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The Answer for long Work Days/College Nights - The Crockpot

Updated on February 3, 2016
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Pork Roast - My Way

At times I work/worked 12 hours or more and still spend half the evening driving to class and writing papers/doing homework. So finding time for cooking is a little rough at times.

I have to credit my Mother in Law with introducing me to a Crock-Pot. It became my life-saver!

The Commissary used to sell pork roasts for less than $7. So I would buy a couple and freeze them.

To make my pot roast you will need a large Crock-Pot, a family size can of mushrooms (or two, if your kids are like mine and like to pick the mushrooms out of can and Crock-Pot), a family size pork roast, a good pork seasoning and the sides of your choice.

Add the roast to the Crock-Pot and add the juice of the mushrooms. Cook it overnight and move the pot to the Fritch in the morning. When it is cooled down enough to were the grease hardens on the top, remove the grease with a spoon and turn the Crock-Pot back on. Add the mushrooms and season to taste. If you like gravy, use some flour or starch (make sure to add it to hot liquid before mixing it under and stir well afterwards) to thicken the juice a little. Or you can just add pork gravy from the store.
It goes well with buttered baby potatoes and fresh herbs, mashed potatoes, pasta or rice. Garnish with fresh herbs and some diced or sliced tomatoes.

The slow-cooking of the Crock-Pot should make your roast so tender that it will melt in your mouth!

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Koenigsberger Klopse

Some of my favorite German foods are Koenigsberger Klopse! I was surprised to see a recipe with capers the other day, considering it is kind of a rare item around here!

I will eventually pry the recipe out of my Mom, but until then I am going with what I figured out so far.

I am honest: I buy the meatballs! But my Mom has another recipe where she mixes herbs, fine bread crumbs and ground meat with eggs and makes her own. I am using work as an excuse!

Now you have two options:
- You can fry the meatballs (especially when you made your own) in the skillet and use the drippings to make a gravy to which you will add the drained capers (the juice of the capers is usually way to salty, but you can add a little to taste!). You can use the Crock-Pot to either cook the rice alone or add your gravy and rice to it and cook it overnight. That would require more gravy and enough liquid to prevent it from burning. But the rice takes on the flavor and I love flavored rice! Add the meatballs on the end to keep them overcooking.
- Cook your rice with a little of the capers sauce and some seasoning in the Crock-Pot. When it is almost done, add the meatballs, the gravy and the capers to it. It will make for one hell of a mix. I also like to add a little cream.

You can also cook it all separately on the stove and use potatoes instead of rice. I found that it doesn't do too well with pasta. I prefer to cook it separately, but it requires time I don't always have. If I do, I love to garnish with something green and serve it with green vegetables or even Brussels Sprouts.

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Beef Stew

Something that does really well in a Crock-Pot is Beef Stew. And you can replace the water making up the liquid usually by something with a lot more taste to it!

When I make beef stew, I buy canned carrots and peas. Some add celery, but that is another thing I just can't stand smell or think about eating! I sometimes also buy canned potatoes if the mood strikes. But you have to make sure that you like the taste of their juices or it will ruin it!

Add the juice of the vegetables to the Crock-Pot and than add the beef. Cook it until almost done and refrigerate. Remove the hardened grease on the surface and turn the pot back on. Usually the meat is tender enough by now to fall apart on its own, but make sure you cut all larger pieces. Add the vegetables to it (If you prefer fresh potatoes, add them when you started cooking the meat! It will also thicken it a little!). Season it with some of Maggie's instant beef broth. To thicken it up a little you can either cook it a little longer until the potatoes come apart or just use a bit of instant mashed potatoes. Make sure not to destroy the vegetables when you stir the mashed potatoes in.

When you serve it, garnish the plate with chopped green onions or chives and serve it with fresh garlic bread!

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Chicken & Dirty Rice

I like how the slow-cooking method tenderizes the meat. Especially chicken. The only problem is to get the grease off of it and the refrigeration method doesn't always work.

When I make rice and chicken, I cut as much as possible of the fat off of the chicken before adding it to the Crock-Pot. I can't stand the greasy taste and my stomach just doesn't agree with it! Grease can ruin the taste of almost everything!

Add your 'cleaned' chicken to the Crock-Pot. If you want to add mushrooms, you can add the mushroom juice too. If you use canned beans, asparagus or snap peas, add their juice and a little mustard (my Mom's secret to take the 'gas' out of the beans!). Add enough water to allow the rice to soak it up and keep it from burning.

You can buy a dirty rice mix at most stores, Sometimes when the mood strikes me, I replace the rice that comes with the mix with a long-corn rice or even a mix of different types for effect and taste. My favorite, for its taste and color, is definitely brown or wild rice (or both!).

Add the dirty rice seasoning mix, the rice, the vegetables and maybe some dill or some Italian seasoning to the pot and let it do its magic!

If you are one of those gravy addicts, make sure you use one that matches the meat. But it does taste great by itself! And the chicken will be so tender...

6 Chicken Crock Pot Freezer Meals

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    • profile image

      Derdriu 

      6 years ago

      Cat R: What delicious, helpful, scrumptious, useful hub! In particular, I like the chicken and dirty rice information.

      Thank you for sharing, etc.,

      Derdriu

    • RunAbstract profile image

      RunAbstract 

      6 years ago from USA

      Num - Num! Sounds delish!

    • picklesandrufus profile image

      picklesandrufus 

      6 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va

      have to pass these German recipes on to my brother in law for he loves German food!

      Crock pots really can be life savers for busy families! thanks

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