Malto Mario


The Lady & Sons

1,000 Italian Recipes

Saturday, March 29, 2008

WCC No. 26 Round-Up - Pressure Cookers, Dutch Ovens and Crockpots - Oh My!


Well right off the bat before I say anything else.. Ya'll are AMAZING! The quality of recipes that landed in my email inbox pretty much blew me away and I truly cannot wait to try each and every one them out myself! Thank you so much to everyone who participated.. the variety in this round-up will surely hold a recipe or TEN of interest to all who read through it. :)

If you just landed on the planet or if the sun is blocking your view of the title to this post, I am talking about this month's Weekend Cookbook Challenge. The WCC is the baby of one of my most favorite people in all the world, Sara. Sara came up with this idea three years ago and it's been going strong ever since. The WCC is one of my most favorite events, and probably the only event that I can say I participate in as often as I can. I love the themes that are picked, this event always feels laid back and fun and I rarely feel pressured - because 9 out of 10 times, the theme chosen is usually broad enough that I never have a hard time finding a recipe that will work. Thanks for that, past and future hostesses and hosts! :D

So for my inaugural hosting gig (I say that because I hope there will be future months where I can host again! hee!) I chose "Pressure Cookers, Dutch Ovens and Crockpots" as my way of saying BUH BYE WINTER. A last send off to the chilly winds, oppresive blankets of snow and the hateful freezing rains that coat everything in a hard shell of slippery ice.. screw that noise! I want the first flowers of Spring! I want the trees to start budding! I want the sun to shine again! And for those of you who have winter waiting right around the corner.. think of this round-up as a bevy of deliciousness that you can refer back to on those cold mornings or evenings when you just want something quick, easy, tasty and comforting for dinner. :)

Starting off our "it's been nice, winter - now go the fakk away" round-up is:

One of the funniest gals on the block.. a New Yorker turned Londonite (word?) and loving it.. and one gal who ALWAYS makes me drool through my laughter, AnneMarie of Ambrosia and Nectar. AnneMarie decided to make a very sexy George Clooney taking one of his pot bellied pigs for a walk. Wait. Did she even cook anything? George was mentioned.. I just.. zoned.. AHA! A most delicious dish of Chicken, White Wine, Saffron, Pine Nuts and Raisins! Yes it's all coming back to me now.. this screams elegance to me.. light and delicious that would be just as wonderful in winter as it would be in summer. A stunner, AnneMarie (and no, I'm not talking about George this time) - thank you my love! :)

I just realized this round-up is full of Ohioans! Our first represent is Fran of Apples Peaches Pumpkin Pie. Welcome Fran!! And what a way to represent what I fondly call, The Armpit of the Midwest, than this beautiful presentation of Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers. Wow, they are just so pretty and what a fabulous way to use some of the bounty from our garden this summer! I look forward! Thank you! Thank you!

Gretchen of Canela & Comino has shared with us a recipe for Spicy Pulled Pork and reminds us that, indeed, the crockpot is not just for winter! And she's right.. the crockpot is a perfect vessel to make delicious meals without heating up your kitchen/house on a scorching July day. And what better mid-summer night's dinner, while the sun sets and the day gets slightly cooler.. some spicy tacos! Fantabulous! Thank you so much for the recipe and the reminder, Gretchen. :)

IvonneRice pudding 2
Awww my sweet sister and partner in crime, my beautiful co-founder of the Daring Bakers, Ivonne, took some time away from everything that is going on in her life right now to make us this delicious and OHMYGODIWANTSOMENOW Rice Pudding with Dulce de Leche. Hello? Me.. over here.. holding a spoon.. I want some. Now. Please? Thank you so much, sweetheart. :)

Here's a lil ah-spicy Italian Meat-ah Ball Chicken Cacciatore made by Erin of Dinner and Dessert! You sure know the way to my heart, Erin.. I love love love Chicken Cacciatore! And I haven't had it since my mom made it years ago. Whenever I crave it, the thought of a long cooking time usually changes my mind, because I don't have the time after work, but throwing it all in the crockpot is genius! Well done! Thank you so much for sharing with us! :D

