Not Your Mother's: Peach Crumble

Really wish I could have gotten some pictures up for this recipe, because as my Citizen Journalism class knows, IT IS DELICIOUS. So delicious in fact, that it was devoured before I could think to take any pictures. Ass kissing? OBVIOUSLY! Teachers are like armies, they march on their stomachs...or something.

Another plug for Beth Hensperger and Julie Kaufmann's Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook, but this time for peach crumble! I really don't understand why their book is available on Google books. If the link doesn't work, try creating a Google account and it might. I paid $22 Canadian for this thing because I wanted to have a hard copy of tried and tested recipes, but lo and behold, it's available online! (At the time of writing I am able to freely scroll through hundreds of recipes.) In case it isn't at the time of reading, here is the recipe!


  • 2 pounds/ 1 kg firm-ripe peeled and thickly sliced peaches (Peruvian peaches were in season when I made this. Cheap cheap special price for you!)
  • 3/4 cups of quick-cooking rolled oats
  • 3/4 cups of all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cups of firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup of cold unsalted butter or homemade butter or as much cannabutter as you want

Yo crumble is a classic! Try all the fruits of the cornucopia! Also, works as a dessert and breakfast.


Once again proving how easy a slow cooker really is. I had to wake up earlier than normal for my 9:30 class (boy college sure is tough...) and prepared this delicious dessert in time to use as a special little breakfast snack for my classmates.

  • Coat your slow cooker container with butter or margarine or pam. Seriously. This is important in avoiding frustrating messes.
  • For the topping: mix the oats, flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt
  • Cube the butter and work it into the powder mix with your finger to create a crumbley topping.
  • Layer your peach slices on the bottom of the slow cooker. Soften them up by putting them in the crock pot on low for 30 minutes.
  • Spread the crumble topping evenly over the soft, juicy peaches. Cook on low for 2.5-3 hours or until you stick a knife through the topping and it comes out clean.

A great success. I wasn't sure how the topping would come out, if it would be as baked as oven variation crumbles, but it definitely was. Crispy and delicious, 5 stars all across the board and I am sure my peers would agree. Hopefully it will also boost my mark to keep my precious GPA up.

Homemade Butter, Not in a Slow Cooker!

Photo by Geoff and Sarah over at CheesePlusEverything

Just a quick post because I love plugging my only friends who have admitted to having an interest in keeping a blog (not the only friends, but the only ones who have sent me their link!) Check it out, quick and easy homemade butter! The recipe calls for whipping cream, a bit of salt and a food processor (though they used a blender and looks like it turned out well.) Definitely gonna give this a shot, especially for Slow Cooker Bread Part Deux. Or heck, even next time I make some slow cooker cannabutter.

The Slow Cooker as an Alternative Oven

Our apartment is (barely) heated by gas, but GazMetro is also our source for cooking on the stove top and in the oven. Slow cookers are popular for their electrical efficiency and they are an alternative to ovens which can overheat the house during the summer. Turns out you can use your slow cooker for baking not only delicious crumples and puddings, but breads and pastries as well! I attempted to bake some bread in my slow cooker in early January but it wasn't a great success. It was a whole wheat herb loaf (ya sounds tasty don't it?) but it didn't rise very well and came out pretty dense. Still great with slices of cheese! Get a bread maker you say? Are you kidding? With all the appliances we've already adopted we have no room for one more. compares the two appliances and is convinced that slow cookers are an alternative to bread machines. I am positive it can be tastefully accomplished, so I've compiled my research to perfect slow cooker breads before I give it another shot.


I get kind of annoyed when I see the templates because I don't always find their websites dependable and they favour middle aged housewives. Their slow cooker bread baking tips website though is actually a pretty good start and offers advice that I found on a couple other sites as well. Their recipes though don't offer much in the way of standard breads though and focuses on desserts. I know I know I love desserts too, but fresh bread is also pretty sweet.

Recipenet does offer a slow cooked bread recipe that worked for them, but I'm not entirely sure what wheat germ is or if I want to bring more germs into our apartment! The herb bread recipe I tried was from About Thyme, and I am only realizing now that it also calls for wheat germ which I did not include. Perhaps that explains why it didn't rise!

Many sites suggest raising the bread off the bottom of the slow cooker on aluminum foil balls to let heat bake the bottom, but not all of them do. Very few mention rising times as well, probably made up by the fact that breads are baked in a slow cooker for 3 hours instead of 1 hour in the oven.

