Monday, February 8, 2010

RECIPE: Slow Cooker Chocolate Hot Mess

I got snowed in this weekend, so I decided to convert my boredom into a sugar rush. Pretty sure I gained two pounds in the process, but whatevs. I'm just stoked because I got to use the cocoa powder I accidentally bought in Holland, thinking it was hot chocolate. Oops.

This recipe is a two-parter, so put your domestic hat on...

1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup water
2 T. cocoa powder
....and bring it to a boil.

1 box of brownie mix (I like the fudgy kind)
2 eggs
1/3 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup applesauce (this makes it healthy...right?)
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup chocolate chips
....and pour the batter into a greased slow cooker.

Dump the boiling sugar-goo over the batter, but don't mix it in. Cook the whole thing on HIGH for about two hours, but check it periodically so it doesn't overcook. Same way you'd check brownies -- stick a toothpick in it and see if it comes up clean. Really, this is just a hybrid of molten lava cake and fudge brownies. It ain't pretty, but if you serve it hot with ice cream, it's perfection.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

RECIPE: Easy-Cheesy Potatoes

Velveeta is like my bad-boy crush. I know it's wrong, but I can't resist. I was in a comfort-food mood last night, so these scalloped potatoes are full of bad choices. I'll do penance at the gym next week, I promise.
  • 2 cans of sliced white potatoes (low-sodium)
  • 6-8 slices of bacon
  • 1 cup shredded asiago cheese
  • a cup or two of cubed Velveeta (about 2/3 of the big bar)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup skim milk
Fry the bacon; don't spill the fat on the hot burner and almost burn down your kitchen like I did. Shred it and add it to your slow cooker with all the other ingredients. Cook on LOW for 2 hours, or until the cheese is all melty. It may seem a little thin while it's cooking, but once you remove the lid and let it cool for a minute or two, the "pasteurized cheese product" will magically attempt to reconstitute itself, creating a thick, gooey sauce. Yum.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

RECIPE: Bootleg Chili

Some chili purists believe that real chili shouldn't have beans. But purity's never been my strong point. And when it comes to beans, my personal policy is: The more, the merrier. So here's my recipe for thick, meaty chili with just a little bit of kick -- not enough kick to put hair on your chest or anything, but enough to make it interesting.
  • 1 lb. ground turkey (or beef, if you want to keep it real)
  • 1 can kidney beans (Goya oh boya!)
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes (I like Del Monte with zesty jalapenos)
  • 1 can (6 oz) tomato paste
  • 1 can (14 oz) stewed tomatoes (I go for low-sodium)
  • 1 can (10 oz) Campbell's tomato soup concentrate
  • 1 1/2 T. chili powder
  • 1 T. minced garlic
  • 1/2 T. cumin
  • 1 t. crushed red pepper
  • pinch of black pepper

Brown the ground turkey, then add everything to your slow cooker. Cook on LOW for a couple of hours -- doesn't really matter, because the meat's already cooked. For me, 3 hours did the trick. I served it with Italian boule bread, but any carbolicious dipping tool will do!