Showing posts with label crockpots. Show all posts
Showing posts with label crockpots. Show all posts

Sunday, September 28, 2014

slowcooker sausage + apple stuffed acorn squash

I shared a picture of this recipe last week on our Facebook page and received a lot of requests for the recipe.  This is so easy to put together and cooks in about 4 hours on LOW in the slowcooker, so it is a great weekend dinner.  Although, if you have a slowcooker with a timer you could do it while you are away from the house. 


Slowcooker Sausage + Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash
2 acorn squash, halved with seeds removed
1 apple, chopped
1/2 onion, minced
1 stalk of celery, chopped
1 lb of ground sausage
5 sage leaves, chopped
1 egg, beaten
Parmesan, small handful
Salt and Pepper, to taste
1 1/2 c. of chicken broth
Saute apple, onion, and celery in pan until soft.  Let cool a bit and combine with remaining ingredients (except chicken broth).  Stuff squash with mixture. Place in crockpot (I used my largest one so that they would all fit). Pour chicken broth into bottom of crockpot.  Cook on LOW for about 4 hours or until cooked through, Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

march: month of meals

super cute cake topper 

March is almost upon us. And with it, hopefully, Spring. I'm a little ahead of the curve (by like 3 days, but that's good for me) and have the monthly meal plan for March ready to go. My MIL gave me one of those Taste of Home cookbooks so a lot of these are from it. Email me or FB message me if you want recipe from there (*Taste of Home Quick Cooking Annual Recipes 2014). I'm happy to send it to you. This month is always a delicate balance for me....I'm trying to will Spring while staying warm. I also hope that sometime in the month of March I will be able to dig into the ground and get some seeds buried.  Maybe some kale or even radishes.  We shall see. Without further ado...

Slowcooker Corned Beef and Cabbage
Slowcooker Pork Satay*
Slowcooker Pepperoni Pizza Soup*
Cornmeal Dusted Flounder with Black Bean-Corn Salad*
Shrimp and Pineapple Kabobs with Rice*
Creamy Herb Salmon with Rice Pilaf and Greens*
Sweet Chili Salmon with Blackberries and Rice*
10 Minute Macaroni and Cheese
Meatball Pizza Pockets and Salad
Antipasto Braid with Salad*
Reuben Bake (using leftover corned beef)
Greek Fish Fillets with Rice and Peas*
Pizza Burgers* with Fries (this oven fry recipe is my go-to)
Pork Schnitzel and Cabbage*
Slowcooker Italian Shredded Beef Stew*
Chicken Lo Mein
Spaghetti Squash Lasagna Bowls with Salad and Crusty Bread
Loaded Nachos
Slowcooker Veggie Lasagna
Roasted Beef, Mushroom, and Barley Stew
Slowcooker Korean Ribs with Rice and Bok Choy
Slowcooker Lentil and Sausage Stew
Black Beans and Sausage
Roasted Chicken with Mashed Potatoes and Veggies
You can always check out my food boards on Pinterest for ideas and our What's For Dinner Tab, too.

*Taste of Home Quick Cooking Annual Recipes 2014

Monday, February 10, 2014

top 10 {new} crockpot recipes

About a year and half ago, I sent Jenny at DALS an email with my Top Ten Crockpot Recipes for Parents.  Clearly, people were looking for some tried and true crockpot recipes because that post and my Korean Ribs continue to be the most popular reads on this site. It goes to show you that reaching out and sharing is always a good thing. And since I am a crockpot junkie I am always trying new recipes. So, in the spirit of sharing, here are ten more tried and true crockpot recipes. The following have all been winners and have made the "on rotation" list.

spaghetti squash and meatballs ready to go in the crockpot

Here are my ten {new} favorites for parents or novice crockpotters:

Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs (so stupid simple)
Lentil and Sausage Stew (great way to introduce lentils)
Chicken Taco soup (party winner!)
Corn Chowder with Shrimp (Hendrix's fav)
Veggie Lasagna (only time cheese and my crockpot work together)
Holiday Ham (see below)
Franks and Beans (the boys' favorite and my favorite for summer)
Salisbury Steak (a mike favorite and winter keeper)
Black Bean, Barley, and Corn Burritos (great vegetarian options, but adjust seasonings to your tastes)
Banana Bread (yes, bread)


Holiday Ham
After trying a few different crockpot ham recipes I found this way works the best for me.  You'll want to use the largest crockpot and tent foil if the lid does not go on all the way.  This ham makes an appearance at most of our gatherings...from Baptisms to Christmas. It couldn't be easier. 

