It's been a bit slow in the kitchen this past week as far as recipes go.
I've gotten some use out of my Crock-Pot. Have I mentioned how much I love that thing?!
I cooked up my first batch of dried beans! I am so proud of myself! Anyone that knows me, knows how much I love beans! The fact that I am such a bean lover and only ever prepared them by using canned beans is amazing to me.
Wanting to attempt cooking dried beans, I bought a 2 lb. bag of pinto beans from Aldi. Two years ago. I bought them, then felt intimidated by them. So, I ignored them and let them just sit there in my pantry. Doing nothing.
Then, I found out that beans shouldn't sit for more than a year. After that, they don't soften. Great. Just great.
Since Joe does a lot of the food shopping, there's no way I can convince him to buy more dried beans if I throw this 2 year old bag of beans away. So, I attempted to cook them anyway. Fully prepared for failure.
They turned out great! After they were done cooking (in my Crock-Pot) I seasoned them a bit and let them cook a little bit longer. I served the beans over rice with corn muffins on the side. A perfectly filling, meatless meal for Ash Wednesday.
We made refried beans out of the leftovers and have several containers full in the freezer for taco dinners.
I will post in more detail about cooking the beans and also the refried beans. This time I really just threw stuff in and didn't measure a thing. Next time, I need to measure and write it all down, so I know what the heck I'm talking about! And of course, I'll have to remember to take pictures.
I also used my Crock-Pot to cook some split chicken breast. I cooked it and diced it to use in future meals. With the cooking juices and bones, I made more chicken broth! Two quarts of homemade chicken broth! MMmmmm! I see chicken rice soup and croquettes in my future.
I made more vegetable broth. Again, in the Crock-Pot. I think I made about 10 cups of veggie broth. That will be perfect to add to some minestrone soup I forgot was in the freezer. I remember that I made it a bit thick and that it would need to have some broth added when served again. Perfect. I think this will be on the menu for this week's Lenten Friday meal.
I did try a new recipe. I bought a 5 lb. bag of carrots a couple of weeks ago. I have no idea what I thought I needed 5 lbs. of carrots, but the price was low and I wanted carrots. Impulse buy, I guess.
Anway, I made a carrot and sweet potato soup on Friday. I need to gather my notes, so that I can post the recipe soon.
Now that I think about it, maybe the kitchen wasn't so slow after all!