Posts Tagged With: zucchini

This Week

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Crockpot Cowboy Stew

It seemed a good idea to have something prepared in case we invited people over after church on Sunday night. People stand between the pews and talk for even an hour after the service has ended. Sometimes we get hungry and have to decide whether to abandon the conversation or to invite friends to continue it over something to eat.

For these sort of situations a crockpot meal is a good option. You can prepare it ahead of time, and the dish isn’t likely to be over or under done when you come home.

Also, the heat and humidity have been high these past few weeks, so it was best not to fry, boil, or bake something for guests.

The following recipe explains what I put together on Sunday afternoon.  We did stay talking to people after church, but we didn’t end up inviting anyone over. Alas. It might have been too spicy for most folks.  We like it a lot, though. It is spicy, but the flavor of the beef and the red wine still come through. Leftovers served well for lunch the next day.

IMG_3173Cowboy Stew

serves 4-5


1 large onion, sliced
1 large jalapeno, thinly sliced
1 T garlic, minced

1 lb. Aldi beef for carne picada
2 T flour
1 T chili powder
Valentina’s fruit seasoning (citrusy chile flakes)
1/4 t dried oregano flakes

14.5 oz can Aldi salsa-style fire roasted tomatoes

1/2 c red wine
1 beef boullion cube + 1 c water
2 T tomato paste

2 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and cut into 1-inch slices (2 cups)


Place the onion, jalapeno, and garlic in the bottom of the crockpot. In a separate bowl or large plastic bag, mix the beef with the flour, chili powder, Valentina’s seasoning, and oregano. Toss these ingredients until the beef is coated. Put this beef mixture on top of the vegetables in the crockpot.

Pour the tomatoes over the beef.

In a small dish, combine the red wine, beef boullion, and tomato paste.  Pour this into the crockpot. Do Not Stir.

Let the stew cook on High for  4 1/2 hrs.

Right before you are ready to serve the stew, fry the zucchini in oil or butter. Add the fried zucchini to the stew and stir it before ladeling it into dishes. If you prefer not to fry the zucchini, the recipe book actually said to just add it to the crockpot during the last 30 minutes of cooking.

Serve with sour cream.

First try I served with it arepas.  Could be good with mashed potatoes. The book recommended creamy polenta.


Based on a ecipe called Cowboy Stew Over Creamy Polenta from Heartland Cooking Crockery Favorites Traditional American Recipes  by Frances Towner Giet


Categories: beef, Food and drink, Meat, Soup | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Apple-Walnut-Zucchini Bread

Page 43 and 44 of my Betty Crocker’s New Cookbook is missing. A couple of sheets of folded copier paper mark the place. Since the instructions for making quick breads would have been there, I had to print some recipes from the internet. One of them is called “Mom’s Zucchini Bread” and is from the site.

Like most good users, I never follow the recipe exactly. This time my first adjustment was to scale everything down to one-third. Even then, I was short on the key ingredient. There was only one zucchini in my refrigerator so a few chopped, sautéed apple chunks had to balance out what was lacking in the measurement of shredded green squash. As long as I was tweaking the recipe, I thought that I might as well substitute sweet sorghum flour for half of the “all-purpose” flour called for in the ingredients list. The ground cardamom in my cupboard tempted me, but I stuck with just plain cinnamon this time around.

Which substitution was the magic ingredient, I can only guess. Something made the final product incredibly moist. So moist that I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to slice it without it falling to pieces. To be safe, I wrapped each piece, individually, in plastic wrap.

My husband was hoping that it would be something to spread butter on, but this batch doesn’t need it.


½ c all-purpose flour
½ c sweet sorghum flour
¼ t salt
¼ t baking soda
¼ t baking powder
1 t ground cinnamon
1 egg
1/3 c vegetable oil
¾ c white sugar
1 t vanilla
2/3 c combination of shredded zucchini and chopped apple
1/3 c chopped walnuts

Oil a glass bread pan. Preheat the oven to 325*F.
Sift together dry ingredients. Whisk together the egg, oil, vanilla and sugar.
Add dry ingredients.
Stir in zucchini and walnuts until just moist.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake for 40 to 60 minutes, or until the top center no longer wiggles or looks wet.
Cool the bread in the pan on a rack for 20 minutes.
Remove the bread from the pan and allow it to cool completely before you cut it.

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