I swear, sometimes it’s so hard to make stew type things look good in pictures. Especially for me, I don’t set anything up special, the dishes are not in makeup for an hour before we shoot, I try to be very realistic, and stove-to-plate…..because that’s real life! Anyway, Here’s something a little different. I really love the Grass-Fed Boneless Short Ribs from US Wellness Meats. They are a perfect portion, and you get a good amount of meat with them since you don’t have to worry about getting one with a big bone. I had some left over wine (Not WLC Compliant alert!) , and I was on a cherry kick, so I decided to make a sort of “Cherry BBQ “sauce for the short ribs. As always, it doesn’t get easier than the slow cooker, producing beautiful, tasty, fall apart-melt-in-your-mouth meat. Super duper easy, and you can substitute the ribs for any good roast.
- 16 oz boneless short ribs (I get mine from US Wellness Meats)
- 24 oz strained tomatoes
- 1 onion, quartered
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
- 1/8 cup coconut aminos
- 1/4 cup red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon)
- 1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
- A few tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1-2 cups dark red cherries (I used organic, frozen)
- a few dashes of nutmeg, Clove, Cinnamon, salt,
- A good amount of black pepper, paprika, ancho chili powder, and southwest seasoning
Throw everything in the crock pot, and cook on low for 8-10 hours. I put it in before going to work, and switched it to the keep warm setting when I got home.
Then while I was at the gym, I had a butternut squash roasting (350-375 for about 60-90 min depending on the size of the squash). Before getting into the shower, I cut it in half and removed the seeds. I lightly scored it, and then rubbed it with 1/2 a teaspoon of honey and a sprinkle of cinnamon and thyme per side, before putting it back in the oven for another 15 minutes. (Note: Don’t use honey if you are on the WLC as it is not compliant )
All of this fit into my busy day very nicely, and made getting a delicious dinner on the table a snap. I love rich, fruity, BBQ flavors in the winter time. The ribs were so tender, and pulled apart very easily with a fork.
This stuff is so good, and I’m thrilled that I made so much of it! What I really love about how this came out, is that it has enough flavor to stand on its own, but is subtle enough that you can re-use it for things like tacos, or to stuff inside of an avocado, squash, or potato. Like most crock pot stuff, and with only a few vegetables to chop, it’s beyond easy, and takes all of 10-15 minutes to prepare. I tried something new, and rather than doing this early in the day, and letting it cook on low for 6+ hours, I started it at night, and cooked it on high for only 5.
- 2.5 lbs Boneless and Skinless Chicken Thighs
- 1 lb Chicken Breast
- 2 Small Apples, chopped
- 3 jalapeno Peppers, sliced and seeded
- 1/4 Onion, chopped
- 5 Cloves Garlic, chopped
- 10 Allspice Berries
- 4 or 5 Tablespoons Kalustyan’s Ancho Chili Powder
- A little salt, cinnamon, nutmeg
- A dash coconut aminos ( up to 1 or 2 Tablespoons)
- 1/4 cup Tessemae’s paleo BBQ sauce
When adding ingredients to the Crock Pot, I started with the onion and garlic, then I did a layer of chicken thighs, breast, and the rest of the thighs. I finished off with the apples, jalapeno, and seasonings. After adding the BBQ sauce, I mixed it around, just slightly. Once all the ingredients were in, I cooked on high 5 hours. Then, I shredded the chicken with a fork.
Oh my! I feel like I’ve just been on a steamy kitchen date. This dish is mega dark, rich, and fruity. The Figs and Cherries are poached in red wine and mulling spices to reconstitute, and all the flavors compliment and play off each other in a sultry evening dance. The beefy flavor of the chuck roast intensify the bold flavors, but the sweetness of the fruit balance and subdue the beef flavor. My boyfriend, who normally doesn’t like “beefy” flavors, gave it a thumbs up. A subtle smokey spice from ancho chili powder adds a mild kick to envelope your taste buds a little further.
- 1 Carrot, chopped
- 3-4 Shallots, peeled and sliced
- 1 Turnip
- 1-2 lb Chuck Roast
- 2-3 tablespoons Ancho Chili Powder (I use Kalustyan’s)
- 1-2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil (For Browning)
- 1 cup Unsweetened Dried Cherries
- 7 dried Unsweetened Turkish Figs
- 2-3 cups Red Wine (Cabernet Sauvignon ) + and extra 1/4 cup
- Mulling Spices
- salt, pepper, thyme
- 1/2 split Vanilla Bean
- 1/2 cup Light Coconut Milk
- First, Peel and chop your vegetables and add to the slow cooker the carrot, shallots, parsnip, and turnip
- Then, rub the ancho powder all over both sides of your meat, and brown in coconut oil for a few minutes
- Then, Add to the crock pot as well
- add 2-3 Cups red wine, leaving about a 1/4 cup reserved to the side, the cherries, the figs, and mulling spices (in a spice bag), to a sauce pan. Simmer until the fruit has soaked in most of the wine and the figs look plump and moist.
- Pour over meat into the crock pot.
- Add the remaining wine, spices (salt, pepper, thyme, and a little more ancho powder), 1.2 a split vanilla bean, and 1/2 a can of light coconut milk to the crock pot.
- Cook on low 8 hours.
This came out really tasty. It was a happy accident actually. When I first started making it, I expected it to come out thicker, because of the coconut milk. I think between the water content of the Trader Joe’s Light Coconut Milk, and the liquids that come out of the chicken, it caused it to thin out. I liked it that way though, instead of it being a rich, thick, creamy stew – It came out more light and refreshing like a soup, and sometimes a spiced spin on good ol’ chicken soup is just what the doctor ordered. I found the flavor interesting enough yet still refreshing, but if you are expecting some intense curry flavors, you may want to up the spice. In terms of influence, I would say it’s more on the Thai side of things.
- 3 large chicken breasts
- 2 cans Trader Joe’s Light coconut milk
- 1/8 cup chicken stock
- 1 onion
- 1 sweet potato
- 1 zucchini
- 1 bell pepper
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 1 cup pineapple
- 1 medjool date
- 3-4 tablespoons curry powder
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 1-2 tablespoons turmeric
- a few good shakes of
The process couldn’t be any easier, which is the great thing about crock pots. I threw it together in the morning before heading out to work.
- Peel and cube the sweet potato, and chop the vegetables into large chunks. Throw them in the crock pot.
- Add the chicken, which should be cut into cubes. I use kitchen scissors, and just cut the breasts up right over the crock pot.
- Add the spices, liquids, and any remaining ingredients.
- Cook on low for 8-10 hours
- Towards the end you can take the lid off or leave it open a crack to thicken it a slight bit if needed.