What is your greatest financial temptation? That’s one of the question I asked in a poll at DPL Central. Answer choices: accepting more credit, vacation, clothes, new car, stuff for house, eating out or none-of-the-above.
I enjoy predicting how my reader polls will turn out, but I was way off on this one. I thought “stuff for the house” or “clothes” would win. The runaway winner at 41 percent was “eating out.”
Whether eating out is your top temptation or it comes in second or third, you can deal with it more effectively if you make eating at home more convenient and more delicious than going out.
You know by now that I am a big fan of the slow cooker. Just throw the ingredients in before the demands of the day wear you down, turn it on and forget it. You’ll come home to the aroma of a home cooked meal. You’ll have it on the table and ready to eat in less time than it takes to drive-thru.
Here are my top two favorite slow cooker recipes. I predict they will soon be yours, too.
3 Packets and a Roast
- 1 packet dry ranch dressing mix
- 1 packet dry Italian dressing mix
- 1 packet dry brown gravy mix
- 1 beef roast, any size, any cut
Place the roast in the slow cooker. Sprinkle the dry mixes over roast. Pour 1 cup water into bottom. Cover. Cook on low for 7 hours. Prepare to be amazed that this pot roast will have made its own gravy for you. As a treat. Just because.
Here’s a delicious soup the entire family will love, even the kids!
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1-16 ounce can chili beans, with liquid
- 1-15 ounce can kidney beans with liquid
- 1-15 ounce can whole kernel corn, with liquid
- 1-8 ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 cups water
- 2-14.5 ounce cans peeled and diced tomatoes
- 1-4 ounce can diced green chilies
- 1-1.25 ounce package taco seasoning mix
In a medium skillet brown the ground beef over medium heat. Drain and place in slow cooker along with all other ingredients. Mix to blend. Cook on Low setting for 8 hours. Serves 8. Serve with sour cream, grated cheese and tortilla chips.
This bread is not for the slow-cooker. But it sure takes the drudgery out of baking homemade bread because there’s no need to knead! Just make sure you’ve got the large 32-cup container (like Tupperware) with a lid. You’ll understand why when you read on ….
- 3 pkgs. dry yeast
- 2 eggs
- 10 cups bread flour
- 4 teaspoons salt
- 3 3/4 cups warm water (115 F.)
- 6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
- 6 tablespoons sugar
Dissolve yeast in warm water in a large mixing bowl. Add 3 teaspoons of the sugar, stir; add remaining ingredients. Mix by hand until moist. Seal in large 32-cup container. DO NOT BURP THE BOWL! When seal “pops” loose on its own (don’t use Snapware for this as it will not pop on its own), divide batter into four equal parts and place into greased loaf pans. Cover with towel for 30 minutes and let rise. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake loaves for 30 minutes. Freezes beautifully. For wheat bread use 5 cups white flour and 5 cups whole wheat flour.