Archive for September, 2013


Whole Roast Crockpot Chicken

Categories: Food & Cooking

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This chicken can make an impressive meal for a larger family with minimal effort. It’s hard to believe a whole chicken will cook through in a slow cooker, but by sitting in the crockpot for four hours it becomes tender, moist and pulls apart easily. By placing the chicken under the broiler with olive oil brushed on it, you’re creating a crispy, golden skin to complement the tender meat. The juices at the bottom of the crockpot can then be used to make gravy for potatoes or to add on top!

This dish looks fancy, but you’ll be surprised how easy to make. Who says weeknight meals can’t at least look like gourmet affairs?

What you’ll need:

  • 4- 5 pound whole chicken, or whatever size you can fit in your crockpot relatively easily
  • 1 lemon
  • 3- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 8 whole cloves of garlic
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbs olive oil

  1. Clean off the chicken and remove giblets from inside. Place the chicken in the middle of a folded sheet of aluminum that is still big enough to stick out of crockpot when it’s placed inside.
  2. Slice the lemon in half and place one half, sliced- side down, in the middle of the crockpot. Cut the other half of the lemon into quarters.
  3. Stuff the chicken’s cavity with the fresh rosemary, thyme, quartered lemon and peeled garlic cloves. Sprinkle the whole chicken with salt and pepper.
  4. Place foil and chicken in the center of the crockpot so the chicken is resting in the middle and the foil is sticking out enough on either side of the crockpot to use as handles later. The chicken should be propped up above the bottom of the crockpot by the sliced lemon at the bottom. Try to keep the chicken from touching the sides of your crockpot.
  5. Fold the foil under the lid of your crockpot and cook the chicken, on high for about four hours.
  6. Using the foil handles, lift the chicken onto a large pan when it’s done in the crockpot. Brush olive oil over the skin of the chicken and re- apply salt and pepper if needed.
  7. Place the chicken under your broiler for about 5 to 8 minutes or until the skin is golden brown and crackling.
  8. Let rest for 10 minutes before carving.

Warm Spiced Pumpkin Bread

Categories: Food & Cooking

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When the seasons change and there’s suddenly a slight chill in the air, you can bet that everyone is craving earthy, sweet pumpkin with warm spices. This pumpkin bread is simple to make, full of essential vitamins and minerals (thanks to the pureed pumpkin), and tastes moist and rich. Slather some almond butter on it and you can give it to your child as part of their breakfast. Sprinkle some cinnamon sugar on it and you have yourself a delicious fall dessert.

For an added twist on this recipe, you can fold in chocolate chips, crushed walnuts, or dried fruit right before pouring it into the pan and baking it.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup white granulated sugar
  • ½ cup or one stick of softened, unsalted butter
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cup canned pumpkin

  1. Preheat your oven to 350° F.
  2. Line your small (6 cup or 8 ½ by 4 ½  inch) bread loaf pan with parchment paper or with butter and flour.
  3. Mix together your flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and pumpkin pie spice in a large bowl until well combined.
  4. In a separate bowl, whip your brown and white sugars with the room- temperature butter.
  5. Once the butter- sugar mix has become creamy, beat in the eggs, one at a time and add the vanilla extract.
  6. Spoon the flour mixture into the wet ingredients while continuing to mix until just combined.
  7. Stir the pumpkin puree in gently, without beating the mixture further.
  8. Pour the batter into your prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes or until you can insert a toothpick into the loaf and pull it out clean.
  9. Cool for 10- 15 minutes and serve with cream cheese, butter, or a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar.

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