1 good quality, spiral cut, bone in ham
1 c. Maple Syrup
3/4 cup Brown Sugar,
Pepper, to taste
Place ham in crockpot. Drizzle maple syrup all over.  Sprinkle brown sugar and pepper on top.  Pat into ham.  Pour about 1/2 cup of water into bottom of crockpot.  Cook on low for about 4-5 hours or until heated through.  Do not over cook.  Enjoy.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

february: month of meals

if you do nothing else this month, at least enjoy some hot cocoa.

I'm back to my monthly meal plan.  Albeit, a few days late.  I really like having a plan every month and doing one giant trip.  I still have to run to the store every week or so for things like milk and fresh fruit, but the monthly thing works for us.  I should say that Mike runs to the store with me which helps a lot when it comes to bagging the groceries and unloading the car.  Also, he can pick out all the snacks he wants.  This month the groceries will run us about $400 dollars with all of our shopping done at Aldi and Fareway. (Have you checked out Aldi's new organic line? The salsa is amazing.  Try it!) So here is our meal plan for the month, including snacks that I like to make and keep in the fridge...

Black Eyed Peas with Leeks and Chicken Sausages
Fish BLTs with Fries
Spanish Meatloaf with Roasted Veggies and Cheesy Sweet Potatoes
Stuffed Steak with Warm Wilted Kale and Roasted Potato Salad (date night IN)
Crockpot Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs
Pan Roasted Flounder with Chopped Winter Salad
Magic Macaroni & Cheese
Pasta Carbonara with Peas
Crockpot Paella
Crockpot Venison Greek Wraps
Steak with Mushroom Sauce and Cauliflower Puree (Valentine's Day)
Crockpot Chili
Crockpot Stuffed Peppers
Crockpot Maple and Mustard Pot Roast with Roasted Veggies and Grits
Mustard Glazed Salmon with Lentils
Crockpot BBQ Chicken Pulled Sammies with Coleslaw (I dump BBQ sauce and chicken in the crockpot)
Homemade Chicken Nuggets with Mango Dipping Sauce and Salad
Runza Casserole
Hendrix's Great Grandma's Meatballs (similiar to DALS' porcupine meatballs)
Mongolian Tofu Stirfry

{Snacks | Big Batch Salads}
Country Pate'
Cold Noodle Salad
Lentil and Sweet Potato Salad
Dark Chocolate & Trail Mix Bites
On Fridays, we have Family Movie Night which means we usually make pizza or get take-out so I don't include those on my meal plan. I let the boys decide the day of what they want, but I always have pizza dough or frozen pizzas in the fridge.  A lot of these recipes are new to me so I am anxious to give them a try.  Hope this month gives you time to sit with your family and share a meal.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

slowcooker lentil & sausage stew | pinterest test

perfect baby eating perfect baby food. :)

I came across this recipe on Pinterest last weekend.  I had all the ingredients, so I decided to give it a whirl.  It came out delicious and everyone liked it.  Especially Violet Alice.  Lentils are the perfect baby food. I added garlic and used the entire package (16 oz.) of Italian sausage. This does not and could not cook all day, unless you have a crockpot with a timer.  So save this for a day you can be home to throw it together later in the afternoon.
Slowcooker Lentil and Sausage Stew
1 package of Italian sausage, cut up
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
2 c. of beef broth
1 can (14.5 oz.0 of diced tomatoes
3 carrots, chopped
1 c. of lentils
2 large handfuls of spinach
Combine everything but the spinach in the crockpot.  Cook on high for 3 hrs or low for 5 hours.  A 1/2 before done, add spinach.  Cook until spinach is wilted and lentils are tender.  Enjoy! (We ate ours with cornbread. Delicious!)

