My toughest critics

My toughest critics

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Shepherd's pie

Veggies, starch and protein all on one crock....WINNER WINNER!  This was something I have been thinking about for a while.  I have a great recipe for shepherd's pie in the oven and I have seen several for the slow cooker and I combined all of these to come up with what I feel is just the right combination.  It was wonderful on this chilly fall day and is a balanced meal all in one pot.  .

1.5 lbs of ground meat.  I used organic lean beef but you could use turkey or chicken if you want.
1 onion diced
1 small can tomato paste
2 tbs garlic
2 tbs paprika
1 tbs salt
1 tbs pepper
4 cups veggies...fresh frozen or a mix.  I used what was in my freezer and garden.  squash, carrots, corn, peas, broccoli, zucchini.  Make sure they are chopped into small pieces
5 large potatoes.  I used organic Yukon gold
1.5 cups broth (can use any kind) I used veggie.
1/4 cup milk
2 tbs butter
1 cup shredded cheddar

First brown the onions for a few minutes and add ground meat, garlic, 1 tbs paprika, 1 tbs salt, 1 tbs pepper.  You can add more or less seasoning depending on how spicy you like your meat.  Drain fat.  Add small can of tomato paste.  Mix thoroughly. Spray crock and spread meat in bottom of crock.   Add veggies on top of meat.  Pour broth over veggies.  Add cheese on top of veggies. 
Make mashed potatoes.  You can do it the old fashioned way or what I did was wash them, poke them with a fork, microwave for 12 minutes or until skin becomes a little wrinkled.  Pull skins off, add milk and butter and mash.  Add mashed potatoes on top of crock, spread evenly so the entire top looks like it was iced with potatoes.  Sprinkle with 1tbs of paprika.  Cook on low for 5 hours or high for 3.  Enjoy!

Spray crock and place beef mixture on the bottom.   

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Beef Stew #2

So I have made one beef stew before in the crock (see sidebar under beef for recipe) with wine and it was delish but I wanted to try something new.  This was also equally fantastic and easy. 

 Here are the ingredients:
  About 20 carrots
 1 beef stew seasoning packet
2 potatoes cubed not peeled
1/2 onion
1 2-3 lb beef roast...I used English cut.  cut into chunks.
1 cup beef broth*take note of below
1 large jar of stewed tomatoes. (I canned these myself from the garden and added celery and green pepper) add with juice.  You can find large cans of Italian stewed tomatoes if you do not make your own.  Just add some celery and peppers (a few stalks and maybe one small green pepper chopped) If your tomatoes do not have a lot of liquid use more beef broth.

I put all of the above in the crock the night before and put it in the fridge.  I turned it on low when I left for work and let it cook for 8 hours.  Add flour for thickening if needed.

Little man only ate the beef, and gave it a thumbs down.  Princess, Captain and I all give it two thumbs up. SUPER EASY!