CIC: Pineapple & Sweet Potato

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I’m {finally} back with another Crazy Ingredient Challenge!

This month’s mission: to combine pineapple and sweet potato. Two of my husband’s favorite ingredients.

At first I was thinking of some sort of savory/sweet empanada, which does still sound insanely delicious. But as things have their own way of developing, pizza became the final answer.

I made slow cooker pineapple barbecue pulled chicken on one of our 100 degree days when preheating the oven seemed like the worst idea on the planet. We served that chicken over rice. The leftovers had gone to work with my husband for 3 days. Firecracker and I loved it re-purposed as nachos, too.

As I sat there with still an insane amount of chicken in my fridge, the light bulb went off. (Not the one in my fridge.) I had half of the CIC challenge done! Now to incorporate the sweet potato. Ding! Pizza!

I made a gluten free pizza dough out of a white sweet potato. (Hello sneaky veggies!) Topped it with barbecue sauce, cheese, the leftover chicken, and some extra pineapple for good measure. The pizza dough was incredible easy to make and held up to the heavy toppings I layered on top. Maybe I’ll make it again using an orange sweet potato for Halloween!

sweet potato crust

This recipe makes 2 servings.

Pineapple Barbecue Chicken Pizza with Sweet Potato Crust

Ingredients:

  • 1 sweet potato
  • 2/3 C rolled oats
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2-1 tbsp olive oil
  • barbecue sauce
  • 2 C shredded mozzarella cheese
  • leftover slow cooker Hawaiian barbecue chicken, finely chopped
  • fresh pineapple, diced

Steps:

  1. Peel potato. Cube. Place in a pot covered with salted water. Boil 10-15 minutes, until potato is fork tender. Drain and allow to cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Place cooled potato in a food processor along with the rolled oats and the egg. Process until smooth.
  4. Using wet hands, transfer the pizza dough to the prepared baking sheet. Form into a circle, 1/4-1/2″ thick. Bake 25-30 minutes. Allow crust to cool. Flip the crust, peel off the parchment, and brush with olive oil. Bake another 5-10 minutes.
  5. Top pizza crust with barbecue sauce, cheese, chicken, and pineapple. Bake another 5-10 minutes until the cheese is melted and the toppings are warmed through.

*The crust recipe is modified from Lindsay at http://pinchofyum.com/sweet-potato-pizza-crust*

Pineapple Barbecue Chicken Pizza with Sweet Potato Crust for Crazy Ingredient Challenge from Sew You Think You Can Cook

To see the other bloggers who participated in this month’s Crazy Ingredient Challenge click on the link below.

CIC: Pears & Red Pepper Flakes

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I’m {finally} back with another Crazy Ingredient Challenge!

This month’s mission: to combine pears and red pepper flakes.

As I informed my husband of the task at hand I was also creating my menu and grocery list. I thought about the proteins that were in the freezer and the lightbulb went off.

Barbecue pork!

Why not make a barbecue sauce with the pears and add in the red pepper flakes for kick?

Pear Barbecue Pulled Pork Sandwich | Sew You Think You Can Cook | http://sewyouthinkyoucancook.com

I made the barbecue sauce in the morning and then added it to the slow cooker along with my bone-in pork shoulder. I shredded the pork when it was ready, put it in a container, and headed out the door to Pure Barre. When I came home, all I had to do was assemble a sandwich on my favorite pretzel bun for an easy dinner.

Well, actually, I had to first put the boys to bed. But then I got to eat my sandwich! I had more for lunch the next day, too. Having the pork for lunch was really the best thing about it!

Pear Barbecue Pulled Pork

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 C tomato paste
  • 1 C apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 C dark brown sugar
  • 2 red Anjou pears, diced
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 2 1/2 – 3 lb bone-in pork shoulder, trimmed of extra fat
  • 6-8 pretzel buns

Steps:

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, season with salt, and saute until translucent. Add the fennel seeds and cook until the onion become golden. Stir in the cinnamon and tomato paste and cook 3 minutes. Add the vinegar, sugar, pears, and pepper flakes. Bring sauce to a simmer and cook over medium-low heat for 20 minutes, until pears are tender. Let cool slightly.
  2. Transfer sauce to a blender and puree until smooth. (If the sauce is still warm, be sure to cover the top of the blender with a kitchen towel.)
  3. Place a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of a slow cooker. Season pork with S+P and place in slow cooker. Cover with 1 C of the pear barbecue sauce. Cook on LOW 8 hours.
  4. Shred pork with two forks. Serve with extra barbecue sauce on a pretzel bun.

*The barbecue sauce is adapted from http://usapears.org/recipe/pear-barbecue-sauce-with-chile-and-spice/*

Pear Barbecue Pulled Pork Sandwich for Crazy Ingredient Challenge from Sew You Think You Can Cook

To see the other bloggers who participated in this month’s Crazy Ingredient Challenge click on the link below.

#FantasticalFoodFight: Slow Cooker Soups

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I’m happy with this first food fight theme of 2017 – slow cooker soups.