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Chicken Taco Soup + Six Months

last night, we had our first annual halloween party.  it was so fun to see the kiddos in their halloween costumes and have our first hurrah as a family of four (even if violet was ms. crabbypants). violet alice will be six months this friday and i haven't even written about her, yet.  this has been the fastest six months of my life. soon i will share more about her, hendrix's love for her, my fascination with having a daughter, and all the wonderful changes our family has undergone.  to the readers that kept checking in...thanks for checking in and waiting while i got used to two kids. xo!
i made this soup yesterday and it turned out to be quite a hit with our guests. it's super simple and delicious.  also, the smore candy you see all over pinterest?? make it. now. so good.

chicken taco soup
2 - 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4 c. chicken broth
1/2 onion, chopped
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 can of black beans, drained & rinsed
1/2 bag of frozen corn
1/2 T cumin
1 t. minced garlic
salt & pepper to taste
combine ingredients in crockpot.  cook on low 8 - 10 hours.  shred chicken before serving.  serve with avocado, shredded cheddar, cilantro, limes, green onion, tortilla chips, and/or sour cream.

sneak peek of the cutest baby

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

march: month of meals

printable found here

i have no idea what happened to the month of february.  all i know is that is almost over, i only have 10 weeks left of this pregnancy, and it's time to go to the grocery store again. february was weird in the dinner department.  i had a lot more leftovers then i thought i would and was lazy (think frozen pizzas and ravioli) more than normal. also, we had a few family dinners and events that i forgot to factor into my planning. i am growing a human, so that is my excuse.  so some recipes did not get made and that is why you see them on this month's meal plan, as well.  looks like my grocery bill will be quite cheap this month! speaking of, in case you missed it, the lincoln journal star interviewed me about my grocery shopping habits.  you can read the article here.

1. stout corned beef with roasted potatoes, cabbage, and carrots (st. patty's day)
2. slowcooker potato soup (lenten dinner)
3. chicken and sausage pot pies
4. fish sandwiches with sweet potato fries + coleslaw (lenten dinner)
5. spinach + shroom lasagna (lenten dinner)
6. beef + scallion skewers with bok choy
7. crockpot salisbury steak with potatoes and veggies
8. spaghetti + meatballs with salad and garlic bread (hendrix's birthday dinner)
9. crockpot asian pork + mushrooms
10. crockpot stuffed peppers
11. tortellini soup (lenten dinner)
12. white beans with spinach, shrimp + feta (lenten dinner)
13. baked sausages + latkes
14. parmesan chicken cutlets with salad
15. rueben bake (use leftover corned beef)
16. yogurt marinated chicken + creamy greek sauce
17. chicken enchilada puffs
18. steak salad
19. sloppy joes with zuke fries
20. meatball subs with salad (use leftover meatballs)
21. grilled pork tenderloin with black bean salsa
22. vension roast with roasted veggies + mashed potatoes
23. macaroni + cheese 

noodle soup (ramen noodles without the gross flavor packet amped up with shredded veggies)
greek couscous salad (couscous, tomato, cukes, scallions, feta, olive oil, and lemon)
cabbage, apple, + walnut salad

breakfast tacos
granola + yogurt

cut veggies
goldfish crackers

* if there is no link that is because i either just make it up or figure it is basic enough for everyone to figure out (i.e. spaghetti + meatballs)
** for more dinner ideas or monthly meal plans, check out the what's for dinner page.
i'll (hopefully) be back later this month to talk about hendrix's john deere birthday party, easter dessert ideas, and how our cooking class at the heart ministry center goes next week.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

