Monday, February 27, 2017

Slow Cooker Stewed Chicken

I was speechless when I first tried using my slow cooker and noticed that I did not have to abandon other things I wanted to do just because I was cooking a meal. It is one of those kitchen appliances that gives me this unshakeable confidence that anything I cook in it will come out great. I cannot remember how I stumbled into knowledge of this cool cooking tool, but I will say that it made my stew chicken come out better than I ever expected it to.

Me & Cooking

I am someone who might go into a cookbook or on Pinterest to find a recipe that interests me and that I want to try. I am also a person who will look at a recipe and improvise. But mostly, I am a person who improvises without looking at any recipe and instead vibes with an idea of what to make. I knew I wanted to make chicken; it was the how to prepare it that I was not sure about. Then I looked at my slow cooker and then I decided that I would make it stewed.

Slow Cooker Stewed Chicken


Ingredients

Chicken Breast
Vinegar
Lemon Juice
Salt
1 Onion
A Dash of Garlic Powder
Vegetables of your Choices
½ Can of Crushed Tomatoes
Barbecue Sauce
Soy Sauce
A pinch of ginger powder
A Dash of Turmeric
1 Packet of Sazon
1 dash of seasoned salt
Water

Instructions

1. Take chicken breasts and place it in a large pot with enough water to cover it, vinegar, lemon juice and salt. Place it over a large fire and let it boil on the stove for about an hour.

2. Remove from fire and throw out the water. Remove excess fat and skin and rinse each piece of chicken under cold water.

3. In crock pot, cover bottom with barbecue sauce. Layer it with soy sauce and then layer atop it with pieces of the chicken.



4. Add water to cover about half the crockpot, seasoned salt, garlic, turmeric, sazon, and ginger. Add vegetables. Slice your onion and cover the entire content of pot with the onions and then add tomatoes.

5. Place cover over the crockpot and set heat on high and let it cook for about 4-5 hours.

The chicken comes out tender, juicy, flavorful 
and the aroma around the house is unbeatable. 
Best served hot. Pairs well with rice. Perfect for a family meal.


Thursday, February 16, 2017

Slow Cooker Lentil Soup

With good intentions, I wanted to make something warm and hearty for my family to enjoy during the day so that whenever they felt the urge to have something good to eat, they could. And so, I decided to prepare some slow cooker lentil soup and what a great idea that was.

I learned a memorable lesson which I will share with you if you are interested in making fresh lentil soup from scratch. If you are going to use dry beans, it will take about 8 hours or more in your slow cooker, even on high heat, so if you have a veracious hunger to eat now, then don’t try it in your slow cooker and instead, cook it stove top. But if you want a meal that is bursting with flavor that you do not have to be watching over all day while it slow cooks, then this might be for you.

Here is the recipe:

Recipe

Slow Cooker Lentil Soup
Cooking Time 8.5 Hours on high heat/ 10 hours on low heat


Ingredients

Two 32 Oz Vegetable Broth
½ Cup Dried Lentil Beans
½ Cup Dried Red Lentil Beans
Two Carrot Sticks, diced
Two Celery Ribs, diced
One clove of garlic
½ can of plum or diced tomatoes [optional]
A Dash of Turmeric Powder
A Dash of Italian Flavoring
A Dash of seasoned Salt
2 Tbsp of butter
One TBSP Apple Cider Vinegar

Directions

1. Add Broth, Dry Lentils, Garlic, Italian Seasoning, Turmeric, and salt into slow cooker. Put slow cooker on high and cover it.


2. About four hours later, add diced carrots, celery, tomatoes, butter and vinegar, and continue to cook lentils on high for four hours or until lentil beans are tender.


3. Serve hot. Nicely pairs with warm Italian bread.

What I love about slow cookers is how the flavor just bursts and how the aroma just takes over the house and makes you look forward to the meal that you will soon be able to have. I also like that you can keep your crockpot on warm without it cooking so that you do not have to feel obligated to nuke it in the microwave. The preparation time is short but the cooking time though lengthy, is worth it considering the final product.

Some Things to Consider If Using This Recipe

I chose vegetable broth for taste and because there was not meat in the recipe but if you like chicken broth, beef broth or even water, might work better for you; so use that. I love tomatoes and so I add it to everything that I cook, but it is not necessary to add to the recipe though I feel that it adds to the flavor and I love it.  

Lentil soup is perfect for a cold, winter day and at any time of day for any meal. Enjoy it hot and feel the heartiness all over your senses. 

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