December 1, 2013

The Crock Pot is my Best Friend

So, as I posted earlier, 2013 kinda sucked for us. It started off with about 11 weeks of craziness as I left one job for another. Then it became 35 weeks of stress, craziness, medical appointments, learning the new job, and doing it all without much sick or vacation time accrued.  

(side note, figuring out that I've spent 35 weeks of this year dealing with cancer- yeah - eye opening and sucky!)

Shortly after starting my new job and enduring an hour commute each way instead of 20 minutes, I discovered I would have to learn how to do a better job at preparing meals that were 1. quicker, 2. easier, and 3. could be made ahead of time.

I started breaking out the crock pot more and more and relying on using a roasted chicken for the whole week for meals, or meatloaf, or a roast.  

One of our favorite things we made during that 35 weeks had to be the Crock Pot Picadillo from Skinnytaste. First off, we love Gina's blog - everything we've made from there is delicious and this is no different!  And the Picadillo is the perfect blend of flavors that we just love.

And a plus - this makes a TON of food and gave us two dinners worth and frozen leftovers for lunches later in the month.

I think it's time to put this on the menu again soon!

How we made this in the Realistic Eats kitchen

  • 2 1/2 lbs 93% lean ground beef
  • 1 cup minced onion
  • 1 cup diced cubanelle pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup minced cilantro
  • 1 small tomato, diced
  • 8 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup alcaparrado (manzanilla olives, pimientos, capers) or green olives - We couldn't find alcaparrado - so we used olives with pimientos and some capers just measured out to make a 1/4 cup.
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 bay leaves
  • kosher salt and fresh pepper, to taste

Here's where I strayed - I didn't brown the meat first - I tossed EVERYTHING in the crock pot and let it go! It was fabulous! And Easy - did I mention EASY!!!

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