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DBENNETT43's Photo DBENNETT43 SparkPoints: (0)
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1/17/09 2:00 P

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LABEILLE, THANKS FOR THE INFO. THAT IS VERY INTERESTING. emoticon

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LABEILLE's Photo LABEILLE Posts: 1,035
1/16/09 8:46 P

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Re the canned cream soup debate:

I got away from using these when I had to really watch my budget. With a microwave it is super-quick and easy to make a basic white sauce; all my kids can now do it. You control the salt and the fat, and you can add whatever you want (cheese sauce being the favourite around here). When I was really penny-pinching, I would use veggie stock (from boiling carrot & onion peels etc in the crockpot) and add powdered milk. Was I surprised to read in a fancy French cookbook that the original way to do it is to "infuse" the milk with carrot and onion which you then throw away! I did the same thing, backwards, and cheaper and easier.

The only place this doesn't really work is in all those crockpot recipes, because you can't cook milk that long in the cp. If you want to make tasty food in the cp with real ingredients (not cans) it takes a little more work and planning. Browning the food makes a big difference; I would toss beef cubes as well as the onion and veggies into a hot oven or broiler briefly. Also, you need to use whole spices and/or add them later to get the full flavour. But it can be done, and you end up being spoiled by the taste of real food.

I do use cans in my crockpot cooking, but mostly it's canned beans (black, kidney, chickpeas) and canned tomatoes. Even for pasta sauce, I like it better with my own veggies and seasonings added to plain tomatoes or tomato sauce.

KD2008's Photo KD2008 Posts: 824
1/15/09 1:14 A

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I did this over the holidays - love it!

Trying to live my life like its Golden


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OHIOMOM's Photo OHIOMOM SparkPoints: (95,332)
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1/13/09 2:30 P

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I got my Diabetic Cookbook in the mail today (subscription type). It has several slow cooker recipes in it. Rather than try to type them in, I thought it better to let you know, perhaps you can look for it, I ususally see is in the check out line, but I am sure the library subscribes. You might find one you like. Several look interesting, the good thing is since they are geared towards diabetic, well they are a bit healthier.

Dot
Goal: To do better today than I did yesturday.




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CILANTRO88's Photo CILANTRO88 Posts: 60
1/12/09 7:11 P

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Thanks for sharing. I'd like to try that with some soy milk just as a way to get some move veggies into my youngest!

Edited by: CILANTRO88 at: 1/12/2009 (19:12)
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DBENNETT43's Photo DBENNETT43 SparkPoints: (0)
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1/12/09 1:03 A

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Jodi, emoticon for sharing..I copied into an email and am going to give it a try! emoticon

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JODIBIRD1's Photo JODIBIRD1 Posts: 112
1/11/09 6:53 P

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Hi cilantro and all! We just finished eating dinner made with my personal substitute for cream of whatever soup...I simmer in some broth 1 diced onion, 1/2 cup (ish) each yellow squash and cauliflower diced small and 1 T minced garlic. When all is soft I add 1 cup skim milk and blend it into a fine puree. Season to suite your final dish, with optional addition of an egg for richness. For me tonight it was mac and veg and cheese, so the "seasoning" was to melt in some sharp cheddar after it was all blended smooth. There are other recipes for subs that come closer in texture but I made up this one for the nutrients.

Jodi

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CILANTRO88's Photo CILANTRO88 Posts: 60
1/10/09 11:36 A

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I've seen recipes for that before. It would certainly be less processed and lower in sodium, but it would still be loaded with fat and basically empty calories (white flour and fat are the key ingredients in white sauce which is the base of those recipes). It's just not my thing.

I'm not disappointed that I can't use the recipes that feature cream of whatever soups. I'm disappointed that there are not more recipes that feature fresh wholesome ingredients that would be more like the foods I would cook if I were not using the crockpot. I did get a chance to look briefly at one of the cookbooks recommended here, Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook--Cooking for 2 (or something like that) and it had some nice recipes. I'm not cooking for two, so that cookbook was not for me, but I am looking for their original cookbook for regular size crockpots in the hopes that it would also have some good recipes. (And, yes, I do know that I could double or triple the recipes, but since different sized crockpots are used the cooking times could be off and I am not home all day to keep an eye on it so I would prefer a cookbook with recipes that are tested for the way I would be using them.)

