You Don’t Have to Heat Up The Kitchen – Let Your Crockpot Do The Work

The wonderful thing about slow cookers and crockpots is that they are year-round versatile.  They aren’t just for soups in the cold weather, they are a great way to cook in hot weather when you don’t want to heat up the kitchen! Have a sweet tooth on a hot day but you want something more than ice cream?  Make a pandowdy in your slow cooker then top it with ice cream.  Yummy!  Baked Beans in the summer are delicious with cooked-out meats.  Make them in your cooker instead of the oven. And coming home to pulled pork for sandwiches is ideal!

STRAWBERRY-RHUBARB PANDOWDY

1 1/2 lbs rhubarb, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 pint strawberries, quartered

1 cup sugar

1 tbsp lemon juice

2 tsp grated lemon zest

Lightly grease a crockpot or slow cooker.

In a large mixing bowl combine the rhubarb, strawberries, sugar, lemon juice and zest.  Pour the mixture into the prepared cooker.

Topping:

3/4 cup baking mix (such as Bisquick)

1/2 cup butter

1/4 cup brown sugar

Combine all the topping ingredients in a bowl until they form a crumbly dough.  Evenly sprinkle the dough over the fruit mixture.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low setting 6 to 8 hours or on high setting 3 to 4 hours.

Serve pandowdy warm topped with ice cream (if desired).

CLASSIC CROCKPOT BAKED BEANS

3 cans (16-oz each) baked beans, 2 cans drained

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

1/4 cup molasses

1/2 cup ketchup

1/4 tsp dry mustard

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

6 bacon slices, fried crisp and crumbled

Combine all the ingredients together in a crockpot or slow cooker.  Place lid on cooker and cook on low for approximately 8-9 hours or on high for about 4 hours.

Yield: 6 servings

PERFECTLY SPICED PULLED PORK

5 lbs boneless pork butt shoulder

1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika

2 teaspoons black pepper

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup water

buns or…

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