Tuesday, 8 November 2011

I 'heart' my slow cooker Part Two!

I just realised that I had left out some of my favourite recipes from my previous post!! So here are some more yummy recipes which I have tried and tested over the years!

Persian Chicken

Chicken Thighs (a lot cheaper than breast and in my opinion a whole lot tastier!!)
a couple of tbsps of seasoned flour
2 tbsp oil
1 large onion diced
2 garlic cloves crushed
Half a tin of tomatoes. Or around 4 ripe tomatoes chopped. (In the art of thrift just use what you have available!)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
6 dates halved and pitted. (I have also used figs in the past...both yum!) You could even use prunes if you like.
2 tbsps Currants (again I have used Sultanas before as they were in my cupboard!)
500ml chicken stock (either use your own from the freezer or dissolve two stock cubes in 500ml boiling water)
2 tsp lemon zest
2tbsp of chopped parsley (I use dried as never seem to have fresh herbs for long in my house!)
- Put the seasoned flour in a freezer/sandwich bag and add chicken thighs. Hold it shut and shake the bag until all the chicken pieces are coated.
- Take the chicken out and heat oil in a frying pan. Brown the chicken on all sides and then place them into the slow cooker.
- Add the onion to the frying pan and cook for two mins, then add the garlic and ground cinnamon and cook on low for 5 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, dates, currants and stock and bring to the boil. When it is boiling add the sauce to the slow cooker pouring over all of the chicken.
- Cook on low for at least 5 hours. In the last hour open the lid and in the lemon zest.
I usually serve this with rice, but its also nice with mash.

Beef in Red Wine Stew OR substitute Wine for Guiness or real Ale. They all work perfectly!!

Diced Beef (1kg will serve about 4. If you're on a budget use brisket or cheaper cuts and bulk out with more veg....just as yummy!!)
3tbsp seasoned flour
1tbsp oil
150g smoky bacon diced (or use lardons....sometimes they're cheaper)
8 peeled shallots halved or the white ends of 8 spring onions (trim off the beardy root bits!)
200g button mushrooms
500ml red wine. Or one/two cans of guinness or one big bottle of real ale.
2tbsp tomato puree
500ml of beef stock (using two stock cubes)
1 bayleaf
1tbsp mixed herbs
- Toss the beef in the flour (use same method as persian chicken). Shake off excess and brown off in the oil (cook in batches so it frys rather than stews!) Then put in slow cooker
- add bacon and cook until browned. Add to the beef in the slow cooker
- add spring onions and mushrooms to the pan (add more oil if needed) until the onions are browned. Remove and add to slow cooker.
- Slowly pour red wine or whatever booze you decide to use into the pan using a wooden spoon to scrape up all the yummy bits in the pan from your meat and veg frying.
- Stir in tom puree and stock and add the bayleaf and herbs. Then add the liquid into the slow cooker over the meat and veg.
- Cook on low for 6-8hours. The beef will be mouthwateringly tender.
Sometimes when i'm on a big budget drive I will only use 250g of beef and bulk out with root veg. Things like swede, turnip and butternut squash and of course carrots all go perfectly with this.
Serve with buttery mash, or any kind of veg. Or just a big chunk of bread!

Minty lamb stew
This is the ultimate quick fix!! So quick and easy!

Lamb (chops....scrag end of neck, shoulder etc etc....use what's cheapest. I find when slowcooked you don't need the expensive cuts)
1-2tbsps of Mint Sauce
1 Pint of gravy
1 onion diced
3 carrots chopped
splash of wine (red or white....I have tried both and they both taste good!)
Bung everything in!! No Precooking is needed as it all tastes fab! Cook on low for 6-8hours
Serve with swede mash. Or roast potatoes or butternut squash or boiled potatoes. Whatever takes your fancy or is in your cupboards!

Pulled Pork

I mentioned this in a previous post. Its ridiculously easy and oh so yummy.
Pork Ribs (After trial and error I find these the best to use)
300ml beef stock
1 jar of bbq sauce (You could make your own, but for this I prefer the american style bbq sauce....they are readily available in all supermarkets) I've even used a heinz bbq squeezy sauce before and it was yummy yums!
- put all ingredients in slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hours
- use a fork to shred the meat off of the bones(discard the bones)
This is an american recipe traditionally served in big white baps and served with coleslaw and crisps.
I usually serve it in baps and serve it with skinny fries and corn on the cob and coleslaw! Its also lovely as a jacket potato filling and will last a couple of days in the fridge.

Easy Lancashire Hotpot

Lamb (again use whatever cuts you like. I usually use shoulder steaks)
4 potatoes, peeled and sliced thickly
6 shallots or baby onions peeled and left whole
1tbsp mixed herbs
2tbsp worcestershire sauce
125ml beef stock
- layer potatoes, herbs and onions at base of slowcooker. Add lamb and pour over stock and worcestershire sauce.
- Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-8hours

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