While participating in the Countdown to 2017 blogging event (also hosted by Sarah of Fantastical Sharing of Recipes) I discovered that I hadn’t blogged a single slow cooker recipe in 2016. Good news, I’ll have at least one slow cooker recipe to share at the end of this year.

My slow cooker will be earning its keep in my cupboard this year. I’m happy to finally report that we’ve worked out a way to add Pure Barre back into my schedule.

I gave Pure Barre a try in January of last year in Ohio and loved it! I became hooked and attended class as often as possible. While my husband was getting his masters it was easier as his schedule was more flexible.

When we moved to California I immediately searched for the nearest studio and found it less than a mile from our place. It’s conveniently located next to Whole Foods, an easy 20 minute walk (sans stroller) or 4 minute drive. I was excited! But then I saw their class schedule times and my heart sank. It simply wasn’t going to work with my husband’s schedule/traffic.

After coming back from our Christmas vacation we reassessed and figured we at least had to try. I’m nearing the end of my 1st month unlimited membership and I’ve been able to go 3-4 times a week! Those days that I’m only able to go around dinner time, the slow cooker is going to be my best friend. I’ll be able to feed the kids before heading to the studio and my husband will have warm food whenever he wants it and I can have a warm dinner when I return home, too.

I can’t wait to see what everyone else has brought to this food fight!

I’m sharing a Japanese Onion Soup with Mushrooms. It’s a simple soup that makes for a perfect appetizer or light lunch. I served the soup alongside homemade teriyaki.

Japanese Onion Soup with Mushrooms for #FantasticalFoodFight from Sew You Think You Can Cook (1)

As I was editing my photographs, I realized I forgot to garnish with scallions! Oops. I’m happy to say I still like the pictures! I decided to set aside enough soup to save for a photo shoot the next day at lunch to take advantage of natural lighting. Evidently, I forgot about slicing some fresh scallions.

Japanese Onion Soup with Mushrooms

Ingredients:

  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut in half
  • 2 stalks celery, cut in half
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 4 scallions, roughly chopped (plus more for garnish)
  • 6 C chicken stock
  • 1 container (8 oz) sliced mushrooms

Steps:

  1. Place carrots, celery, onion, garlic, and scallion in a slow cooker. Top with the chicken stock. Cook on LOW 4-5 hours.
  2. Remove veggies from the broth.  (I added the onions to my teriyaki!) Season to taste with S+P. Add the mushrooms and cook on LOW one more hour.
  3. Serve warm. Option to garnish with fresh scallions.

*This recipe is adapted from Amanda at http://theskinnyfork.com/blog/2013/3/8/crock-pot-japanese-onion-soup*

Japanese Onion Soup with Mushrooms for #FantasticalFoodFight from Sew You Think You Can Cook (2)

To check out the other Fantastical Slow Cooker Soups click here:  

If you would like to join our Fantastical Food Fight, you can learn more on our informational page.

#SundaySupper: Big Game Day Recipes

Are you ready for the big game next weekend? I am! As an Auburn graduate I am a huge Cam Newton fan. Seriously, love that man (and his smile)! Not only is he an incredible athlete but he is a man making a difference in his community and in the lives of children. Even though he did leave Auburn to go to the NFL after taking us to a National Championship victory, he returned to Auburn in the off season to finish his degree. War Eagle, Cam!

But I digress.

If your team didn’t make it (my main team allegiance is the Chicago Bears) that doesn’t mean you can’t gather with friends and watch history in the making. Besides, there are always commercials and the half-time show if you don’t care about the game itself. And if none of that appeals to you, just show up for some good food! The Sunday Supper crew has a wonderful variety of recipes to create the perfect game watching menu. Thank you to T.R. Crumbley of Gluten Free Crumbley for assembling the team!

Today I’m sharing a recipe for chicken wings. To me, wings are the ultimate football watching food! (Well, that and some sort of dip.) Chicken wings aren’t hard to make at home either. Especially when you can do them in the slow cooker! Whaat? Yes, it’s true! The trick is popping them under the broiler right before serving to get them crispy. These particular wings are cooked in a Thai-inspired peanut sauce. I then garnish them with cilantro, lime wedges, and chopped peanuts. Delicious.

(P.S. Happy Birthday, Mom!)

Slow Cooker Thai Wings

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 C creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 C soy sauce
  • 1/4 C brown sugar
  • 1-2 tbsp chili paste, to taste (I used Gourmet Garden stir-in paste)
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed (I used 1 tsp Gourmet Garden chunky garlic stir-in paste)
  • 2-4 lb chicken wings, tips removed and wings split
  • cilantro (I used Gourmet Garden lightly dried herbs), for garnish (optional)
  • limes, for garnish (optional)
  • chopped peanuts, for garnish (optional)

Steps:

  1. Lightly grease the bowl of your slow cooker.
  2. In a small bowl, combine peanut butter, soy sauce, brown sugar, chili paste, and garlic. Adjust chili paste to taste. Pour into slow cooker.
  3. Add the wings and toss to coat all the wings in the sauce. Cook on LOW 2-4 hours.
  4. Place cooked wings on a foil lined rimmed baking sheet. Broil on HIGH for 3-5 minutes, until crispy.
  5. Garnish with cilantro, lime, and peanuts if desired.

