Author Topic: Pandemic hoarding  (Read 240001 times)

Roadrunner53

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Re: Pandemic hoarding
« Reply #1550 on: January 28, 2023, 10:46:27 AM »
I am going to be cooking a pork butt soon in my crockpot I guess. Have not cooked one in a long time. What method do you all use?

Another thing I am curious about is does anyone know if there is a slow cooker out there that offers a fast heat up cycle then can be reset to a high or low temp after an initial fast heat up? For instance, I started a pasta sauce in my slow cooker kind of late in the day and you know how long it takes to get the temperature up so it is bubbling. I was wondering if any slow cooker had a program where you could get the contents heated up quickly then it switches to a low temp for the rest of the duration. Maybe I need to invent one!
I have a spendypants Instant Precision Dutch Oven.  Yes, it's made by the Instant Pot people, but it isn't an Instant pot.  It's an enameled cast iron dutch oven slow cooker that can also be set to sear/saut (400F), braise (starts with high temperature to brown food and then lowers), etc.  There is one slow cooker setting (203F), but the temperature can actually be set anywhere from 77F to 400F (lower temperatures for proofing dough, sous vide, incubating yogurt), although oddly I think the manual 1 setting only goes to 203F and the manual 2 starts at 212F, so they miss a small range in there.  But you can absolutely set it to a temperature that gets your food up to boiling quickly, and then turn it down.  The braise setting does it automatically.

I don't use it for sous vide or anything other than slow cooking, braising, and making stock.  It's fantastic to sear at 400F and then turn it down to slow cook.  I can braise at a slightly higher temperature if I want food cooked faster.

I have a systemic nickel allergy, and the regular Instant Pot insert is 18/10 stainless steel, and I can't eat any food cooked at length in nickel-containing stainless steel.  I use the regular Instant Pot for sous vide, steaming potatoes and sweet potatoes, hard cooking eggs, etc. and to cook food for my family, but I can't eat food that has simmered in it all day.  Before I was diagnosed with the nickel allergy (finally -- answering years of health issues) I gave away my slow cooker to someone who needed one, so I was in the market for a slow cooker and wanted something that did more than the basic ceramic insert model -- in particular I wanted to be able to sear and slow cook in the same vessel, but it couldn't be 18/10 stainless.

Costco sells the Instant Precision dutch oven for $169, which as I said, is spendypants.  But it does exactly what I want it to do.  And while I figure the controls will give out one day, the dutch oven itself can be used without the appliance portion, so it won't be useless.

Most recently I cooked a pork butt in mine.  I salted and seared it, sprinkled garlic and onion powder all over it (after searing so the seasonings wouldn't scorch), and then put it on slow cook and let it go for 7 hours.  It didn't need any added liquid, and turned our beautifully.  I kept the seasonings simple because a pork butt is large for the three of us currently at home, so I wanted to be able to use it in various dishes.

I will have to look into the Instant Precision Dutch Oven. I have found an even MORE spendy pants multi cooker at $209.99 that I am very interested in. It has a stainless steel pot and is similar to an Instant Pot with no pressure cooker feature. It also does not have a concave bottom so the pot is the same shape from top to bottom giving you more space. It is dishwasher safe. I am sure I could put my crock in the dishwasher but I never do. This one sears meat which is a plus. You can control the temp which is what I am looking for.

https://www.amazon.com/HOUSNAT-Programmable-Stainless-Steaming-Adjustable/dp/B09J95V2DG?crid=3Q921AANAIUMV&keywords=housnat+slow+cooker&qid=1660148309&sprefix=housnat+,aps,63&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1&linkCode=sl1&tag=amyleatocoo09-20&linkId=c551aa5e3da8524f4f471b4a6a56d850&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X96UBUk7ENM

Dicey

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Re: Pandemic hoarding
« Reply #1551 on: January 28, 2023, 11:35:51 AM »
Went to Sam's Club at 9:30 am on Wednesday. No eggs, boo.