A very Happy Baker, SaraLynn the adorable, brings our first boozy delight.. and when I say delight, I mean the total pig out, game on, man (and woman) pleaser and tummy filler upper.. Brats in Beer! Yum! We make these often, but usually grill top.. which means not so much in the winter.. again, the crockpot sure does come in handy! Toss those beautiful brats, thinly sliced onions and a whole lotta beer in the crockpot one afternoon and a few short hours later when the grumbellies start making some noise - you've got dinner! Fantastic! Thank you SaraLynn! :D

SaraProvencalVegetables SaraHerbedNewPotatoes
Well well.. here we are.. it's Sara. The love of my life. The apple of my eye. The cream in my coffee.. Sara who started it all with i like to cook and then WOW'd the blogging world with her Weekend Cookbook Challenge! The WCC is one of the longest running monthly foodie events and by the looks of it - and how hard it was to find an open month to host :P - has no signs of stoppin' any time soon! Which makes me a very happy camper. As do these amazing veggie dishes.. Oh how I loves me my veggies.. Firstly (yes, not 1 but 2 dishes) she made Provencal Vegetables from Bouchon, one of her many cookbooks. Would you just take a moment and thank the cast iron Gods for such sexiness? Something that looks that good can only make foods taste so much better.. and Thomas Keller behind the recipe can't hurt much either, right? :D As promised, her second dish is Herbed New Potatoes from everyone's favorite barefooted Contessa. hee! Those are some tots that I could eat every night for dinner - hell they'd be perfect for lunch and/or breakfast! YUM! Thank you so much for allowing me to host! For two fabulous veggie recipes from two fabulous cookbooks! And for just bein' my friend. xoxo

A loyal participator in the WCC is the very awesome, Michelle, of Je Mange la Ville. I've been lurking on Michelle's blog for a couple years now and have made some of her recipes - always a treat! On St. Patrick's Day, she and her hubby celebrated with an authentic MEXICAN meal! heeee! Always keepin' those leprechauns on their toes! And whoooo baby, does this crockpot fiesta look amazing! Pinto Picadillio is what it's called. I call it fabulous! Thanks so much, Michelle!

Judy's Gross Eats - Moroccan Chick
Judy of Judy's Gross Eats has joined in! Yay! Judy who should change the name of her blog to "Judy's DELICIOUS Eats" because there's not one gross recipe anywhere! Especially this Moroccan Chicken! There is absolutely nothing in this recipe that I don't adore and I so look forward to making this. I know Hubbs will love it too. Thank you, Judy! You're a doll! An absolutely non-gross doll! :)

Peter from Kalofagas is slingin Okra around his pressure cooker.. two things I'd naught thought to join together. Hmm.. and Peter tells us that Okra is also very popular in Greek cuisine. Another thing I didn't know. Well, not only was it a day of learning a few things, but also a day of excitment as Peter submitted Okra Two Ways! Both dishes look divine - thank you so much, Peter! :)

Talk about re-thinking the uses of a pressure cooker.. honestly, I thought it was all about liquids and meats.. no sauces.. no vegetables.. and then I came upon a lovely email in my out box from KC of Kits Chow. KC submitted this recipe for Braised Short Ribs, which in and of itself is a lil slice of heaven on a plate! But I couldn't help myself in wandering around her blog for a while.. she makes all kinds of things with her Pressure Cooker - she uses a steamer basket and a ceramic bowl and creates all kinds of culinary deliciousness! Thank you so much, KC! I am officially hooked on your blog. :D

One of Germany's most gifted and lovely cooks as well as a long standing member of the WCC, Ulrike of K├╝chenlatein! As always Ulrike brings something fabulous to WCC round-ups and I always look to see what she's created. For Pressure Cookers, Dutch Ovens & Crockpots, she has made succulent Smoked Pork Neck in Pineapple Sauce with Dried Cherries and Raisins. Will you look at that photo? OMG it looks DELISH! Thank you so much, Ulrike! :)

Next is Lisa (love your name!) from LadyConcierge. In my humble opinion, Lisa has brought the sexy back to Pot Roast. Seriously, doesn't that dish make you all warm and tingly inside? Way to go! And thanks so much for sharing, Lisa!

