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Back to Reality

October 30th, 2015 at 06:10 am

The trip was amazing. I was surprisingly good about tracking my spending in YNAB for most of the trip. I fell off a bit right at the end. I'll have full numbers this weekend, but I did pretty well. We didn't even end up using all of the stuff we had (the $50 Palms comp and the Shark Reef passes).

Sedona is amazing and I feel so much more prepared now that we've met and booked all of our vendors. Now things can slow down a bit. I have a quick trip up to Boston next weekend to go bridesmaids' dress shopping.

Now that DF and I are living off of last month's income, I really hope we can buckle down and start saving up. I'll have a few weeks before cheer starts up, so I'm hoping to do some research into crock pot cooking. I'd like to do a whole lot more soups and stews in the winter, so my goal is to make that as easy as possible. Any tried and true recipes would be greatly appreciated!!

5 Responses to “Back to Reality”

  1. snafu Says:

    Nearly any recipe can be converted to CP, excellent for any of the cheaper cuts of meat that benefit from braising. Most definitely any soup or stew-like meal. No need to buy a recipe book, there are recipes galore on any on-line cookbook or specific ingredient you want to use.

    The tricks are...start with any/all root vegetables you plan to use, typically chopped mouth size, brown any meat before adding to CP, you need that caramelized look and flavour, reduce liquid of any regular, non CP recipe by half, add non root vegetables in the last hour or zap to fork-tender in microwave & add shortly before serving, add herbs and spices in the last hour, any/all dairy near the end. You'll often need to add cornstarch mixed with a small amount of water or CP liquid as a thickening agent close to the end of the cooking process to get the viscosity you prefer.

    You can bake a cake in a CP but it sticks to the sides unless you tape a cylinder of parchment paper to sides & bottom, removing tape before you plug in the machine.
    CP is particularly helpful for presoaking/reconstituting/cooking any dried beans overnight. Then make any of the Tex/Mex, Mex or bean recipe you like. Waay cheaper than canned.

    http://ekrcdn.com/onegoodthingbyjillee.com/uploads/2014/06/Crockpot-Conversion-Chart.pdf

  2. Debt-free by Thir-ty Says:

    Snafu, thanks so much! Those are excellent tips and exactly the sort of advice I was looking for.

  3. rob62521 Says:

    My advice for slow cooker use is don't fix anything you wouldn't eat normally and expect that you'll like it.

    I have four different size CP's and really, really like them. Snafu is right about it helping with tenderizing the tougher, cheaper meats.

  4. MonkeyMama Says:

    I was trying to link some recipes and I accidentally deleted my post. Ugh! I will put them in my blog...

  5. MonkeyMama Says:

    I have to add that my cooking skills are probably mostly relegated to ground hamburger, as far as meat. The crockpot has definitely made us adventurous with many other cuts of meat. The flavors are incredible.

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