Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Crock Pot’

Eye of the Goat Beans

August 29, 2012 3 comments

Eye of the Goat Beans

Last week, I was fortunate enough to be Freshly Pressed. It was an unexpected honor and I am thankful for the exposure. I am thrilled about new readers and grateful to my faithful followers who have been with me since the beginning. I appreciate the comments and the feedback and hope you will continue reading. I’m excited about upcoming changes to The Flaming Pot Holder – launching a Facebook page, changing the layout of the blog, categorizing recipes, improving my photos, etc. Ok, enough happy gushing, time for a recipe…

We first tried eye of the goat beans (a.k.a. goat eye beans) last year and loved them. We buy Gourmet Valley’s Eye of the Goat Beans. I really like this brand of heirloom beans. They have a nice variety of interesting beans – Scarlet Runner Beans, Christmas Lima Beans, Red Calypso Beans, Green Flageolet Beans, etc. One day, we hope to grow some of these varieties.

Gourmet Valley
Eye of the Goat Beans

Eye of the goat beans are similar in texture to black-eyed peas and pinto beans. They have a rich, firm texture that can hold up to long, slow cooking times. And they do look a lot like goat eyes. I know this personally, because we had two pet pygmy goats when I was growing up (even though we lived on Monte Sano in the city limits of Huntsville). Goats were frowned upon, so Mom told folks they were funny looking dogs with a weird bark :). They had beautiful eyes, similar looking to these beans.

There is a recipe on the package for drunken beans that sounds delicious, but it has beer and mushrooms. I’m avoiding gluten and “fungusy” foods so I decided to create my own version with produce from our garden. I added some fresh diced tomatoes and a little tomato paste. This made a rich broth, but it was also a tad sweet. Something to think about when you are making the beans. This “recipe” is just a guide; please adjust it to your taste. We like spicy food, so I added several hot peppers, feel free to leave them out if you don’t want it spicy. I used a crock pot, but a large heavy covered pot or Dutch oven would also work great.

I served the beans with basmati rice, made with a new technique courtesy of Peri’s Spice Ladle. She recently posted her Step-by-Step Guide to Cooking Perfect Basmati Rice and I had to try it. I was intrigued since I had never used a microwave to cook rice. It worked very well! I added some saffron and it was a perfect accompaniment to the beans. I’ve been struggling with Thai sticky rice with mango, I wonder if this technique would work in lieu of a rice steamer or cooker?!? Hmm, I’m thinking a future post.  Hope you can find these beans (I have bought them at Whole Foods and Earth Fare) and you will give the recipe a try…

Eye of the Goat Beans
and Basmati Rice

Eye of the Goat Beans (Print recipe)

12 ounces eye of the goat beans

Water

2-3 tablespoons olive oil (or oil of your choice)

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 medium onion, chopped

½ cup carrots, chopped

½ cup bell peppers, chopped (I used two small yellow and green peppers)

½ cup celery, chopped (including some leaves)

5 hot peppers, chopped (or to taste)

1 cup tomatoes, chopped

2 tablespoons tomato paste (optional, will add sweetness)

3 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon pepper (black, cayenne, or Aleppo)

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Garnish: Basmati rice, chopped fresh herbs (parsley or cilantro), and hot pepper (Aleppo or hot pepper flakes)

Pick through the beans to make sure there are no pebbles. Rinse the beans, drain them, and put in a crock pot. Cover with about two inches of water. Soak overnight. Drain. Pick through the beans again (just to make sure there are no bad ones you missed the first time). Cover with fresh water. Cook for 2 hours on medium or high. The temperature depends on how powerful your crock pot is; ours is old so I put it on high.

While the beans are cooking, wash and chop your veggies. Then, in a large frying pan, sauté the vegetables in the olive oil. Cook until the veggies are slightly tender. Stir in the tomato paste, salt, pepper, and cumin. Add this mixture to the beans in the crock pot. Cover. Cook for about 2-3 more hours, stirring occasionally. Check periodically for doneness. You can turn it to low when the beans are almost tender. Serving suggestion: serve with Basmati rice, fresh herbs, and an extra sprinkle of hot pepper.

