I have cooked every day this month. I have made the commitment to cook meals from the food we have in our freezer and pantry. My slow cooker has been used four out of the first five days of November. Most of us have a slow cooker stashed someplace in our home.
- Nov 1 – Chicken Pot Pie (Stovetop iron skillet and oven)
- Nov 2 – Chili (Slow Cooker)
- Nov 3 – Surprise Chicken, Brown Rice, Broccoli/carrot medley (slow cooker and stovetop)
- Nov 4 – Pizza (Sauce was made in slow cooker)
- Nov 5 – Pot Roast (Slow Cooker)
Just the name of the Slow Cooker calms me down. It means you can’t get in a hurry when you cook. I was thinking about Sunday’s meal two days ahead of time. That is when I took my frozen roast out of the freezer and placed it in the refrigerator to thaw.
When I got up on Sunday morning, I started to put together my pot roast. I start by putting a cup of plain flour in the ziplock bag that was covering my roast as it thawed. It is important that raw meat juice does not spill in my refrigerator. To that Ziplock bag, I add black pepper, salt, red pepper, and garlic powder. Then I shake the roast in the bag. In my trusty iron skillet I heated some olive oil to brown my roast on all sides. After it was browned I placed it in my slow cooker. Next to make the gravy to go over it.
I took my sturdy spatula and scraped the bottom of the skillet. I needed to add more oil to brown more flour to make the gravy base. I dumped about 1/2 cup of flour in the oil and started stirring it around. I had a quart of broth standing ready to add to the browned flour. One of my favorite ingredients is Better Than Bouillon. If you don’t have this a bouillon cube will work too as well as beef broth. A package of gravy mix will also add flavor too. A roast is only as good as the gravy. I taste it to see if it is just right. If I need to, I add soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce. When it gets to the right color and taste; I cut up an onion into thin wedges into the gravy.
Then I pour my gravy over my roast and wash up my precious iron skillet. Two hours later, I added 6 whole small unpeeled red potatoes, 5 large carrots peeled and cut into three pieces, and 1/2 a cabbage. We like biscuits with this meal. This roast cooks for 8 hours on low in my slow cooker.
I have a few rules that I live by in my kitchen. They keep my kitchen from exploding!
- Don’t cook on high heat!
- Don’t leave the kitchen with water running
- Clean up as you cook
- Start with an empty dishwasher
- Start with a sink full of hot soapy water
- Put ingredients away as you use them
- Throw trash away immediately
- Wipe down counters as you cook
- Wipe up spills on the floor as they happen
- Don’t get in a hurry!
Find your slow cooker, go to a thrift shop and acquire one, or order one from Amazon. They are inexpensive! I like a 6 to 7 quart one because I cook with leftovers in mind. Let’s use this wonderful tool to help put dinner on the table. It will relieve your guilt if you will fill it up and turn it on.
With your menu plan and groceries in your home; you can always be ready to answer the question, “What’s for dinner?”
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