I own Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook by Beth Hernsperger and Julie Kauffmann. I would love to see what they have to say but I recently lost my car keys and the book is stuck in my back seat. Thankfully, their book is available on Google books and is worth checking out!

Wheat germ free and doesn't call to raise the mold off the bottom. I would say go with this recipe since it comes from a reputable source!

Safely Slow Cooking Frozen Meat

When I first got my slow cooker, the little pamphlet that was included with it warned against under cooking meat and the threat of bacteria growth! I have had my slow cooker for over a year now, and I lost that pamphlet a long time ago. So when the question of slow cooking frozen meat came up I checked the web. The internet has done an amazing job of keeping the slow cooker from going extinct. It has reunited hundreds of thousands of slow cooks from around the world to share recipes and advice. Popular demographics in the slow cooking community are military wives, Iowa, religious, and the facebook group SLOW COOKER RECIPES is mostly women from the Maritimes, particularly Newfoundland. There is a lot of conflicting advice about whether it is safe to slow cook frozen meat, specifically if the required temperatures are reached to prevent food poisoning. What I read on the official Crock Pot brand web page has settled this debate once and for all, that it is safe to slow cook frozen meat:

"You can cook frozen meats in your Crock-Pot® slow cooker, however it is best to use the following guidelines:
  • Add at least 1 cup of warm liquid to the stoneware before placing meat in the stoneware.
  • Do not preheat the slow cooker.
  • Cook recipes containing frozen meats for an additional 4 to 6 hours on Low, or an additional
    2 hours on High."
Very reassuring coming from an official manufacturer. If you have doubts, read the required temperatures, and use a meat thermometre to verify that it is hot enough. I need to ask for one for my birthday, but this solves it for me. Great news because when you keep the heat to a minimum in the winter to save on your gas bill, it's tough to defrost your feet in the morning let alone a three pound roast.

And it was a real cold winter in our poorly insulated Montreal apartment. If our back stoop wasn't home to the occasional H addict or lusty teenagers we could have seriously expanded our frozen food section.

The Crock Pot web page was also useful in pointing out that the term Crock Pot is a trademarked name, like Kleenex. I think slow cooker is what many Canadians call it, and I'm kind of proud we've been referring to the none sponsored name.

Macaroni and Tomato with Sour Cream Cheese

I love cheesy pasta, and I wanted to give crock pot pasta another chance after the success with the Homeschooled Mac and Cheese. My frustration with pasta recipes I've seen so far is that they all cook the pasta in advance. To me this seems to kind of defeat the purpose of the slow cooker, so I wanted to try more recipes with raw pasta that cooked in a sauce. I used a home made tomato and ground beef sauce that my mom had frozen for me, added some sour cream and some cream cheese, presto! Not quite a casserole, but definitely cooked pasta.


  • 300 grams of uncooked macaroni
  • Slightly less than half a stick of cream cheese
  • 1 cup of sour cream
  • Tomato sauce (one tupperware full?)
  • Additional vegetables ( I threw in some mushrooms, onions and green pepper)
  • Shredded cheddar or Parmesan to serve.


Uncooked pasta in the slow cooker is really easy since you're just mixing the sauces and it cooks itself!

  • Place macaroni in crock pot
  • Cover with tomato sauce, sour cream and chunks of cream cheese and stir with extra vegetables.
  • Cook on high for 1 1/2 hours on high. Should be well coooked in 2 hours on high.

So I think the macaroni thought it was going to be a casserole, but I'm glad it isn't. Still quite lose, but with some stickiness to it. Sour cream is a nice touch, but make sure it's well mixed in. Could have used a bit more tomato sauce, but the pasta is definitely cooked through. I went for the two whole hours without lifting the lid and it was getting crispy along the sides. Tasty and cheese though, and shows that uncooked pasta works in the slow cooker.

I've got friends in the industry

Check it out, I updated some links the other day but thought I might draw some attention to them.

other patient chefs

A Year of CrockPotting - This women is a hero in the slow cooked community. She created and modified recipes for her gluten free family for a year, and I think she's gotten a book deal out of it.

A Crock Cook - A pretty simple sight that heralds "real crock pot recipes for real people."

Canadian Living - Has released special issues on slow cooking and lots of recipes for the Canadian kitchen.

Slow Cooker Recipes - A no frills approach to slow cooking (and there aren't a lot to start!) but a huge database of recipes.

