a crock-pot to be cook over night. And here lays my error, I had the setting of the crock-pot in “Keep Warm” instead of “Low”. The chili cooked there for about 8 hours. This morning I noticed my error and tooked the temperature. The stew was about 184 Degrees F. I tasted the chili and it was done, I was actually satisfied with the taste as well.

My question is, should I worry about health safety? When I transferred the contents from the heavy pot to the crock-pot last night, the contents were hot since I have been cooking it on top of the stove. I remember using a spoon to taste the stew and having to wait a couple seconds for it to cool in order to not burnt myself.

If this was a batch just for me, I would not worry too much, but there will probably be 25+ people tasting it . I will have some for dinner tonight, so I guess if I get sick I will know before my wife serves it at her work on Friday, but I was hopping for some input before hand from the forum.

Any thoughts from e-Gullet members would be highly appreciated.

Thanks

Alex

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I personally wouldn't worry at all, I have eaten tons of stuff that has spent multiple hours hanging out at 'keep warm' in the crockpot. I am not a food scientist by any means, but I believe 184 degrees is enough to kill any of the germs that would cause issues anyway.

He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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If you would be closer to Dallas I would tell you to throw it out immediately. I would be right over to take it and dispose of it properly. :biggrin:

Seriously there should not be a problem.

Never trust a skinny chef

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Thanks for the replies. I am glad everybody agrees that the chili should be fine regarding the safety issue.

I guess I could have being concern if everything were thrown to the crock-pot raw, since it could have taking a while for it to reach any high temperature. However, that end product would have not been any good, taste wise, without browning the meat and all.

There are going to be about 20 different chiles (chilis? sp) so hopefully people like my mix of spices.

Let me tell you, I am glad that it is my wife's office and not mine... Can you think what is going to happen there after all those people ate so much chili? :blink::raz:

Alex

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  • 1 month later...

Cookbooks for a slow cooker? Just play around, have fun with it. Make onion confit, toss in a pork butt, a couple cans of kraut, some sausage and spices and let it go, do roasts, do stews and chili, cook comfort food 24/7 !

He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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check out ebay....you can generally find cookbooks on almost anything there...just type in either cookbooks in the search area or you can be more specific by typing in crockpot cookbooks..or you can leae it generalized...but in truth there ar e many recipes you can adapt to a slow cooker...have fun and enjoy

a recipe is merely a suggestion

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However, one thing to be aware of is that many of the slow cooker cookbooks seem to wind up on the bland side of bland. Many of the authors seem to be real wusses about spicy food, and soy sauce seems to be considered an exotic ingredient. Mable Hoffman seems to be particularly guilty in these respects, and she's got many cookbooks out.

That said, one that gets more adventuresome (and more to our taste) is The Slow Cooker Ready & Waiting Cookbook by Rick Rodgers. (Here's an Amazon link.)

Once you've played with your cooker a little, you'll also be able to figure out how to use it for some of your existing recipes. Have fun!

MelissaH

MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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Anything you can braise on the stovetop or in the oven, you can do in a slow cooker. Sometimes better! Besides the aforementioned onion confit, I've used mine to make duck confit, chili, congee, braised lamb shanks, beef stew, pozole, etc. etc. The only time it has been less than great is the most recent: I was braising a duck, totally skinned, cut into pieces (including hacking the bones into pieces with meat on them), and overcooked it by several hours. :blush: Tastes fabulous, but almost completely dissolved the shreds of meat on the bones. :raz:

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Check the little cookbooks at your local market check-out stand or at Wal-Mart, also as the check-out.

Look For Taste of Home's Soups and Slow Cooker recipes.

I picked this up about a month ago as my housekeeper wanted to try some slow cooker recipes and I couldn't find any of my other cookbooks without a time-consuming search.

She wanted to make a potato soup similar to those from her home (in Hungary) but want to try the crockpot method.

This cookbook has a recipe for Potato Chowder that is excellent. Anka was thrilled with the way it turned out. (She made dumplings too.)

She also made Taco Soup when her friends came to visit a couple of weeks ago.

She is going to make another one tomorrow. When she gets back from the market I will let you know which it is.

I read through the book and it packs a lot of recipes into a very small package.

76 recipes on pull-out recipe cards.

"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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Haven't opened it yet, but I just got a copy of Slow Cooker Cooking by Lora Brody, as I saw it recommended in a few places. One suggestion: do a search in this forum for Crock Pot ® or slow cooker and you'll find a TON of discussions and ideas! And of course, let us know if you make something wonderful... :biggrin:

Nullo, thanks for sharing your recipes...I'm going to save those for future use!

Curlz

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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The new Molly Stevens book All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking, comes highly recommended. I bought copies for the kids since I gave them a little Le Creuset earlier this year. I bought one for me but I have only flipped through it so far. Seems a bit more adventurous than some that I have seen. A site friendly link is below.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/039...3/egulletcom-20

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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Well, well, well!

Anyone who snobs you out about using a crockpot is a fool.

We made buffalo stew meat, marianated in red wine, thyme, garlic and pepper, then thrown in with sauteed bacon, onion, mushrooms and garlic. Throw everything including the marinade in and cook on low for 8 hours...WOW! It was unbelievably flavorable and tender...not to mention convenient.

I am sold.

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