*This recipe is adapted from Rachel at http://followinginmyshoes.com/my-recipes/sweet-n-spicy-slow-cooker-wings*

Slow Cooker Thai Wings for #SundaySupper from Sew You Think You Can Cook

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8387592742_f6164fd5a8_oJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the#SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Countdown to 2016: Crockpot

countdownto2016We’re continuing the countdown to 2016 with a round-up of my favorite slow cooker recipes from 2015.

Turns out that was a much easier search than last year. I only shared 5 slow cooker dishes over the course of the year! I’m pretty sure I’ve used my CrockPot more than five times! Usually I run into a problem of the food not looking photogenic and decide to give up on posting. More often than not though I’m simply making a repeat recipe or just tossing some pork or chicken in with a bottle of barbecue sauce or salsa.

This blogging countdown party is hosted by Sarah at Fantastical Sharing of Recipes. Scoot on over to her page to see more round-up recipes. I know I’ll be looking forward to seeing the recipes other bloggers have collected as the Best Crockpot recipes of 2015.

Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

Slow Cooker Jalapeno Lime Chicken

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with Apple Cider Vinegar BBQ Sauce

2015 Slow Cooker Round-Up

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with Apple Cider Vinegar BBQ Sauce

As summer vacations are winding to a close there’s some denial in the “back to the grind” busy schedules. That doesn’t mean you need to give up on perfect summer fare just yet!

Pulled meat (typically pork) sandwiches slathered with barbecue sauce are one of those meals that have you thinking of picnic tables and summer get togethers.

I have adjusted an Anne Burrell recipe from the January/February 2014 edition of Food Network Magazine (Anne Burrell’s Pulled Pork Sliders) to utilize the slow cooker, meaning you don’t need to turn on the oven or be stranded at home while it roasts away. You could even make the BBQ sauce in advance if you didn’t wan, or have the time, to be at the stove 30 minutes before dinner. I used chicken instead of pork because that’s what I already had in my freezer, if you want pork she used a 3 lb Boston butt pork roast.

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 1/2 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 1 bottle (12 oz) beer (I used a summer ale)

Steps:

  1. Season chicken with S+P. Place in the bottom of a slow cooker.
  2. In a small bowl combine paprika, garlic powder, brown sugar, mustard powder, and cayenne. Sprinkle over the chicken.
  3. Pour beer into the slow cooker. Cook on LOW 5-7 hours until the chicken shreds easily.
  4. Serve as a sandwich, wrap or salad with thinly sliced apple, red onion, lettuce, and apple cider vinegar bbq sauce (recipe below).

Apple Cider Vinegar BBQ Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 C apple cider vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed (I used 1 tsp Gourmet Garden garlic paste)
  • 1 Fresno chili pepper, deseeded and halved (I used 1 tbsp Gourmet Garden lightly dried chili pepper)
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard

Steps:

  1. Place all ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat then reduce to a simmer. Cook 20 – 30 minutes, or until a desired consistency is achieved. Remove the garlic and chili pepper, if used.

Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken with Apple Cider Vinegar BBQ Sauce | Sew You Think You Can Cook

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#HotSummerEats: Cherry Chipotle Baked Beans

HotSummerEatsWe’ve just crossed the halfway point of #HotSummerEats hosted by Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla. My menu continues with my husband’s favorite recipe of not only the week but of any that I’ve created to date.

I was happy to see that Not Ketchup was sponsoring this event. 64b31-not2bketchupThey generously provided bottles of their dipping sauce during last year’s #10DaysofTailgate during which I made Maize and Blue Chicken Salad. This time I requested a bottle of their Cherry Chipotle dipping sauce with the plan to make baked beans.

I had so much fun creating my Whiskey Bacon Baked Beans that I knew I wanted to try making more flavors. During that first batch of beans I realized just how much 1 lb of beans really is so I decreased the amount but feel free to double my recipe if you’re feeding a crowd. I actually made these beans twice – each time bringing them to a small potluck, and each time getting compliments. I kept this recipe vegetarian for some of my guests but feel free to substitute chicken stock or even add bacon!

An Original Recipe

Cherry Chipotle Baked Beans

Ingredients:

  • 1 C dry great northern beans (soaked and drained according to package directions)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 Vidalia onion, diced
  • 1/4 C Cherry Chipotle Not Ketchup
  • 2 tbsp molasses
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • pinch cayenne (optional and to taste)
  • 1 1/2 C vegetable broth

Steps:

  1. Place all ingredients in slow cooker. Stir. Cook on LOW 6 – 7 hours until beans are tender and sauce thickened.

Cherry Chipotle Baked Beans for #HotSummerEats from Sew You Think You Can Cook

Don’t forget to enter our giveaway and be sure to check out the other bloggers who posted more summertime recipes today:

 Thank you to #HotSummerEats sponsors BenBella Vegan, Caribeque, Casabella, Gourmet Garden, Intensity Academy, Not Ketchup, Out of the Weeds, Pirate Jonny’s, Quirk Books, Spicely Organics, T.Lish , and Voodoo Chef for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for#HotSummerEats without additional compensation. All opinions are my own.