05/14/13
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crockpot berry cobbler

One of my favorite things to watch is Hunter play and interact with his daddy.  He sure loves him.  One more recent thing that just makes my heart smile is seeing this.

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Jacob will sit down on the ground with a book, and Hunter walks on over and sits down right next to him or on his lap.  He’s snuggled up close soaking in the book, and just being super sweet with his daddy.

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Love these two.

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When Jacob gets home from work, he tries to get as much play time in with Hunter.  This usually frees me up to get dinner started or just have some Heather time.  But on those days I plan ahead and start dinner in the crockpot I don’t have to be in the kitchen, I can sit on the couch right next to them and just watch.

While today’s recipe isn’t a crockpot dinner recipe, it is made in the crockpot, but for an after dinner treat of berry cobbler!

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I’m not going to lie, pictures of the cobbler cooking in the crockpot are not flattering to this dish.  I’ll show you.  Once it is done:

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Once you have taken most of the cobbler out:

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Good thing I’m basing this recipe on taste, not looks!  It was delicious, especially serves over nice cold vanilla ice cream.

I got to thinking about why you would use a crockpot for this recipe.  The prep time takes just as long as oven made cobbler and it takes longer to cook.  Well, it was a hot day when I made it, and not having to turn the oven on was glorious.  Summertime dessert making in the crockpot is the way to go.

Crockpot Berry Cobbler

adapted from here

Ingredients

  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup natural cane sugar, divided
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 2.5 cups fresh or frozen raspberries, thawed (or any berry)
  • 1.5 cups fresh or frozen blackberries, thawed (or any berry
  • Vanilla ice cream, optional

Directions

  • In a large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, 2 tablespoons sugar, baking powder and cinnamon. Combine the egg, milk and oil; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened (batter will be thick). Spread batter evenly into a 5-qt. slow cooker coated with oil.
  • In a large bowl, combine the salt and remaining flour and sugar; add berries and toss to coat. Spread over batter.
  • Cover and cook on high for 2 to 2-1/2 hours or until a toothpick inserted into cobbler comes out clean. Serve with ice cream if desired.

I may have skipped ahead in my 50 crockpot recipe list to share, but I’ll get back on track with the next one!  This one was pretty tasty and I just had to share. :)

Have you ever cooked dessert in a crockpot?  If so, what did you make?   Do you love watching a dad with his kiddo?

workoutwednesdayTomorrow I’m sharing PLANK workouts.  If you have one you want me to include, please email it to me (heather.englund@comcast.net) along with the link for where to find it.  Thanks!

Heather

04/19/13
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crockpot sauerkraut soup

Are you a fan of sauerkraut?   Jacob loves the stuff, which made him pretty stoked about this soup.  I on the other hand, am not a fan.  I avoid it with a 10-foot pole.  The only reason I tried this soup is because it’s part of my 50 crockpot recipes to make.  So instead of skipping it, I pulled on my big girl pants and made it.

And I’m sure glad I did.  The soup was actually really good!

The downside to this soup is the sodium content.  Between the kielbasa, chicken broth and cream of mushroom soup, there is way more sodium than I would typically eat.  I thought about ways to reduce it, and make it just a little better for you, and came up with making my own cream of mushroom soup, which is super easy by the way.  I followed this recipe, but used regular milk instead of cream or evaporated milk.

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After all the chopping, opening of cans and pouring, your soup is ready to go into the crockpot.  Then 6+ hours later, it’s time to eat!

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Even a skeptic like myself liked this soup.  Just make sure to have a gallon of water nearby the chug down as you chomp down.  Enjoy!

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Crockpot Sauerkraut Soup

adapted from here

Ingredients

  • 1 medium potato, cut into 1/4 inch cubed
  • 1 pound kielbasa, diced
  • 1 can (32 oz) sauerkraut, well rinsed and drained
  • 4 cups chicken broth, low sodium
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup (or make your own!)
  • 1/2 pound fresh mushroom, chopped
  • 1 cup cooked chicken, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 2 tbsp white vinegar
  • 2 tsp dill weed
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

Directions

  1. In a crockpot combine all ingredients.  Cook on low for 6+ hours, or until the vegetables are tender.
  2. I served this with crusty bread and crispy kale chips.  Great sides!

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Are you wondering if you won the giveaway?  The winner will be announced this afternoon (so you can still enter!) along with a little something to look forward to over the weekend.

Do you like sauerkraut?  If so, what do you eat it on?  What’s a strange food you love (yes, I think of sauerkraut as strange)?

Heather

02/21/13
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crockpot soup, times two

Crockpots, soup and cold weather.  All things that go hand in hand.  What happens when you take one of them away?

Tuesday was such a beautiful and sunny day.  February is technically supposed to be winter, but I’ll take these spring like days anytime I can get them.

On this sunny day Jacob, Hunter, Joe and I all went to Marine Park and played around a bit at the play ground before setting out for a long walk along the river.

Hunter had the best time swinging for his first time.  He smiled and clapped his hands together.  We both loved pushing him.

He didn’t seem as excited about the slide… kind of no reaction.  The swing was where the fun was at.  After the long walk, it ended with a few drops – typical Washington fashion.

When we arrived back home I wish I could say I had a warm meal waiting for us in the crockpot, but I didn’t.  I didn’t plan that far ahead in the morning.

BUT, with a few minutes in the morning, YOU could have one of these yummy soups waiting for you at the end of the day.

Cold weather not required.

Crockpot Southwestern Beef Stew
from taste of home

The picante sauce give the beef stew a little different flavor from your average beef stew.  A good change though!  We really liked this along with crusty bread and kale chips…. mmm kale chips.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 jar (16 ounces) picante sauce
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 4 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup cold water

Directions

  1. Place beef, picante sauce, potatoes, carrots, onion, chili powder, salt and cumin in a crockpot.
  2. Cover and cook on low for 8-9 hours or until meat and vegetables are tender.
  3. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and water until smooth; stir into stew. Cover and cook on high for 15 minutes or until gravy is thickened.

 

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup
adapted from  chef in training

Super easy and super yummy!  This recipe makes a ton of soup.  We ate it two nights in a row then I froze the rest, which filled 2 quart jars.

Ingredients

  • 2 chicken boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 cans fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1.5  cups frozen corn
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cans low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1-2 cups of water
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp chile powder
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients except the chicken in a crockpot.   Put chicken breasts on top of mixture and make sure they’re at least partly submerged in liquid. Cook on high 6-7 hours or low 8-9 hours. Before serving remove the chicken breasts from soup and shred, if needed, (sometimes they’ll just fall apart on their own, but sometimes they need some help). Return chicken to crockpot, stir to combine.
  2. Serve with tortilla chips, sour cream and cheese – or quesadillas like I did.

** Both recipes were made a couple weeks ago, so while I did get to enjoy them, it just wasn’t on that sunny day.

Do you enjoy soup in all weather, or just when it’s colder?  What’s the weather like in your area?

Heather