Edited by: CILANTRO88 at: 1/10/2009 (11:37)
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SEAMYST's Photo SEAMYST Posts: 554
1/9/09 8:31 P

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Would you be interested in making your own cream of whatever soup so you can control the salt, etc.?

CORNEDHASH SparkPoints: (10,257)
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1/7/09 7:19 A

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Hey, CILANTRO88, I completely agree as well. My BF & I aren't vegetarians but we don't use any of the cream of whatever soups. Much too salty, etc. and we get fresh veggies every week from our CSA so we're eating a lot less meat than we used to eat.

I don't know if you blog or not, but the Livejournal.com site has a couple of crock potting communities:

community.livejournal.com/wha
t_a_crock

community.livejournal.com/veg
_crockpot


Some of the entries in the first one are locked so a non-member of that community may not see them but most are unlocked. Veg_crockpot's entries are all unlocked. Whenever I need crock ideas, help or a good laugh, I mosey on over to there and check it out. www.recipezaar.com/recipes/cr
ockpot
also has over 7,000 recipes. You can probably filter them by vegetarian if you want. Hope this helps.

Edited by: CORNEDHASH at: 1/7/2009 (07:20)
CELTIC_LADY's Photo CELTIC_LADY SparkPoints: (47,133)
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1/1/09 5:33 P

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Happy shopping! I only have one - just to get the hang of it. Here's to a healthy 2009 and time saved to do the things that help us in our goals! emoticon
Maura

Edited by: CELTIC_LADY at: 1/1/2009 (17:37)
You are NEVER given a wish without also being given the power to make it come true. Remember, you do have to work for it though! LOL
"Dreams do come true!"



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DBENNETT43's Photo DBENNETT43 SparkPoints: (0)
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12/31/08 6:50 P

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CELTIC_LADY, emoticon for the info! Found 96 cookbooks on Amazon.com.. emoticon
Don't care for cookbooks but may go ahead and get a couple of these!! emoticon

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CILANTRO88's Photo CILANTRO88 Posts: 60
12/31/08 5:07 P

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That book sounds right up my alley. We do occasionally eat some fish and chicken, but because we have a vegetarian & vegan in the house meat is never the main focus of our meal. So, recipes for roasts and such (which can be the main component of some slow cooker cookbooks) aren't of much use to us. I'll have to check and see if our local library has that cookbook. Thanks!

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CELTIC_LADY's Photo CELTIC_LADY SparkPoints: (47,133)
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12/31/08 2:38 P

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I agree with CILANTRO88 about using fresh ingredients in the CP. I found a terrific cookbook - unusual innovative combinations. I'm new to using this and found the tips and techniques helpful. We do eat meat but I expect you could simply omit or substitute in some of the recipes. It's by Beth Hensperger, Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Recipes for Two. There are two of us and it makes enough for two meals and a lunch or two. Plenty. Try the Butternut Squash soup or braised chicken with garbanzos and dried fruit. Yummy... emoticon Maura

Edited by: CELTIC_LADY at: 12/31/2008 (14:39)
You are NEVER given a wish without also being given the power to make it come true. Remember, you do have to work for it though! LOL
"Dreams do come true!"



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SEAMYST's Photo SEAMYST Posts: 554
12/31/08 2:08 P

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I'm going to have to check out those 2 cookbooks (like I need another one emoticon )

we're not much for cold sandwiches either.

CONNECTED1's Photo CONNECTED1 Posts: 3,297
12/30/08 7:58 P

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I also like more ethnic and "unusual" recipies. My son (8) actually told me a few month ago that I make the most unusual food (in a nice way). He gets a lot of leftovers for his lunch too since he isn't big on sandwhiches either. When I was working I almost always took leftovers since I could look forward to that a lot more than a frozen dinner or a cold sandwhich.

For those recipies I like the Betty Crocker Biggest Book of Slow Cooker recipies - it is huge and has a lot of options and a section devoted to vegetarian. I also like the Healthy Slow Cooker by Judith Finlayson which also has a lot of good vegetarian (and some vegan) recipies.

As for freezing I will double a dinner to freeze up a batch. I often end up freezing something just because it made up more than I expected. Sometimes I get a whole dinner and other times I will freeze in small protions for my or my sons lunch. So handy to have on hand when making dinner just doesn't go as planned.