LiberalFoodieIrish lamb stew
Liberal Foodie a fellow Ohioan, had a busy day of NOT shopping at Ikea and finding some delicious items at the local Halal Market. One of those items was some lamb, which she chose to highlight in an Irish Lamb Stew for St. Patrick's Day. The recipe sounds delish and there's a whole bottle of beer in there, so you KNOW it's Irish. hee! Sounds like you had a fun evening - wish I could have been there! But hey.. since I wasn't, this was a pretty good second. Thank you so much! :D

Robin of Made With Love brings us another Irish dish - that really wasn't what the Irish of days passed actually ate! Did you know that? The true boiled meat with cabbage dinner was most likely bacon, or salt pork - because there was no refridgeration back then, they had to preserve their meats in salt. Makes sense! I'm sure it was absolutely delicious a 100 years ago, but Woo baby, there's nothing like Corned Beef and Cabbage and Robin's version made in her crockpot looks incredibly yummy! I had to block the view of my monitor from Hubbs as I was reading Robin's post.. if he would have seen it I would have been shopping for a corned beef brisket that afternoon! hee! Thanks for giving me a new way to make this incredible dish, Robin!

Awww.. he holds a place in me heart, he does.. Mike from Mel's Diner is up next. The king of 20 questions, the laugh of the party, the very nice man who turns quite curmudgeon-y when presented with a boat load of lamb, some spices and none too big onions for stuffin'. :D Sick he was! Yet he still slaved over his beloved pressure cooker with Nigella close by to bring us this delicious dinner of Beef With Anchovies And Thyme a la Pressure Cooker! heeee! Aww look at that beef.. so tender. And who can say no to noodles?? Not I! Thanks Mike.. hope you are feeling better. :)

Our second dessert! The extremely talented and not quite yet there almost stir-crazy mom of two gorgeous babies, Aidan and Cole, Holly of PheMOMenom brings us this KICK ASS lookin' Caramel Apple Rice Pudding - I have just one word to describe this dessert.. *slurp* Holly you are the bees knees! Thank you sweetheart! :D

Who's the sexiest hoochie mama blogger of all time? Kelly is! 'kay this woman keeps me in stitches and Kleenex in business with all the droolin' I do over at her blog. This recipe was definitely a 10 Kleenex recipe.. My gal, she made us some SERIOUSLY Savory Chicken and Dumplings! Would you look at the size of that dumpling?? Ohh and those veggies are makin' my engine roar.. or maybe that's just Kel's affect on me.. SAUCY! ;) Love ya babe.. thanks so muchly!

Next on this list of talented cooks is a new friend of mine and another fellow Ohioan, Mary of Shazam in the Kitchen! Now ya'll? Send lots of prayers and good wishes for our Mary as she just had a pretty extensive knee surgery a few days ago.. and she's got a long road of recovery ahead of her.. We wish you nothing but the best, sweets! And bless your heart (and your rolly computer chair) for getting in the kitchen and creating for us another boozy and delicious crockpot creation, Lamb Chops in Beer - SWEET! Tender meat and lots of veggies chillin' in a warm and bubbly beer bath.. Oh yeah.. sweet sweet yuminess! Thanks again, Mary! :)

Hey.. before we move along to the next talented cook, I'd like to also mention another friend of mine who has also just had surgery - a fellow Daring Baker and all around super sweet gal, Amanda of Little Foodies is recovering from back surgery.. can ya'll squeeze her in your prayers and good thoughts as well? We're wishing you a speedy recovery, love! xoxo

I'm quite proud of our next brand spankin' new blogger.. Lovelycats of Sherry Trifle started out submitting her posts to me on the Daring Bakers Non-blogging Members Blog and has since struck out on her own with her brand new blog. Congrats! The WCC was honored to be one of her first posts and she bring us this delicious Red Curry Chicken Braised in Coconut Milk. Having just reviewed a cookbook with recipes chuck full of curry and coconut milk, I can confidently say that this dish IS delicious. And cooked in a crockpot.. how fab is that? Thank you very muchly, Lovelycats! :D

