Fall is winding down and winter is almost upon us.
This morning while riding the bus I noticed that most deciduous trees are bare and only the most stubborn of leaves are hanging on. The mountain passes are once again being filled with snow, and ski season is so close I can almost taste it. Soon we’ll be decorating our apartment for the holidays, our first Christmas season spent together in the same home.
The changing of the seasons always makes me move a bit slower, taking in each day like a long, slow breath. The kind of breaths you take while sleeping.
The nights are comfortable, quiet, not nearly as busy or loud as summertime evenings. Working and commuting doesn’t leave much time for cooking, but if I plan ahead I can usually get the crock pot going or thaw out a whole chicken to roast for dinner. Braising and slow roasting occur on the weekends, when I have time to plan out our meals and play with different flavor combinations.
Yesterday morning I had the forethought to throw something in the crockpot, knowing I would be home well past dinner time. I was right and barely made the nine o’clock ferry, but was pleased with myself for thinking ahead. There was a pot roast waiting to be cooked, along with some basics – celery, carrots, onion, a splash of broth and some herbs.
Since moving in with Mr. No Sugar I’ve been eating a lot more red meat. A lot for me is 1 to 2 times per week. This is okay for now, since the cold days and nights call for something more hearty. The crock pot is my easiest solution to cooking meat that can be overdone very easily. All I have to do is place all the ingredients in, turn it on, and have faith that when I get home the meat will be easily shredded and all the flavors will meld together.
My lunch today, a poor shot but it gives you an idea.
Slow Cooker Pot Roast:
1 pot roast, chuck roast, rump or round roast. Whatever you can find at the market.
1 yellow onion, chopped roughly.
3 large carrots, peeled, and cut into rounds.
2 celery stalks, chopped roughly.
2-3 garlic cloves, halved.
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1-2 teaspoons thyme
1-2 teaspoons oregano
2-3 bay leaves
1/2-1 cup stock (vegetable, beef, or chicken – whatever is on hand. Use water if you like.)
1/2 cup red wine. I bought cooking wine at the market since we don’t drink much and don’t have any on hand. Whatever you have is great.
Make a bed in the crock pot of the onions, celery, garlic, and carrots. I chop all my vegetables into bite-sized pieces, but you can cut them bigger or smaller. Nestle roast on top of vegetables, add broth and seasonings. Usually I start off easy on the salt and pepper because those can always be added later on, but usually add in a good amount of each spice. Pour cooking wine over top and set on low for 8-10 hours or high for 5-6.
I find my slow cooker (a small one, good for two people) cooks everything better on high and the flavors become more pronounced this way.
Serve with noodles, rice, or any other starch. We don’t add potatoes, due to their high sugar content but they can certainly be added and then picked out for those following a candida diet.