february: month of meals

i'm sticking with my monthly meal planning.  it seems to really work for us and is super awesome on the days when i have no desire to cook.  it's much easier to throw something together when you already have a stocked kitchen and plan.  since, the baby is due at the beginning of may i have started working on my postpartum meal plan.  you know since when we brought hendrix home we had nothing to eat.  this time will be different, though, since we don't really have air conditioning in the kitchen and it can get quite warm already in may and june i am focusing on premade meals that don't require the oven.  you can check out some of my ideas on my pinterest board.  this month i am also testing or retesting a lot of these recipes to see how quick they really are, as well as, testing out some of the quick, premade freezer meals from costco and trader joe's that other folks have suggested.
1. crockpot shrimp + bacon corn chowder
2. italian chicken bake
3. spaghetti with costco meatballs
4. crockpot beef + broccoli
5. beef + scallion skewers with bok choy
6. zuppa toscana soup
7. crockpot asian pork + mushrooms
8. rueben bake
9. roasted veggie tacos
10. sour cream chicken enchiladas
11. crockpot salisbury steak with potatoes & veggies
12. stromboli
13. crockpot frank + beans with slaw
14. philly cheesesteak sandwiches on bretzel rolls
15. pot pies
16. pork schintzel with sour cream mashed potatoes and sweet + sour cabbage
17. beef + snow peas
18. fajitas
19. chicken cutlets with salad
20. sausage + latkes
21. sloppy joes
22. greek burgers with greek cous cous salad
23. mini meatloaves with taters and veggies
24. crockpot chili
25. crockpot stuffed peppers

chicken wrap
creamy kale salad
black bean + quinoa salad
salad with melty goat cheese crouton

cut veggies
bread with nut butter
bran muffins

Saturday, December 1, 2012

a month of meals

i've either entered the nesting phase or have WAY too much time on my hands.  however, i have read on quite a few blogs lately and talked with a few friends...apparently planning meals out and doing the shopping for a month of dinners is a money saver/time saver.  i already spend very little on groceries, but lately we have been going over our budget.  mostly, because with this pregnancy comes pregnancy brain, morning sickness, and "ohmygodiamsotired i can't even make a sandwich". it all leads to eating out more and/or prepackaged dinners bought at the last minute. both not all that delicious.
also, i think by not really planning out snacks and lunches and times that i can't bear to prepare food, i end up leaving myself with a kitchen with no back up plan.  supermom isn't making as many appearances these days. hence, the frozen pizza and ravioli on my grocery list.
so....i went down the road of crazy and planned a month of meals. feel free to poach any or all of these for your own planning purposes.
a few things... this plan took me about an hour to do.  i stuck with mostly staple dinners and threw a couple of new recipes in there. i typically have a pretty well stocked pantry so i just needed to replace a few items.  it may vary based on your pantry. the meat, frozen food, and pantry items will be purchased once this month.  some of the produce that keeps well, like carrots, potatoes, onions, and sugar snap peas, will be purchased once. the same with the dairy...some like shredded cheese i can buy once and freeze or some like buttermilk have a long shelf life. otherwise, i will (of course) be making small, short trips to the store weekly based on what perishables i need to stock up on. or telling mike to do it. finally, i  did 26 dinners instead of 31 to allow room for leftovers and the holidays.  also, i will be picking 4 - 6 dinners from the list weekly to make instead of planning every single night of the month. the bulk of my shopping is done at costco, aldi, and fareway.

here is the meal plan:

cut veggies + dip (ranch seasoning with yogurt)
quick bread gone healthy (check pinterest)
granola + yogurt
bean dip
hard boiled eggs
cottage cheese
smoothies (i just buy a bunch of cheap frozen fruit and wing it)
granola bars ( we love these nature valley brand protein bars they sell at costco)
goldfish crackers (i'm succumbing)

grilled cheese
noodles or cheese ravioli

whole wheat pancakes
french toast
eggs + breakfast meat
biscuits + gravy (clearly reserved for the weekend. i'm not that much of a fatty.)