Keep a green tree in your heart & perhaps the singing bird will come.
Chinese proverb
ANITAWPG's Photo ANITAWPG Posts: 3,905
12/29/08 8:13 P

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I have often used my freezer - I make meatballs, stews, etc - and then freeze in batches - usually lunch sized batches

But I still find lots of times I get home from work and don't want to pull anything out of the freezer - so I need to start using my crock pot more so that we have a meal ready when we get home - my fiance is a shift worker - so he makes supper when he is off - problem is, I am not out of the habit of cooking when I get home - so when he is working I tend to scrounge

Respect the mountain. Then take it with a Passion!

Movie quote: "Never Surrender, Never say Die" - my diet motto



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CILANTRO88's Photo CILANTRO88 Posts: 60
12/29/08 9:45 A

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I know what you mean Seamyst. I also look for unusual recipes. We rarely eat meat, so the standard roasts and such aren't for us. And, I don't generally use cream of whatever soups which seem to be a staple of crockpot cooking. I am always on the lookout for recipes that are new and different that don't rely on large quantities of meat or processed ingredients that I can easily make in my crockpot. They are harder to find, but they are out there.

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DATAMOM2's Photo DATAMOM2 Posts: 113
12/29/08 9:30 A

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I LOVE MY CROCKPOT AND USE IT OFTEN. HOWEVER, I AM TERRIBLE ABOUT REMEMBERING TO TAKE SOMETHING OUT OF THE FREEZER FOR SUPPER. MY DH GAVE ME A NUWAVE OVEN FOR CHRISTMAS (IT WAS THE ONLY THING I ASKED FOR) AND I HAVE LOVED USING IT. IF ANYONE KNOWS OF A MESSAGE BOARD FOR THIS APPLIANCE, I WOULD LOVE TO KNOW ABOUT IT AS I AM JUST LEARNING ABOUT IT AND ALL THE DIFFERENT THINGS YOU CAN COOK IN IT. THANKS.

THE ONLY PERSON WHO STANDS IN THE WAY OF MY SUCCESS IS ME.

I DON'T KNOW WHAT TOMORROW HOLDS BUT I KNOW WHO HOLDS MY HAND.


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DBENNETT43's Photo DBENNETT43 SparkPoints: (0)
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12/26/08 4:40 P

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emoticon Could be my mistake! Most of the recipes are not unusal they make a lot of recipes everything goes into CP in the morning and cook all day. Just watch the recipe! Some recipes you can put on low and cook longer! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SEAMYST's Photo SEAMYST Posts: 554
12/26/08 11:40 A

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maybe unusual wasn't the right word. I get so tired of sandwiches and the regular soups, so maybe I meant more ethinc recipes to spice up my life. What I love most about eating out is the variety.

So I'm going to try adapting more recipes to get the variety I need. You can bake, roast, etc. in the crockpot and it's cheaper than using the stove / oven even with it the crockpot on an 8 hr setting.

DBENNETT43's Photo DBENNETT43 SparkPoints: (0)
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12/25/08 10:41 P

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Unusual recipes in the crockpot?
Did you find a different site?...I tried working looking on spark Recipes and may not entering it correctly. emoticon emoticon
I have been doing the CP for several weeks and Freezing portions for Lunch and between the Kids and I we have eaten just about everthing emoticon

Edited by: DBENNETT43 at: 12/25/2008 (22:47)
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SEAMYST's Photo SEAMYST Posts: 554
12/25/08 8:54 P

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I don't like to brown bag, so I'm going to try to cook extra of unusual recipes in the crockpot so hopefully my brown bagging will be more interesting.

LOVEBEAM's Photo LOVEBEAM Posts: 3,753
12/25/08 8:46 P

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I was going to cook in batches and freeze them so i can have some quick ready to eat foods..its just a change in my mindset becasue i am a single woman and i never think to cook extra BUT i find myself int he same boat of reaching for foods when i am unprepared so this will help reach my weight loss goals and better use of my time during the week.

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CILANTRO88's Photo CILANTRO88 Posts: 60
12/25/08 8:31 P

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I don't do the freezer meals thing, but one of my New Year's resolutions is to cook more meals at home and I am planning to rely heavily on my crockpot to help me achieve that goal.

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SEAMYST's Photo SEAMYST Posts: 554
12/25/08 7:27 P

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How are you using these 2 items to support your goals in the new year?

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