Chelle of Sugar & Spice joins in on the fun and brings to the table a lovely Pot Roast that I'd be proud to serve my family. During the magnificent Blizzard of 2008, Chelle whipped out her crockpot and a book of crockpot recipes put out by Cooking Light Magazine (I must get this book!).. I can attest to recipes in other Cooking Light Annual Cookbooks, everything I've had has been flavorful and shockingly good (low fat? low calorie? good for you and tastes good? Well I'll be dipped!), so this recipe will not disappoint! Thanks for sharing this with us, Chelle! :)

Deborahcornish hen
Another favorite blogger of mine, Deborah of Taste and Tell decided to finally try her hand at cooking Cornish Hens.. Roasted Lemon Almond Cornish Hens.. and in the crockpot no less! Hurray! I love Cornish Hens and have only roasted them before.. am just tickled with the thought of throwing a couple in the slow cooker one Sunday! And this might have to be the recipe I use.. lemony poultry.. *happy sigh* Much abliged, Deborah - as per usual you always have me craving! :)

I dare you to find me a sweeter gal than our Gabi of The Feast Within! Always with such nice words to say and with such talent in her kitchen! I saw this Latin concoction and instantly started to swoon. Her Mom's Chalupa recipe is just begging to be made with a nice big dollop of both sour cream and guacamole! Ole! hahahaha gawd I crack myself up with the corny shit I come up with.. Ole! *ahem* Thank you, sweet Gabi.. this is going to be made for our annual summer party! :)

Another fabulous Mary on our list.. and guest at Chez La Mia Cucina last summer, Mary the Breadchick from The Sour Dough! Yay! 'kay well Mary wins the Grand Poobah Award for most entries in one post for the use of her crockpot! You go girlfriend! Along with the gorgeous Swedish Stuffed Cabbage pictured above, Mary also made Pot Roast, Hamburger Soup, Corned Beef & Cabbage, and, a Mini Meatloaf! hahahahaaa! Fabulous! Bread Maven and Crockpot Queen! Hugs and smoochies! Thanks sweetie :)

JillOrange Scented Beet Salad 004
Jill of Veggie Queen Adventures, wowed me with this gorgeous salad.. her Orange Scented Beet Salad to be more specific. Sweet beets, cooked quickly in the pressure cooker and then tossed with spicy greens and an orange scented vinaigrette.. I don't think a more simply made salad could be any better. What a fabulous recipe.. thank you so much, Jill!

Lisa's Spanish Rice Italian Chicken and Potatoes
And finally.. the old windbag herself.. Me. :) Well I made my Mom's Spanish Rice and frankly? I outdid myself.. it was sheer tomato-y goodness. The rice was cooked to perfection, the ground beef and veggies were flavorful.. the rice soaked up just the right amount of the sauce.. oh yeah.. we enjoyed this two nights in a row. And then I also made these amazingly simply and unbelievably good, Italian Wings & Potatoes for another foodie event, but would feel awful to not include them here because this is a place someone might come lookin' for a slowcooker recipe and it'd be a crying shame if they missed out on these. Not kiddin.. SO GOOD!

Thank you so much to all of you.. this was a lot of fun and I can't wait to experiment with all these delicious concoctions! Ya'll rock. :D Thank you again, Sara my love.. now bring me some taters? ;)


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Comments on "WCC No. 26 Round-Up - Pressure Cookers, Dutch Ovens and Crockpots - Oh My!"


Blogger Amanda at Little Foodies said ... (3/29/2008 6:23 AM) : 

Probably my favourite type of food, for cooking and eating. What a superb round up - I could eat the lot!

You gorgeous girl! Thank you for the mention and your well wishes and prayers.

Amanda x


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (3/29/2008 10:29 AM) : 

Well all these lovely dishes just may force my crockpot to stay on the counter through spring!

