Crock Pot season has arrived at our house. Most people think of the crock pot as a fall/winter appliance. Not me. I live in a small house. I can and have heated my house with my oven. Making macaroni and cheese on the stovetop fogs up all the windows in the house. So you see, as the weather warms up I don’t want the extra heat from using my oven. It will only be used on cool, rainy days from now until October. Unless there is a brownie emergency – I can’t let that go unresolved. What kind of a mother would I be?
Also, this is a very busy time of year for everyone. T-ball practice, field work, yard work, baby goats. We don’t spend time in the house anymore. So I want food waiting for us when we do come in 10 minutes before bedtime.
Over the past months I have been stashing crock pot recipes in the back of my ‘Sounds good-let’s try it’ folder. It was time to bring those out and plug in my crock pot. I have a beautiful one. It has every gadget and gizmo you could imagine! I got a new off-brand crock pot for Christmas a couple of years ago. It had a short in it and blew a breaker in our house. Thank the Lord it didn’t start a fire! So I took that one back and bought a Crock Pot. There was one with a hinged lid that I thought was a great idea! Took it home and the hinge melted off the lid. There was nothing else wrong with it so I kept using it. I thought I might as well write to the Crock Pot company and let them know the hinge didn’t work. They sent me a new , top of the line Crock Pot and a letter of apology. It worked. It has sealed my loyalty to the Crock Pot brand for life and I will sing their praises from a mountain top in Austria. I’m no Julie Andrews, but I am loud!
If you read this blog very often you might notice that I have been cyber-stalking someone. Pioneer Woman? That goes without saying. That’s like saying you like chocolate cake. My new obsession is 4littleFergusons. Tonya is cute, funny, a great mommy, and a great cook. When I look at the pictures she posts I notice something curious. She has four kids and not one thing out of place in her house. I have been searching her photos lately, and I can’t find a single piece of fuzz or stray lego anywhere. (sigh) Maybe if I keep reading she will divulge some ancient secret about how she does it. I hope she doesn’t say she works hard, because I’m not interested in doing that.
Ok, now I’ll get to the favorite food part. Last night I made Tonya’s Italian Beef Sandwiches. It was everything I ever wanted in a hot sandwich. Stomped my foot and rolled my eyes good. The meat was very flavorful and juicy, the bun was buttery and crispy. The juices dripped off my chin. I was too busy eating to bother taking a picture so you’ll have to trust me and just make this. It really is healthy food too. Well, healthy for us. Except for the butter on the buns – but don’t skip that. That would ruin everything.
The only drawback to this recipe is if you stay home while it is cooking. I had to leave because I couldn’t handle smelling this without eating this. Are you ready to start?
Italian Beef Sandwiches by 4littlefergusons
4 cups beef broth
1 1/2 tsp black pepper
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 1/2 tsp basil
1 1/2 tsp onion powder
1 1/2 tsp parley
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 bay leaf
2 envelopes Italian Salad Dressing
3 pounds chuck roast – I have no idea how big mine was, just so long as it fits in the crock pot
Mix up all of the stuff listed before the roast, pour it over the roast and put it on low for 12 hours.
Take the lid off about an hour before you’re ready to eat and shred the roast. Do NOT take a little bite right now. That will lead to another and another and another. I can’t tell you how I know this. I just do. Trust me – put the lid back on NOW! Go back outside and try to forget what you have just seen.
One hour later come back into the house and butter your buns and fry them up until crispy. Put on a healthy amount of meat, add some cheese and eat. I dare you not to roll your eyes back in your head and stomp your foot when you eat this! I double dog dare you!
Oh, and while you are visiting Tonya at 4littlefergusons print her recipe for Taco Pie. We are having that for supper tonight. Yum!