1. crockpot chile colorado burritos with rice
2. chili rellano casserole
3. lasagna with salad
4. crockpot chili
5. crockpot beef stroganoff with salad
6. beef satay with ramen in peanut ginger sauce
7. baked sausages with apples, onions, and potatoes
8. italian sausage meatball sandwiches with salad
9. sloppy joes with baked fries and cut veggies
10. baked penne with salad
11. crockpot stuffed peppers with mashed potatoes
12. sausage, bean, and kale stew
13. (venison) steak salad with tomatoes, onion, and bleu cheese
14. tuna noodle casserole with salad
15. venison roast with mashed potatoes and roasted carrots
16. shepard's pie (with leftover roast & potatoes from #15)
17. crockpot korean ribs with rice and braised cabbage
18. baked sausages with colcannon + applesauce (use cabbage from #17 for colcannon)
19. greek burgers with pita, cukes, tomatoes, feta, and onion
20. sausages with latkes + applesauce
21. braised short ribs with polenta and roasted veg (christmas dinner?)
22. venison enchiladas with rice
23. crockpot chili
24. baked fried chicken drumsticks with rainbow salad
25. macaroni + cheese
26. black eyed peas with leeks and kielbasa and cornbread (new years eve)

so far, i have spent about $100 - 150 less than i typically would for the whole month. we shall see how the rest of the month goes...i will give updates.  also, let me know if you all try this or already do it.  i'd love to hear your thoughts.  so far, i really like having a fully stocked kitchen with all the ingredients to make over half of these meals. now if only we could get a massive snow storm...
check out january's month of meals plan and to read more about what i learned by planning dinner out for a whole month!

Monday, November 12, 2012

getting in the groove

weeks 13 and 14 of this pregnancy were a bit rough as far as the morning sickness goes...i've had morning sickness since about 5 weeks so i'm kind of over it.  plus, i'm now in this weird morning sickness + nesting phase which leads to a lot of unfinished projects, a house that looks like a bomb hit, and a grumpy mommy at the end of the day.  i also have not done much cooking or meal planning for the past two months.  see the empty slots on our what's for dinner page for proof.  i'm not promising that i'll be getting back to that anytime soon, either.  however, i did more cooking and prep this past week/weekend then i have in a long time.  yesterday i cut up a bunch of fruit for the week, hard boiled a dozen eggs for snack times, made granola for my morning yogurt, made a pot of black eyed peas (i froze some and saved some for my favorite 101 cookbooks recipe), doubled our dinner so that i could put some in the freezer, and made these cookies with hendrix.  oh, and i made breakfast instead of making mike take us out. for the first time, in a long time i feel like i have a head start on this week's meals and snacks.  this pregnancy has me craving protein like crazy and eating small meals throughout the day does better for me.  so, if i have no quick snacks then bad things happen and i get sick. hopefully, this week is a little better and my prepping helps out.

here's what we're having for dinner this week...

chile colorado burritos with yellow rice and pineapple
tartiflette with green salad
black eyed peas with leeks (adding beef kielbasa for mike)
venison chops with mashed potatoes and sauteed collards with mushrooms
mushroom meatloaf with roasted brussel sprouts and cheddar squash muffins

{check out amy's meatless mondays for great ideas or a whole month of meatless mondays.}

if you are in the omaha metro area and are wanting to help make thanksgiving special for folks in need then please consider joining the dessert drive that the heart ministry is hosting this week.

if you'd like to help the folks and small businesses in NYC that were affected by sandy then check this site out.

Monday, November 5, 2012

slow cooker cabbage rolls

'tis the time of year for the cabbage roll.  it is pretty damp and cold here this morning so i thought these cabbage rolls would be perfect for dinner.  they are one of mike's favorites and hendrix needs to go to cabbage eaters anonymous.  seriously.  he asked for a bowl of cabbage for breakfast.  not a bad thing, i guess. did you know cabbage is high in vitamin K and C? so, you's perfect for the cold & flu season.  i'll be honest.  i, too, love cabbage but the idea of cabbage rolls grossed me out.  mike leans towards "old fashioned", farmer food and sometimes it's gross.  he ordered cabbage rolls once at a small town diner and couldn't stop talking about them so i decided to make them.  turns out.  he's right.  they are delicious.  we usually eat them with mashed potatoes. for non meat eaters, like hendrix, the meat & rice can easily be replaced with quinoa, shredded veggies like carrots or zucchini, some beans for extra protein and the proceed as directed .  here's the traditional recipe...
cabbage rolls
1 small head of green cabbage, you need the outer leaves
1 lb. of ground meat
1 small onion, very finely chopped
3-4 dashed of Worcestershire sauce
1/2 c. of quick cooking rice
1 large can of tomato juice
in a bowl, combine meat, onion, Worcestershire sauce, rice, and 3/4 cup of tomato juice.  carefully peel 5-8 cabbage leaves from the head, depending on the size of your cabbage leaves, then make an inverted “V” in the base of each leaf to remove the steam. divide mixture and using the greens, roll into “burritos”. place rolls in crock pot.  at this point, i usually shred a bunch of the leftover cabbage and place on top.  pour tomato juice on top, covering rolls, and cook on low for about 6 hours.  serve rolls with mashed potatoes and "sauce" from the crock pot. 

