Tag Archives: pot roast

It Cooks While I Sleep…

 I’ve always loved cooking…but I have a secret to admit: I have never been great with the crockpot! I know, I know. It’s supposed to be the simplest way to cook ever, but I seem to fail with this method. I either cook it too long or add too much liquid or it doesn’t get all the way done…. It’s a curse!

But desperate times call for desperate measures. And I am in a season of life where there isn’t much time for meal prep between when I get home from work and when Kyle goes down for bed…and we both need to eat sometime in there. And then there’s the part about kids waking up in the middle of the night…especially (it seems) when you’re already at your tiredest. So, I’m taking the plunge and attempting to cook with the crockpot! I even started a Pinterest board just for crockpot recipe ideas: Crockpot Meals (aka Working Mama Nom-Noms!).

Thankfully, I’ve stumbled across a few keepers (which I’ve modified or merged a couple of recipes together).

The Roast: 5 red potatoes (quartered), 1 small bag baby carrots, 1 onion (peeled and cut into 8), 3 cloves garlic (peeled and minced), 1 box beef broth over veggies, salt-pepper-cornstarch rubbed on the 2 pound roast and seared for 1-2 minutes on each side, then topped with fresh rosemary, basil, parsley, and sage, 1-2 Tbsp. each of honey, soy sauce, and worchestershire sauce. 10 hr. on low.

The roast I made for a friend who’s had sick kids and been discouraged recently, and I literally prayed over the crockpot! (Maybe that’s the real secret.) The recipient commented: “Well my plain ol roast will never taste the same. Delicious!” Great. Now I want pot roast. :/

Peaches ‘n’ Cream Steel Cut Oats: 1 small bag frozen peaches, 1/4-1/2 c. brown sugar,
Pinch salt, 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 c. steel cut oats, 4 c. whole milk.
Do not stir; cook on low for 8-9 hr. in slow cooker. Top with coconut butter or cream and a drizzle of maple syrup or fresh berries.

Breakfast Casserole: 1/2 bag frozen hashbrowns (so 15 oz.), 8 oz. block pepper jack cheese (shredded), 8 oz. breakfast sausage (cooked and crumbled). Sprayed crockpot with oil, then mixed the above ingredients in crockpot. This basically filled my small/med crockpot…but…Then I whisked the following together and dumped it over the top and it filled in all the nooks and crannies…12 eggs, 1 c. milk, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. pepper, fresh basil, rosemary, and sage (torn by hand and tossed in). Covered on low for 8 hrs.

Both breakfast dishes were super simple (though they made 3x the amount we need, but at least there’s leftovers). And Kyle loved it all too! They all turned out good enough to repeat! And I am very thankful!

What are your favorite crockpot recipes?

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Recipe: Harvest Lamb Roast

I adapted this from two recipes in my Simply Organic cookbook tonight. I would say this recipe serves 6-8. If you used a leaner cut of meat, you could probably serve 8-10 people, thought I would double the vegetables for that many servings.

The Finished Product

The first recipe inspiration came from “Harvest Pot Roast” on page 143. The original recipe is meant to be cooked all day or overnight in a slow cooker. This is where I got the veggie and sauce idea. It recommends a 3 pound chuck roast, salt and pepper, 1 large onion, 2 carrots, 12 oz. mushrooms, 4 garlic cloves, 14.5 oz. can of diced tomatoes, and for the sauce: 1 cup ketchup, 2 Tbsp. dijon mustard, 2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce.

The second recipe inspiration came from “Boneless Leg of Lamb with Horseradish-Mint Yogurt and Dried Cranberries” on page 144. I have not made the yogurt sauce or cranberries yet, since I used a different sauce, but it does sound good. This recipe called for the juice of 1 lemon, 3 Tbsp. olive oil, 5 garlic cloves, 3 Tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary, salt, pepper, a 5 to 6 lb. butterflied leg of lamb. For the sauce, it recommends 2/3 cup whole milk yogurt, 2 Tbsp. grated red onion, 3 Tbsp. finely grated fresh horseradish or 1 Tbsp. prepared horseradish, and 3 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh mint. Then it serves it with 2/3 c. dried cranberries that have been reconstituted in 1 cup ruby port and spiced with 1/2 tsp. cinnamon and 2 Tbsp. brown sugar. It sounds like an interesting combination that I look forward to trying someday. I borrowed the rosemary and oil from this recipe and followed the roasting instructions.

Here’s what I did:

Preheated oven to 450F.

In a large, glazed, stoneware casserole dish, I placed the following ingredients:

  • 2 small onions, coarsely chopped
  • 1 red pepper, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • 10 button mushrooms
  • 1 can Muir Glen stewed tomatoes (I reserved the juice for the sauce)
  • 1 1/2 c. baby carrots
  • a drizzle of oil, so the veggies wouldn’t stick to the pan

Then I sprinkled my 3 lb. lamb shoulder with about 1 tsp. of salt and 1/2 tsp. of black pepper, making sure to get it on all sides. I placed the lamb on top of the veggies in the casserole dish.

For the sauce, I mixed the following ingredients:

  • juice reserved from can of stewed tomatoes
  • 1/2 c. ketchup (I used Hunt’s All Natural and ran out after 1/2 c., but it turned out fine)
  • 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard (I used Emeril’s)
  • 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire (it was all I had)
  • 1 Tbsp. minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. dried rosemary

I rubbed this mixture over the lamb, and placed the whole dish in the 450F oven for 20 minutes.

Then I reduced the temperature to 350F and continued roasting for 2 hours, turning every 30 minutes. The recipe said to let the meat rest for 15 minutes after removing it from the oven before slicing, so I decided to do a little photo shoot. The shoulder is one of the fattier cuts of meat (and also one of the cheapest; I got this one at Whole Foods on sale for $5/lb.). I probably did not need to add oil to the veggies, but it was fine. I left the oily juice in the bottom of the dish, placed the meat in the center of my serving plate, and surrounded it with the gloriously roasted vegetables!

This was a delicious blend of flavors! I would definitely do this again. Bryan and I both really enjoyed taste-testing this tonight. It will make a great lunch tomorrow. He deserves it too: he’s been working some really long hours and I want to make sure he knows I appreciate that.