Tag Archives: crockpot

hearty spicy and sweet lamb stew…

19 Nov

lamb stew urbanpocketknife

Okie dokie, the toques, giant scarves and mittens are out!  The weather is getting nippy which always means the slow cooking starts happening in my kitchen.  There’s no steadfast rules for a good stew, you scrounge your fridge for some veggies, get a nice slab of meat and add some tasty liquid.

If I’m home with time on my hands, it goes in the dutch oven, if I’m out, it’s in the crockpot.  This particular stew is slightly sweet from the veggies, has lots of tender meat, garlicky and a touch spicy.  Share it with friends, eat it with a hunk of sourdough bread and freeze the leftovers for future meals.

Here’s the recipe!

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chi chi chi chili! (with a secret ingredient)

3 Feb

Chili is another great “put what you have” in the pot kind of foods.  As long as you have ground beef, tomatos, kidney beans and some cumin, you can add anything else you want and it still tastes great.  I always make heaps to feed the boys but it never really lasts longer than a day and a half.

What you need!
1 large onion
4 cloves of garlic
1 pkg ground beef
1 can red kidney beans
1 small pkg mushrooms
1 big can diced tomatoes
2 large tomatoes
1 1/2 cup frozen corn
1 tbsp cumin
1 big squirt of ketchup
cooking oil
1 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tsp chili flakes or a few dashes of hot sauce
salt and pepper to taste

What to do!

1.  Chop the onions and tomatos, slice mushrooms, smash the garlic and remove skins.  In a big pot, splash a bit of oil and sautee the onions and garlic on medium.  Put the other stuff aside.

smells yum!

2.  After the onions are soft, turn up the heat to medium-high and add in ground beef.  Break up the ground beef as you go so it doesn’t clump.  Add both soy sauces with a sprinkle of salt and pepper.  *Note – I don’t really measure here so season to suit your taste.

in case you're curious what brand of soy sauces I use

3.  Continue to brown ground beef, add in sliced mushrooms and stir for 5 minutes.

mmmm...steamy beefy mushroom mix

4.  Open up that can of kidney beans and rinse out the red gooey liquid.  Add beans, corn, canned tomatoes, and fresh tomatoes to the pot.  Crank the heat up to high and stir once in a while.

a delicious mess of colours

5.  Add in your seasonings.  I gave some guidelines up top but it’s really depends on your taste and what level of spicy you can handle.  I generally taste the brothy bit as I’m seasoning and remember that the liquid will boil down and the flavours will concentrate so make sure it’s not too intense at this stage, you can always season more later.

*Note – for some reason ketchup really makes the chili richer, a trick I learned from my mom.  I guess it replaces tomato paste in some chili recipes but I rarely have that in my pantry.

the secret ingredient!

6.  Once the chili is up to a fine bubble, reduce the heat to a simmer (low for me) and let it sit for anywhere from 30min to a couple of hours, the longer it cooks, the better it tastes!  Serve with a dollop of sour cream or some grated cheese…add in some bread and you’re good to go!

chili makes my mouth happy