Roadrunner53

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Re: Pandemic hoarding
« Reply #1552 on: January 28, 2023, 01:31:04 PM »
I had home delivery by Instacart from Costco recently. I am stocking up on potatoes. Bought two 10 lb bags of Yukon Gold potatoes and so far have made about 6 lbs of French Fries wedge potatoes. This is a work in process as I have not gotten the final cook down (after frozen) yet. Seems these potatoes need higher temps than I am cooking them at. I see 450F for about 30 minutes seems to be what is suggested. I will try that next. I used the air fryer and it only goes up to 400 degrees. Next time will be the oven. I also made some great mashed potatoes we had for dinner two nights. There is a little still left. Now I have the other 10 lbs of taters to cook. I have found a scalloped potato recipe that looks good. I might make some regular French fries too. I have my French Fry cutter machine to do that. The only drawback is that these potatoes are pretty small and the fries will be 'shorties'. We shall see. I plan to save about 5 potatoes for my corned beef this coming Thursday. If I don't make the shortie French fries maybe more French fry chunk wedges.

Then I have two 5 lb bags of onions. Will use one for another batch of caramelized onions in crockpot and the other will probably get chopped up and put into the freezer. Last time I flash froze them on a sheet pan in the freezer and that worked out great so they are not all stuck together. Just bagged them up and froze.

Too many times over the years, I have bought onions and potatoes and they go bad before I use them. I really hate that! So now I am trying to find ways to use them so I have them when needed. I have also baked Idaho potatoes, cooled and frozen them too.

Mr. Roadrunner made meatballs and meatloaf the other day! So good! I will be pulling out some of my garden tomato sauce from last year's garden and make spaghetti sauce. Will have some of the meatballs and will throw some of the leftover meatloaf into the pasta sauce. He made 24 meatballs and I froze them in packs of 4 or 5 per bag.

I also had two packages of mushrooms I threw into my crockpot with some butter and cooked them up this week and froze.

Mr. Roadrunner also cooked up 5 lbs of ground beef with onions. I let that cool and made 5 packages for the freezer. They come in so handy! I add them to chili, spaghetti sauce, poor man's stroganoff, stuffed peppers and other stuff.

Polaria, yes, it is better to be prepared. Do the best you can. Worst case, you will have extra food/water you can use up eventually or donate to a food bank, shelter or a goody bag for elderly neighbors.

For small potatoes I like to make cornmeal bbq roast potatoes, I make a big batch on the weekend and have them through the week.  I assume they would freeze beautifully.  Preheat the oven to 450, and line a sheet pan with parchment.  Wash and chunk up the potatoes into bite size pieces, size doesnt matter too much but you want them to cook evenly so keep them more or less the same size.  Put the potatoes in a big bowl and drizzle with some olive oil, very little is needed here, dont drown them.  Toss the potatoes to coat them with the oil, then add a good amount of BBQ spice (I use Clubhouse brand mixes, pretty much any spice mix can be used to change it up), and a good amount of corn meal (basically you want as much spice and corn meal as will stick to the potatoes).  Toss to coat the potatoes then dump them onto the pan in a single layer.  Roast for 20-25 minutes for potatoes up to 1 size.  Stir half way through.

Well, I guess you could say I am a little SLOW but I finally made these cornmeal coated chunked potatoes last night and they were fantastic! I used cayenne pepper instead of BBQ spice but we like stuff hot and it was pleasantly spicy! My oven was in desparate need of cleaning so didn't dare cook in it but used the air fryer. It only goes up to 400 degrees but they came out nice and crunchy-ish from the cornmeal. This is going to be something I will be cooking often. Thank you! My oven in in auto clean mode now so the next batch of taters can be cooked at a higher temp next time! When you rewarm for weeknight meals what is your method? I was thinking air fryer.

Not sure if this was mentioned but have you cooked and frozen these then warmed up at a later date? If so, how did you do it? Would be nice to have a stash in the freezer!

Roadrunner53

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Re: Pandemic hoarding
« Reply #1553 on: January 29, 2023, 05:25:29 PM »
I made my pork butt today and it came out awesome! Found a recipe for the crockpot and followed it precisely. My pork butt cooked on low for 8 hours, 40 minutes and was the perfect temp as the recipe suggests. If you follow the instructions exactly, I think you will have success like I did. This is definitely a keeper recipe!

The pictures are fantastic to see exactly how the recipe is put together.

If you are interested in it, here it is:
https://www.101cookingfortwo.com/crock-pot-pulled-pork-butt-right-way/comment-page-4/?unapproved=105592&moderation-hash=2d4185b7e20e1f22e5c888d4ecc4d656#comment-105592