Great job hosting and perfect round up for a fantabulous event my sweets!

hugs and smooches,
Breadchick Mary


Blogger Brilynn said ... (3/29/2008 11:36 AM) : 

So sorry I didn't participate in this one, but up until last week I didn't have a pressure cooker, dutch oven or crockpot... I have since corrected that with my very first Le Creuset. She's beautiful. I will take advantage of all of these wonderful recipes and pick one out to christen my new baby.


Blogger creampuff said ... (3/29/2008 12:13 PM) : 

Wow, Lis! I am absolutely drooling over here! I can't believe all the creative entries. I wish I had a huge plate so I could try one of each ... yummy! Thanks for hosting and thanks for the great idea!


Blogger Mary said ... (3/29/2008 3:19 PM) : 

What a great roundup Lis! Thanks for the well wishes and prayers! You're so sweet!


Blogger Judy said ... (3/29/2008 4:33 PM) : 

So many delicious recipes to try -- I can't decide which one to cook first! Thanks for hosting -- and for your wonderful comments all around. (I promise I'll give the 'gross' history in the near future.)


Blogger Peter M said ... (3/29/2008 4:50 PM) : 

This turned out to be a great event and I'm glad I got in on it. Let's continue this when the cold weather comes around again.


Blogger MyKitchenInHalfCups said ... (3/29/2008 6:18 PM) : 

Lisa you just rock it always. These dishes are super looking lovely and delish. . . drooling!!
I do need me a crock pot!
It would pay to try some of these this summer to keep the heat out of the kitchen!


Blogger Deborah said ... (3/29/2008 9:11 PM) : 

Thanks for hosting - this one was so much fun! Can't wait to try out some of these recipes.


Blogger Chris said ... (3/30/2008 1:15 AM) : 

Holy Moly! Now, thats a round up! Sorry I didn't get an entry in.


Blogger kellypea said ... (3/30/2008 3:30 AM) : 

If this isn't the greatest line-up of comfort food, I don't know what is. I got so caught up checking out the links I forgot to say thanks for being the hostess with the mostest on this event! Heck, maybe next time, I'll figure out it's a COOKBOOK event, yah think? Hugs. And then some more hugs Lis. Air kisses too.


Blogger Sara said ... (3/30/2008 11:04 AM) : 

Wow! Fantastic turnout and a great round up Lis. Thanks so much for hosting, and yes, you WILL host again!


Blogger SaraLynn said ... (3/30/2008 11:18 AM) : 

Wow what a turn out! Everything looks fantastic! I can't wait to try some of these babies out!


Blogger Annemarie said ... (3/30/2008 1:26 PM) : 

Fabulous write-up, Lis (and thanks for the kind words). Expected nothing less from you than a tome on each dish, and you haven't disappointed. I'm sure you're getting some well needed rest after all that posting, but I'm also eager to see how your DB challenge came out, so C'MON and let us know! :)


Blogger Gabi said ... (3/30/2008 2:37 PM) : 

Wow now that's a ROUNDUP- Whoohoo! Thanks for the kind words, you are fabu.
Can't wait to see your DB cake.
Thanks for being the hostess with the mostest!


Blogger Helene said ... (3/30/2008 2:57 PM) : 

I just got a ton of great dinner ideas! Great round-up!


Blogger liberal foodie said ... (3/31/2008 9:26 AM) : 

all of these dishes look fab. Thanks for the roundup!


Blogger Jenny said ... (3/31/2008 1:42 PM) : 

OMG! I am so sorry! I can't read this month - I was so sure I had until today to get that to you, and was procrastinating over a mountain of laundry before I threw together my post! Blah!


Blogger KC said ... (3/31/2008 4:43 PM) : 

Fabulous roundup Lisa! You are a great hostess!

What a lot of great recipes to try. Thanks for hosting WCC.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (3/31/2008 9:15 PM) : 

WOW!!! What a turn out! Your roundup was incredible! About as far as you can get from my WCC....




Blogger Gretchen Noelle said ... (4/02/2008 7:07 PM) : 

These all look like great ideas! Love the round up, know I know where to look for crock pot ideas! Thanks!


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