Coming soon: what to make with leftover eye of the goat beans…

Advertisements

Fruity Crock Pot Oatmeal

February 29, 2012 2 comments

The second Monday in February is National Oatmeal Monday and October 29th is National Oatmeal Day.  So depending on your perspective, this blog post is either a few weeks late or several months early!  Either way, hope you like oatmeal as much as we do.  We eat a lot of oatmeal.  We like rolled oats, steel cut oats, granola, oatmeal cookies, oatmeal bars, and even instant oatmeal (nothing wrong with Kirkland’s organic instant oatmeal packets in a pinch).

Our favorite type of oatmeal is steel cut oats, especially in the winter. Unfortunately, they take a little longer to cook so they are usually saved for weekends. But with this recipe, you can enjoy them any day of the week.  They cook in a crock pot while you sleep!  Or for something different, you can make them in the morning and have delicious oatmeal for dinner.

I tend to like oatmeal that has texture and bite to it, while Matt likes it creamy.  This oatmeal turns out creamy, with a tapioca-like consistency.  If you use dried cherries, they make the oatmeal reddish brown (dried blueberries make it an interesting purplish brown color). It’s not the prettiest oatmeal, but it is tasty and hearty.

Update:  I had an aha moment while storing the leftover oatmeal:  this oatmeal is a little too creamy and sticky (for my taste, though Matt seems to like it just like it is).  To change the texture, next time I will rinse the oats a few times in a strainer before I add them to the crock pot.  I do this sometimes with basmati rice and it seems to keep the rice from clumping together. I think the oatmeal would benefit from this step, so time to update the recipe…

Fruity Crock Pot Oatmeal

1 cup steel cut oats (I like McCann’s Irish Oatmeal)

½ cup dried fruit (cranberries, cherries, apples, apricots, figs, dates, or blueberries)

4 cups water

½ cup half-and-half (or milk, soy milk, coconut milk, or almond milk)

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 tablespoons maple syrup, honey, or agave (optional)

2 tablespoon butter or vegan margarine (optional)

¼-½ teaspoon cinnamon

few grates of fresh nutmeg

pinch of salt

Optional toppings:  chopped fresh apple, bananas, shredded coconut, raisins (I think they get too squishy if you cook them overnight), almonds, pecans, walnuts, fresh blueberries or peaches, butter, brown sugar, honey, apple butter (my brother’s favorite oatmeal topping!), half-and-half, maple syrup cinnamon, etc. The possibilities are almost endless!

Rinse the oats in a strainer under running water.  Drain.  Put the oats into the crock pot.  Add the remaining ingredients (except for the optional toppings).  Stir well. Cover with the lid. Cook on low for 5-8 hours. Stir. Serve.  This is great as-is or served with some of the optional toppings. 

Note about the photo:  I’m not much for breakfast foods in the morning (I prefer them around lunch or dinner). So the idea of taking an appetizing photo of brown oatmeal in the morning, before coffee, was daunting and not very appealing.  This photo is bad!  Sorry. But please do not let it dissuade you from making the oatmeal.  It tastes better than it looks (it would have to!).

Post 2/13 – Hot Buttered Rum Toddy

January 7, 2012 2 comments

This is a nice hot beverage, perfect for cold winter nights, like the ones we’ve had recently.  One of the versatile things about this recipe is that it can be alcoholic or non-alcoholic.  It is completely adaptable!  Leave out the rum and then let everyone customize his or her own drink.  It also makes a nice addition to coffee!  Added bonus:  it makes the house smell great while it is cooking away in the crock pot.  We made a few batches over the holidays and kept it in Mason jars in the refrigerator.  It looks a little weird with the floating butter beads, but it heats up fine.

2 cups dark brown sugar (light brown sugar works too, but the color isn’t as pretty)

1/2 cup butter

1 teaspoon Kosher salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 cinnamon sticks or a small handful of cinnamon chunks (I love Penzeys!)*

6 whole cloves

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

2 quarts hot water

16 ounces gold or spiced rum (brandy would probably also work)

Lightly sweetened whipped cream, optional

Extra cinnamon sticks, optional garnish

Combine the brown sugar, butter, salt, vanilla, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and hot water in a 5-quart crock pot.  Cover and cook on low for about 4-6 hours.  Ladle into mugs and add rum to taste.  For an extra decadent toddy, add a small dollop of whipped cream with a sprinkle of fresh nutmeg.

*If you do not have cinnamon sticks or chunks, I think ground cinnamon would also work.  Start with ¼ teaspoon, taste,  and add more as needed.