The calendar say October 25th. The thermometer says 75 degrees. I don’t mean to be ungrateful, but I’ve been drooling and ogling over fall recipes for MONTHS now, and I’m ready for some low and slow cooked meals.
I have a confession. I’m having a love affair…with my crockpot. I know crockpots sometimes get a bad rap. I mean, I myself have fallen victim to the grossly overdone chicken breast on a couple of occasions. But truth be told, as a busy mom of two small kids, and wife to a husband who gets really excited about leftovers; the crockpot has been my best friend for some time now.
In the spirit of full disclosure, I give you my crockpot. She’s been loved, as you can well see. Please notice my dirty oven mitt on top of the lid (new ones for Christmas, Kiki??). They rest there because one time I attempted to transfer the crockpot into the oven for a 2nd day reheat. The plastic knob on top melted. Duh. Now there is a hole and because I figure that if too much steam escapes the dish will go terribly awry, I cover the hole with an oven mitt. Of course.
As of late, our dinnertime menu has been efficient and repetitive. I’ve mentioned before that we don’t go out for dinner very often save for the weekly Papa Johns delivery and so I usually cook 2 or 3 times each week to last the entire 6-7 days. The crockpot is really great for this. Soon after we started dating, I noticed Mr. Zoom’s favorite phrase in relation to mealtime was “waste not, want not”. This is not a sentiment I had ever embraced prior our relationship. I was the girl in college who subscribed to the second “beefiest” meal plan (C), and I’d frequently fill my tray with 2 or 3 entrees, just so I could “get a little taste” of everything. Imagine my excitement at marrying such a thrifty guy and being subjected to leftovers…several times a week.
5 years later and I’m a crockpot-loving, barefoot-in-the-kitchen cooking mama who thinks leftovers are the God’s gift to the world. Go figure.
Do you realize how challenging it is to make a lumpy creamy brown sauce look appetizing? I promise, it’s warm and hearty and full bodied and deliciously Fall!
Crockpot Beef Stew-ganoff
Serves 2 adults + plus 2 toddler kids + an overweight dog…for 2 days
This is really more like a creamy stew than a stroganoff. I mean, what exactly IS a stroganoff?
1 lb beef stew meat
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 large onion, chopped
12 oz. sliced mushrooms
2 tablespoons Worchestire sauce
2 cans golden mushroom soup
1/2 cup water
8 ounces cream cheese
This is really so easy. Dump everything but the cream cheese in the crockpot. Turn it on low for 6-7 hours or high for 3-4 hours. Stir every once in a while. Just before serving, stir in cream cheese. EASY.
Serve over egg noodles, or rice, or mashed potatoes. Mmmm. Mashed potatoes.