What a Crock - Lots of meal plans in this one, something useful certainly!

Crock Pot Alchemist - Finally another dude interested in slow cooks. Appropriately, he works well with meat.

We Artists Need to Stick Together

Eggs Benedict from Lobster by CheesePlusEverything

To cook this slowly doesn't take skill as much as patience and the knowledge that you'll be hungry in a few hours. My friends Geoff and Sara over at CheesePlusEverything are the talented ones. They really do some pretty classy things with cheese for a couple of university students in Ottawa. I want to try their spinach and goat cheese risotto, sounds real good. Worth checking out since you know you love cheese and their photos are really appetizing.

3 B's Stew

My girlfriend has been vegetarian for a decade, so I am supposed to learn veggie friendly recipes. No problem, I love legumes, but she is still a better meat free cook than I am. Proof was in this amazing hearty stew she made. Look at all the nice vegetables she included, I am particularly fond of the 3 Bs, Brussels sprouts, beans and barley, hence the title. This recipe was used on a stove top, but I am convinced it would work fine in a slow cooker.


(made on the stove)
  • 2 tablespoons of melted butter
  • 1 leek, white part sliced thinly
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 1 Cup chopped Brussels sprouts
  • 1.5 L of vegetable broth (or cubes)
  • 1 peeled and diced turnip
  • 3 peeled chopped parsnips
  • 1 can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup of barley
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes, juice included
  • Thyme
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • Coriander
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Typically I also enjoy stews made with beer and meat.


Simple since most of the work is cutting.

Fry the leek and onions in the butter until wilted.
Combine EVERYTHING in the slow cooker, and give it a good stir.
Cook until turnips are tender. I will guess 3-4 hours on high, 4-6 hours on low.


This is a really hearty stew and I can't wait to try it on the slow cook. Great vegetarian alternative.

Spices PT. II: Slow Cooker specifics

I found these while digging around our cupboards. They are spice kits that with only a few extra ingredients (meat, vegetables), you can get a pretty tasty meal. My mom gave them to me as stocking stuffers and they have turned out really well in the past. Very flavourful. I think they are only available in the United States, comes in all these varieties and more!

A College Kitchen Guide: NICE (SPICE!!!) RACK

my mom's is bigger

One of the best Christmas gifts I ever received was a FULLY LOADED spice rack. I moved into my first apartment just before the New Year, our celebrations were very well seasoned! You can see in my photo that we've run low on a few, but trust me there are plenty of spares. It didn't include everything on this list, but it gave us a great start and reminded us to pick up some herb when we went out. Canoe and camping trips really made me realize how important it is to not forget the spices at base. Nor should the wars fought for them be underestimated! Maybe that's why grocery stores package them nicely and charge a nice tax. I hate paying for spices, partially because of their sordid history, so I often find myself pocketing them on the way to the cash! How's that for spicy?!

Essential Herbs and Spices

  • All spice
  • Basil
  • Bay leaves
  • Black pepper
  • Celery salt
  • Chili powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Ginger
  • Cumin
  • Nutmeg
  • Cinnamon
  • Cloves
  • Curry powder
  • Dry mustard
  • Onion salt
  • Oregano
  • Paprika
  • Parsley flakes
  • Cardamom pods (whole or ground)
  • Tarragon
  • Thyme
  • Turmeric
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Chives
  • Cilantro flakes
  • Rosemary
  • Dill
  • Sage
  • Savory

A College Kithcen Guide: Cupboard Classics

These are a few basics that I keep in our cupboards. Some of them may be unusual, but it is surprising how often some of them show up!

  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Bouillon cubes or undiluted stock for chicken, beef and vegetables
  • Brown sugar
  • Granulated sugar
  • Cooking oil (a lot of students just pick up olive oil, but it is important to have an affordable alternative. Olive oil is also important.)
  • "Cream of" soups (synonym for SAUCE. Chicken and mushroom especially.)
  • Dry soups (onion is really handy)
  • Dry yeast? (Look forward to bread baking in your crock pot!
  • Honey
  • Tuna
  • Canned vegetables (we like corn)
  • Macaroni or pasta
  • Rice
  • Kidney beans, dried or canned
  • Vanilla extract
  • Garlic
  • Wheat and white flour
  • Vinegar (plain, red wine, apple. Combine for a fresh smelling drain cleaner!)
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Soya sauce
This list if probably the most incomplete. Everyone uses different things more than others, the trick is in the gathering.