Vernor’s Roast Beef

For those who are not familiar with Vernor’s, it is not your average ginger ale.  It has a zing to it.  That zing is what makes this roast work.  You’ve probably seen the cola roasts or the Dr Pepper roasts barbecues, etc.  This is similar but different.  The flour and gravy mix give it nice sauce.  The entire point of this recipes is that you can cook with Vernor’s.  I’m not sure what other ginger ales would taste like.  If you have a very gingery soda then feel free to substitute but most mass-market ginger ales don’t have a strong flavor and you might as well use lemon-lime or seltzer water for all that they bring to the recipe.

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Vernor’s Roast Beef

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Ingredients
  • 3 lb beef roast
  • 1/2 c flour
  • 1 envelope dry onion soup mix
  • 1 envelope brown gravy mix (the kind that makes one cup)
  • 2 c Vernor's ginger ale
Method
  1. Coat the roast with flour, reserving any that doesn’t stick.
  2. Place roast in slow cooker.
  3. Combine remaining flour, soup mix and gravy mix in a bowl.
  4. Add Vernor’s, mix well.
  5. Pour sauce over beef.
  6. Cover and cook on LOW 8-10 hours

Pulled Pork Potatoes

Here’s another way to use your pulled pork leftovers from your Slow Cooker Smoked Pork Butt. The cheese is good if you’re not adding coleslaw.  You could also add onions.

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Pulled Pork Potatoes

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Ingredients
  • 4 large baking potatoes
  • canola or other unflavored cooking oil
  • salt
  • 3-4 c pulled pork leftovers
  • barbecue sauce to moisten to taste
  • 8 slices white cheddar (optional)
Method
  1. Heat oven to 350. Put one rack in the middle of the oven and another below it.
  2. Scrub potatoes well under cold running water.  Dry.
  3. Poke all over with a fork (about 3-4 pokes with a standard eating fork)
  4. Place in a bowl and coat lightly with oil, then dust with a sprinkle of salt.
  5. Bake directly on middle rack, but put a baking sheet on the bottom rack in case they spit.
  6. Bake about an hour.
  7. Heat pork with barbecue sauce over medium-low to medium until hot.
  8. Cut each potato in half.
  9. Top with pork.
  10. Top with a slice of cheese if using and return to oven for 2-3 minutes to melt.
  11. May serve with coleslaw on top or on the side.

Crocked Brats

This is a good way to infuse bratwurst with flavor so they don’t require any condiments at serving time. They are very delicate coming out of the slow cooker and it’s very easy to break them.  This is a good use for classic brats–the beer flavored ones aren’t an advantage in this recipe. If you don’t need to watch your fat, there are other ways to prepare brats.

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Crocked Brats

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Ingredients
  • 8 bratwurst links
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 12-oz bottle or can beer (lager is good)
  • 1 c chili sauce
  • 1 c ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
Method
  1. Prick brats with fork. Place brats in water-filled skillet, bring to boil and boil ten minutes to release fat.
  2. Drain brats.
  3. Place brats in bottom of slow cooker.
  4. Combine remaining ingredients (except onion) in bowl and pour over brats.
  5. Place onion on top.
  6. Cover and cook on LOW for 5 hours.
  7. Remove carefully and serve on buns.

Easy 7-Up Biscuits

These are amazing.  I tried a version from a Facebook post but it called for less baking mix and that was not good.  You really need all four-and-a-half cups.  I tend to use whatever lemon-lime soda is on sale because I’m not a connoisseur.  I also had a different name for these, but when I went looking, Easy 7-Up Biscuits is what I found.  These turned out much better.  Do not scrimp or substitute.  Low-fat or no-fat sour cream does not work.  Neither does margarine.

Divine Chicken Soup

This is similar to Chicken Divine except without curry.  I’ve been known to add it, though.  I keep a tub of yellow curry paste in my fridge.

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Divine Chicken Soup

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Ingredients
  • 1 Tbsp EVOO
  • 2 large leeks (white and tender green) washed and chopped
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 2 cans chicken broth
  • 5 c (about 1.5 lbs) broccoli florets
  • 1 c heavy whipping cream
  • 1.5 c shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1.5 c cut up cooked chicken
Method
  1. In Dutch oven, heat EVOO. Add leeks, cook on medium until limp, 3-5 minutes.
  2. Stir in flour and cook 1 minute.
  3. Stir in broth and bring to boiling, stirring until thickened.
  4. Add broccoli, cook 5-7 minutes, until tender.
  5. Stir in cream and cheese. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 1-2 minutes until cheese is melted.
  6. Add chicken. Simmer 1 minute to heat through.

Italian-Style Roasted Potatoes

This is a tasty potato side and good to make when you already have the oven on.  The important part is to have the pieces about the same size.  The smaller the pieces, the faster they cook (to a point).  If you have the oven cooking something at a higher temperature, check them sooner, and if you’re cooking something at a lower temperature, allow extra time.

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Italian-Style Roasted Potatoes

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Ingredients
  • 3 lbs russet potatoes, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 c Italian or zesty Italian style salad dressing
Method
  1. Heat oven to 375
  2. Spray baking sheet with cooking spray.
  3. Add potatoes; drizzle with dressing and toss to coat.
  4. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until tender.

Sherry Apple Pork Chops

Apples and pork go together.  This is a good way to make pork chops that are a little snazzy without being too fussy.

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Sherry Apple Pork Chops

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Ingredients
  • 4 pork chops
  • 3 large cooking apples, peeled and sliced
  • 1/4 packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 c sherry
Method
  1. Brown chops on high in a large skillet, about 2 minutes/side
  2. Heat oven to 325
  3. Combine cinnamon and brown sugar in small bowl
  4. Arrange apple slices in 13×9 pan, sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon
  5. Place browned pork chops on apples and pour sherry over all.
  6. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour.

Tiphani’s Oven-Fried Chicken

This recipe is from my Facebook friend Tiphani.  You can make it with the skin off or on, but you have to treat it differently.

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Tiphani’s Oven-Fried Chicken

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Ingredients
  • 1 c crushed corn flakes
  • 4 tsp flour
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 8 chicken legs or 1 cut-up chicken
Method
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Put ingredients in a bag or in a dish.
  3. If you keep the skin on, moisten with water then bread; without skin, rub with mayo then bread.
  4. Bake on foil-lined baking sheet 45 minutes.