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Crockpot Delights

Crockpot Delights

Marvelous meals that cook while you are away.

by

The clock was turned back one hour. Our days turned shorter and became darker earlier. Just the thought of having to come home when it is night already and then fixing dinner can be a daunting task. Wouldn’t it be marvelous if dinner cooked itself and was ready to serve to your hungry family as they step into the house?

There is a way, and the crockpot is the answer. A marvelous little pot that does most of the job for you, freeing up your evening hours for more important chores.

Most people use their crockpot only to cook their cholent for Shabbos, but it can also be used any other day of the week. Simple hassle free one-dish meals can be cooked with fabulous results. Just place all ingredients into the crockpot in the morning and let it do the rest. You will be happily surprised with the results- deliciously evenly cooked meals that are ready to be served at your whim.

Almost any recipe that requires baking or stovetop simmering will work beautifully in the crockpot. Another advantage of cooking in a crockpot is that it does not allow for the nutrients to escape as they all stay sealed.

Suggested Cooking time

Stove top                             Crock pot (low)                    Crock pot (high)
15 to 30 minutes                       4 to 8 hours                          1 ½ to 2 ½ hrs.
30 to 40 minutes                       6 to 10 hours                        3 to 4 hours
50 min. to 3 hours                     8 to 12 hours                        4 to 6 hours

To adapt a favorite recipe reduce the amount of liquid by approximately half. Remember that liquids do not boil away as they do in conventional cooking therefore less water is required. Do not overfill the pot or liquid will ooze out, especially if you chose to cook on high.

Generally, there is no need for preparatory steps. Onions and other vegetables do not need to be browned or sautéed first. Simply place all ingredients you have selected for your days meal in the pot and let it simmer all day. Change cooking times to meet your schedule. One hour on high generally equals two hours on low. The crockpot cooks gently, so don’t worry about length of cooking time. If you are in a hurry, cook on high for first 1 to 3 hours and then turn down to low for the remaining time.

Try not to remove the lid during the cooking process, for that will cause steam to escape and cooking will take longer. Lately I have been taking meals out of the freezer, one bucket of rice and another of beans and warming it in the crock pot, with delicious results, especially since it is ready when I am, and it is not necessary to scramble to warm up my food the last minute. The meal feels more lavish when it is ready ahead of time.

A single dish served with a healthy tossed salad is all you need for a perfect meal accomplished to perfection with little effort.

Barley Vegetable Soup

Ingredients

1 cup regular pearl barley
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
3 large carrots cut in rounds
1 onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 sweet potato, peeled and chopped
1 cup fresh or frozen corn
2 cups frozen green beans (optional)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 Tbs Braggs Amino acid
1/2 inch piece of Ginger
6 cups of water - adjust amount towards end of cooking

Instructions

Place all ingredients in a 5 to 6 quart crockpot in the order given. Do not stir.

Cover crockpot and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.

Before serving stir soup, adjusting salt and pepper. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Serves 10

Succulent Chicken Dinner

Ingredients

1 onion chopped
2 cloves of garlic minced
4 chicken bottoms (legs and thighs)
2 Tbs mayonnaise
2 Tbs ketchup
2 Tbs sugar free apricot jam
2 medium potatoes
2 sweet potatoes
1 cup water

Instructions

Peel and cube potato and sweet potato and place over onions. Sprinkle lightly with salt. Pour water into the pot. Lay chicken over the potatoes. Mix mayonnaise, ketchup and jam until well combined. Spread over chicken. Turn on your pot on low for 6 hours. After 5 hours add a package of your favorite frozen vegetables and turn it into a complete delectable meal.

Gourmet Hungarian Goulash

This is one dish that the family loves. The recipe is really easy to make. It can be cooked in a pot but the slow cooker always brings out the best in any recipe. Prepare it the night before and refrigerate overnight and then just plug it in the morning.

Ingredients

800g /2 lbs. round steaks, cut in 3 cm /1 inch cubes or goulash meat or spare ribs
1 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tablespoon Flour
1 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Pepper
1−1/2 Teaspoon Hungarian Paprika
1/4 Teaspoon Dried thyme, crushed
400g/14 oz can tomatoes
1 cup brown rice rice

Instructions

Put steak cubes, onion, garlic in the slow cooker. Stir in flour and mix to coat steak cubes. Add remaining ingredients. Stir well, cover and cook on low for 8−10 hours Add your favorite frozen vegetables and 1 cup brown rice 1 hour before serving, and stir in thoroughly. (High: 4−5 hours, stirring occasionally.)

Lentil Pilaf

Ingredients

½ onion finely diced
1 clove garlic
1 cup green or French lentils (pre soaked 6-8 hours)
1 large carrot chopped
1 zucchini
½ sweet potato
1 thinly sliced leek (checked and washed)
1 rib thinly sliced celery.

Instructions

Put all ingredients in crockpot and set on high for about 3 hours. Add salt to taste. Add 2/3 cup whole-wheat spiral or elbow macaroni for the last hour of cooking while on low flame. Enjoy your hot meal when you are ready! Preparation time 20 minutes Serves 6.

Published: November 21, 2009


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Visitor Comments: 19

(19) Anonymous, November 27, 2009 5:29 PM

This one is always a hit, especially with the kids... Turkey and Macaroni Crock Pot -1 tsp vegetable oil -1.5 lbs ground turkey -2 cans (10 3/4 ounces each) condensed tomato soup, undiluted -1 can (16 ounces) corn, drained -1/2 cup chopped onion -1 can (4 ounces) sliced mushrooms, drained -2 tablespoons ketchup -1 tablespoon mustard -salt and black pepper -2 cups (uncooked) macaroni 1. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Brown turkey, stirring to break up meat. Transfer turkey to crock pot slow cooker. 2. Add soup, corn, onion, mushrooms, ketchup, mustard, salt and pepper; mix well. Cover; cook on LOW 6 to 8 hours or on HIGH 3 to 4 hours. 3. Cook and drain macaroni, according to package instructions. 4. Stir in macaroni. Cover; cook on LOW 30 minutes.

(18) Miriam Rosenberg, November 26, 2009 6:51 PM

what is braggs amino acid?

(17) Fraidi Neiman, November 26, 2009 2:27 AM

Thank you! Great new ideas.

I've been using my crockpot for many years to prepare dinner on days that I will be out for many hours. I am excited to try these new recipes. Keep them coming.

(16) Silky Pitterman, November 23, 2009 8:54 PM

You could also use a regular pot.

I love slow cooking but I usually use a pot on top of a blech like I would do on Shabbos. If you are cooking for less people, you can still use these lovely recipes but make less and use a smaller pot.

(15) Anonymous, November 23, 2009 7:11 PM

"bottoms and tops" is Jewish

I think this is a translation from Yiddish, because I never heard this before I started to hang out with Jews.

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