CROCKPOT/SLOW COOKING or PRESSURE COOKING
Both have useful advantages in everyone’s today’s busy lifestyle.
There are many advantages of using the slow cooking methods.
Prior to leaving your home in the morning you prepare your crockpot/slow cooker ingredients. switch on its timer and off you go to do what you do.
When you return home tired and hungry your meal will be almost ready to put on a plate ready to eat or least most of the cooking preparation will have been done.
This ideal for meat and stews using the normally cheaper and tougher cuts of meat.
The crockpot or slow cooking methods cooks these tougher meats to a succulent tender texture.
Pressure cooking also has many advantages we will explore the benefits of what can be achieved with that particular cooking method later with our other recipes on the site.
They are superb for cooking your vegetables for very little time in this cooking process which does not destroy the goodness in the food and the vitamin is still there saved in the juices left after cooking which can be added to make a great gravies taste better.
Beef and Vegetables Slow cooked in Red Wine is great any time but slow cooked is absolutely succulent and very tasty too.
SLOW COOKED BEEF IN RED WINE
Trim any excess fat off the meat and cut into 2 cm cubes.
Heat the olive oil in a large pan and brown the meat on all sides.
Transfer to the slow cooker bowl.
Gently fry the bacon, carrot, onion and garlic for about 2 – 3 minutes.
Stir in the flour,then slowly add the red wine, and mix until well blended.
Bring the boil, stirring continuously, and then add the bay leaf, onions and seasoning.
Transfer to the slow cooker bowl and mix well.
Set your cooker to low and cook for 7 – 9 hours.
Serve with new boiled potatoes. If the gravy is too thin, transfer to a pan and use a little cornflour.to thicken your gravy.
As an alternative to serving just boiled potatoes you can pan fry your potatoes so they are just a little crisp and nicely browned.
Add some fresh Mint or Basel leafs for decorationA real heart warming winter meal
Hot chili chicken veg crockpot
Cote the Chicken both sides in olive oil.
Place the chicken breasts with a little more oil in the frying pan and fry on a medium heat just until they are nicely browned turn frequently.
Take out the chicken and place onto a plate and cover the plate.
Cook the chopped onions in the oil in the frying pan over medium-low heat, until just browning not too much.
Add the garlic to the pan and cook for 1 minute on a medium heat.
Add the diced peppers, sprinkle chili powder gently and evenly with, red pepper flakes, cayenne, and salt.
Cook for 1 minute on medium heat.
Mash the tomatoes by hand or in a food processor fitted with a steel blade (only a little about 6 to 8 rotations).
Add all the contents to your Crockpot or slow cooker.
Season with salt and black pepper.
Take the chicken from the plate and plate pieces into the slow cooker replace the cooker top.
Cook on a low temp for 3 to 4hours (check that the chicken is tender and cooked stir the contents.
Separate the meat from the bones and cut it into 3/4- to 1 inch chunks.
Add in the chili powder carefully and widely so as not to cause any lumps add the fresh chillies, stir and simmer, covered, with a plate or loose top for another 15/20 minutes.
Serve hot, before serving shake over the dish some of chopped onions.
Or you can grate a thin layer of Cheddar cheese, or add sour cream or natural yogurt as you wish.
COCKPOT/SLOW COOK SIX Hour Leg of Lamb
One 6 to 8 pound bone-in leg of lamb. (Ours are usually was about 5 pounds, so I crockpot/slow cook it for 5 1/2 hours.)
Set your oven on high heat.
Do not cut any fat within the meat,you need to leave a small layer of fat.
Season lamb with salt and pepper and place in roasting pan.
Check the lamb in your crockpot when the heated fat begins to appear on the surface of the meat that looks like brown spots after about 5-10 minutes.
Turn the meat over using a towel to take hold by the leg bone and cook the other side for 5-10 minutes.
Transfer lamb to a baking tray or tin foil sheet.
Turn down oven to 275 F, and place on a rack in lower third of the oven.
Carefully pour off excess fat from the roasting pan, and be careful not to discard the meat juices and brown residue.
Place a pan on a high heat and add the wine, and bring to a simmering boil.
Boil until the wine is reduced by about half.
Add stock, bay leaves, thyme,garlic,and tomatoes with their juice, and bring to a boil.
Return lamb to roasting pan, lower heat to medium high, and bring liquid back up to a simmer.
Spread the onions, carrots, and turnips around the meat.
Cover your roasting pan with heavy duty foil, and place lamb in oven.
Braise for 5 to 6 hour(it will depend on how much meat there is)
Gently turning the lamb in the crockpot every two hours.
If you are concerned when you check the lamb is cooking to fast and your oven to hot, turn the oven temperature down to 265 F.
Carefully transfer the Lamb from the crockpot to a serving dish.
Don't worry if the lamb is falling off the bone at this point, pour into a bowl the meat juices and fat,skim off the excess fat discard it(we like to keep it for roast potatoes an occasional treat.)
Put the meat juices into the roasting add a little water and flour to thicken juices up heat up to simmer.
Taste, and add salt and pepper as needed.
Pour your gravy into a serving bowl.
You will not have to carve the meat - it will be that tender.
Simply serve your meat using a fork or spoon on to a hot platepour your gravy over meat and vegetables.
Remember Roast Lamb goes well with roast potatoes and you could cook these at the same time as the lamb but only for 1 hour or so.