Friday, November 2, 2012

mike's chili...vegged out

it's been quiet around here, i know.  halloween and life got the better of me.  ha!  we had a wonderful halloween with my brother and his family.  i hope you all did, too.  for those of you on the east coast, i hope life gets back to normal sooner than later. xo!
in the meantime, here's a recipe from the top ten slow cooker recipes that i have "vegged out" for those of you that were wanting less meat-focused slow cooker meals.  also, here's the list of my favorite slow cooker vegetarian meals.  mike, my husband, is a big meat eater and our son is it can make slow cooker cooking interesting.  sometimes if i am making meat stuffed peppers or cabbage rolls, i just stuff one or two with a grain, bean, and veg mixture for the kid & me.  things like chili can be a little tougher, though.  so if i am sure hendrix is not going to just eat the beans or i feel like we have been lacking on the veg consumption then i just add some veggies and cut the meat.  mike usually doesn't notice.
mike's favorite chili - vegged out
1/2-3/4 lb of ground meat, browned
1 onion, chopped
1 T. minced garlic
2 cans of kidney beans, rinsed
1 can of diced tomatoes
1 can of tomato soup + 1 can of water (if too dry looking)
1/4 c. of chili powder
2 T. cumin
1 handful of shredded carrots or zucchini
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 small bunch of kale or spinach, chopped very fine
combine everything but the greens in the crock pot and cook on low for 6-8 hours.  before serving, turn crock pot to high and add greens.  cook until wilted.  serve with your favorite chili toppings. 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

rainbow soup

garden tomatoes from earlier this year.  now my garden looks like the apocalypse hit .

when i posted the top ten slow cooker meals, i heard from a lot of new mommas and soon to be new mommas.  (remind to tell you all about the time i came home with a new baby and no food in the house. it was my first and i apparently thought i was going have time to cook.)  this recipe is for you's easy to make, freezes well, can be made in the slow cooker or on the stove top, is super healthy for growing babies in the belly, super great for recovering new mommies, and if you use a little clever marketing...a toddler might like it.  hendrix calls this rainbow soup and loves it.  oh, it's pretty darn cheap to make too! i posted about it a few years ago, but i figured it was worth sharing again. it's basically a very versatile minestrone recipe.  feel free to add some cooked, sliced italian sausage if you like. always add parmesan cheese. xo!
i love this twist on the traditional minestrone. it is so colorful, versatile, and delicious! don't have butternut squash? use potato. or sweet potatoes.  don't like yellow squash? use green beans or zucchini. you can use kale or spinach instead of cabbage, too. cannellini beans, pinto beans or chickpeas would work in place of the kidney beans, as well. get creative!  this works especially well if you froze any of your garden's bounty earlier this year. 

anna's minestrone
3 T. olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 -2 celery stalks, chopped
1/4 t. red pepper flakes
1 t. minced fresh rosemary or 1/4 t. dried
coarse salt and pepper, to taste
1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes, drained (or fresh, chopped)
1/2 butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and chopped
1/2 lb. shredded green cabbage
1 can (15 oz.) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 c. yellow squash, chopped
1 c. green peas, frozen
1 minced garlic clove

