Tag Archives: slow cooker

27 January 2017: Slow Cooker Chicken and Apple Stew

2017-jan-27_fournightsaweek_0363Every couple of weeks I like to break out my slow cooker. This week, I found a recipe on WholeFoods Market that used chicken thighs; they stand up to long, slow cooking without loosing any of their moist flavor. I’ve owned a couple of slow cookers over the last 30-plus years, starting with a one-piece Presto that made cleaning up a nightmare.  My current version is a round All-Clad 4-quart model with a black ceramic insert and 3 temperature settings (All-Clad’s newest version has an additional one: high start/low finish). Be sure to read the instruction manual carefully in order to avoid ending up with a cracked insert. 

I did make one adjustment to the recipe: since I buy my poultry at organic markets where I can be assured of the quality (no antibiotics, thank you), even thighs can be pretty pricey. I used half as much poultry as the recipe called for and didn’t miss the extra one bit. The link to Whole Foods Market’s original recipe is here.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 tsp whole fennel seeds
  • 3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs (I used 1 lb.)
  • 3 firm, sweet baking apples (like Braeburn or Gala); peeled, cored and cut into 6 wedges each
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes (10 oz each), peeled and cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks
  • 1 large sweet onion, halved and sliced
  • 2 TBSP fresh (yes, it’s worth it) sage leaves
  • 1 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 3/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper

Method

  1. Toast fennel seeds in small skillet over medium heat until fragrant (about 2 mins).
  2. Cut chicken thighs in half.
  3. Add chicken, fennel seeds and ALL the rest of the remaining ingredients to a slow cooker.
  4. Cover and cook until chicken and apples are very tender, (6-7 hours on LOW or 3-3.5 hours on High)
  5. Serves 6-8
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21 July 2015 African-Style Chicken Stew, Slow Cooker Style

It’s been a hot week in New England and that makes cooking more of a chore. This week I had planned a West African Chicken Stew – something I’ve made several times – but rather than add heat to an already hot kitchen, I decided to pull out my slow cooker. DSC_0577

I get a feeling of accomplishment when preparing a slow cooker meal. For one thing, once it is set up, there’s no more cooking prep to do.  And the aroma of what’s in the cooker fills our space for most of the day.

This recipe is an amalgam of sorts. The original recipe was adapted from Mark Bittman’s VB6 Cookbook, but the cooking method came from this link ReadySetEat.com. Peanut butter, sweet potatoes and chicken – tasty, enjoyable and filling.

African Style Chicken Stew

adapted from Mark Bittman, The VB6 Cookbook

INGREDIENTS:

2 Tbsp oil (I use coconut oil)

1 lb skinless, boneless chicken thighs

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 Tbsp minced garlic

1 Tbsp minced ginger

Pinch of red pepper flakes

1/4 cup chunky peanut butter

1 onion, thinly sliced

2 (approximate) cups water or vegetable stock

1 1-lb can chopped tomatoes, undrained

1/2 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

1 lb kale or other greens

1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts (garnish)

Method

1. Prepare the sweet potatoes and onions. Add to the bottom of a slow cooker (I spray the cooker insert so things don’t stick). Prep garlic and ginger.

2. Add oil to a 10-inch skillet, Add garlic and ginger and let these cook for a minute or so being careful not to burn them.  Add the chicken thighs and brown (5-10 minutes). Sprinkle with red pepper flakes (if using)

3. Add peanut butter to the pan and allow it to melt. Now add about 1/2 cup water or stock to thin the mixture. Mix and then add in the can of chopped tomatoes (do not drain the juices out).  Mix well and be sure to coat the pieces of chicken thigh.

4. Add this pan mixture to the slow cooker, layering it on top of the sweet potatoes and onions.  Add water/stock to cover the sweet potato layer (about another 1 1/2 cups). Cover the slow cooker and set on high for 7-9 hours. Add additional stock/water throughout the cooking process if things seem to dry out.

5. About 15-20 minutes before serving, add the greens to the slow cooker, stir and recover. Continue cooking until the greens are wilted.

6. Adjust seasonings as needed at time of serving and serve in bowls. Garnish with chopped roasted peanuts.


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