7 c. water
shredded parmesan for serving

STOVETOP: in large pot, heat oil over medium - add onion, carrots, celery, red pepper flakes, rosemary, s&p (to taste) - cook until onion begins to turn golden (5-8 mins.) - add tomatoes, cook 1 minute - add butternut squash, cabbage, beans, and 7 c. water - bring to a boil  - reduce to a simmer and cook until all veggies are tender (15 minutes) - stir in peas and cook 5-10 minutes - season with s&p, stir in garlic - serve with parmesan on top - enjoy!
SLOW COOKER: omit olive oil.  combine everything BUT greens and peas.  cook on low for 6-8 hours.  before serving, turn to high and add greens and peas.  cook until greens are wilted. serve with parmesan on top - enjoy!

Friday, October 19, 2012

{semi} vegetarian slow cooker meals

as promised, here are some {semi} vegetarian options for the slow cooker and don't forget about the stuffed black bean peppers on the top ten slow cooker recipes for parents file. i'll come back next week with some easy variations on the meat heavy slow cooker recipes i have already shared.  this week has been a little crazy with preschool field trips, volunteering, and now my poor MIL broke her hip.  please send her lots of good vibes today.  her surgery is later today.  however, i do want to say THANK YOU to all of you nice folks who left wonderful comments, started to follow this blog, and shared the top 10 file. it really made my week.  of course, thanks to JENNY OF DALS, too.

my favorite potato soup

vegetable + chickpea curry (i have not made this yet, but my friend does and i eat it.  so good!!)

eggplant stew (tips: i do not use porcini shrooms.  i use portabello because i can just chop and throw them in the slow cooker.  also, i don't precook my onion because i am not making extra dirty dishes. finally, i throw in some spinach towards the end of cooking. )

black bean enchiladas (turns out more like a casserole, but delicious)

refried beans (fricking brilliant and can be frozen.  thanks to andrea for pointing these out to me.)

white bean +  collard stew (so fricking good with the sausage, but you can easily omit or add in a "healthier" sausage")

Monday, October 15, 2012

top 10 slow cooker recipes for parents

i've been doing this thing for awhile now.  when folks have a new baby, or when i remember to do it, i send them a word document of my top 10 slow cooker recipes.  these are the recipes that i mostly have memorized and often make at least once a week. as many of you know, i fricking love the crockpot.  sure, i love my dutch oven and braising, but when i was a new mom, being able to throw dinner in the crockpot in the morning was a godsend around 5pm later that day. mornings were the only time i could get a little household work done and they still the afternoon i am usually so tired all i want is a latte and a nap. however, i have since figured out that all of us, parents or not, could benefit from the glory of the crockpot.  so, if you would like to fall in love with the crockpot this fall and winter...go here to get the top ten slow cooker recipes. check out one of my favorite blogs of all time, dinner a love story, and see what jenny has to say about the korean ribs she made from my top 10 list.  she's pretty awesome in the kitchen so i am sure she found a way to make these even more killer.

Friday, August 24, 2012

GSW {menu plan} :: thirteen

elegant dinner at our house

1. grilled chicken with avocado & grilled corn salad

2. pork ragu over noodles serve with green salad topped with apples, almonds, and bleu cheese tossed in a simple vinaigrette {weekend dinner alert!}

3. salmon with chickpea, feta, and parsley salad {salad keeps well in fridge for lunches or snack time}

4. grilled pork tenderloin with peaches

5.  black bean stuffed peppers

going to a party? bring dessert and a hostess gift...
fruit crisp + place mats

put aside cleaning your house and freeze some tomatoes...
how to freeze tomatoes
we'll be finishing our {play}barn this weekend and hoping for rain.  thankfully, our friend, tony, is coming to help and his daughter will be here to play with hendrix.
if you are looking for something to do this weekend in the omaha metro, try...millard days, shopping the furniture sale at oh darling!, dundee day on saturday, take a road trip to the nebraska state fair, or go to the world O! water festival at chalco hills on saturday.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

GSW menu :: twelve

if hendrix can make dinner. so can you.

it's thursday! which means that it is one more day until friday and the weekend! it also means it is time for next week's menu plan.  this weather is making me want to give mother nature a big ol' wet one.  right on the lips.  if only she'd send {more} rain...
onto the menu.  we're going to still celebrate summer's bounty, but we're going to add some fall flavors, too.  because why not?  some kids are already in school and this summer was one giant heat wave. here it goes...

1. shrimp tacos with spiced peach jam
2. slow cooker jambalaya
3. eggplant stuffed with couscous + pine nuts (sub other nuts if you like)
4.  chicken, butternut squash, and quinoa stew (weekend dinner alert!)
5. quick miso glazed salmon with your freshest veggies on the side

make a pie because the weather is nice....

salad for lunches...

herb garden going a little too crazy? start freezing!
how to freeze herbs

kids already back in school and you are frazzled?
top 10 quick {DALS} weeknight dinners

Thursday, August 9, 2012

GSW menu plan :: eleven

tomato, corn, + basil salad and cucumber salad

happy thursday!  it rained and is so cool this morning...we are loving it!!  last week, there was no menu plan, but we are back.  i figured you had leftovers. ha! also, i got too busy.  to find more dinner ideas and the other {garden says what?} menu plans go to our what's for dinner page.  in zone 5, we are still celebrating all of summer's bounty and there is a huge variety to pick from, but with the constant sunny, dry, and hot weather i am a little sick of it.  hence, the casserole and summer stews on this week's menu plan.  let's get started.

1. chicken, sausage, + corn summer stew
2. fish BLTs with avocado and a summer salad of your choice
3. chili relleno casserole
4. slow cooker eggplant + chickpea stew
5. caprese tart (for a big meat eater...serve some grilled italian sausages on the side)

preserve your tomatoes.  an easy and delicious way (yields 6 pints)...
tomato + basil simmer sauce

plan ahead and make your own yogurt to go pouches....
homemade gogurt

Friday, May 18, 2012

meat + potato + greens = four

last week, i made a (1) venison roast in the crockpot and served it with smashed potatoes and collards.  needless to say, it was delicious and yielded some leftovers.  i love leftovers.  mike hates them.  so i have to get quite inventive.  folks, i present you with my genius....

2.  fried or poached eggs topped with havarti and served over warmed up greens with a side of toast.

3. beef {venison} + cheddar sandwiches with horseradish served with a herby salad.

4.  kale + potato cakes* with rouille served with italian sausages and salad.

recipe for the collards...
drunken collards (thanks, amy!!)
fry 4 slices of bacon in a pan until crispy, add 1/2 finely chopped onion and a handful of chopped portobella mushrooms.  cook until soft, stir in garlic and let sit for one minute. add chopped collards.  add olive oil, if necessary.  saute until just wilted.  splash a shot of whiskey in the pan and stir around. serve warm and enjoy!!

* i just added wilted kale to my mashed potatoes which were already seasoned and ready to go.  i did add some breadcrumbs, as well, to help the cakes hold together in the pan more. also, i made my rouille with mayo, ketchup, chili powder, chopped garlic, fresh parsley, and cayenne pepper.
in other news:
we are done planting!! bbq + a movie to celebrate.
i have a ton on tarragon, oregano, collards, kale, and butter crunch lettuce.  its yours if you want it.
my friend, bryce, told me to start this.
too hot to cook? here's what to do.
i need to scrub my house.
goodbye & good weekend!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

potato soup

this soup recipe is easy and much healthier than traditional potato soup.  best part? it goes in the slow cooker, of course!!  we had it last night with corned beef sandwiches.  perfect for this rainy weather we are having.

slow cooker potato soup
6 c. chicken or veg broth
4 carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 onion, chopped
4-6 yukon gold or red potatoes, sliced into 1" rounds (i used 6 med. yukon golds)
2 large handfuls of spinach (or other greens)
1 c. skim milk
combine all ingredients except greens and milk in slow cooker.  cook on high for 5 hours or low for 8.  vegetables will be tender when done.  before serving add greens and milk, turn to warm.  serve with grated cheese, if you like. 
{if freezing: do not add milk until right before you serve}