Fix two meals simultaneously in a slow-cooker

October 16, 2013 

Lime Pot Roast.

MCT

Cynthia Graubart of Dunwoody, Fa., winner along with co-author Nathalie Dupree of the 2013 James Beard Award for “Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking” (Gibbs Smith, $45), has a new cookbook.

After “Mastering,” which clocked in at 6 pounds, 722 pages, “Slow Cooking for Two: Basics, Techniques, Recipes” (Gibbs Smith, $19.99) is a return to simplicity and economy.

But with 100 recipes for the likes of Cornish Hen in Port Wine and Fig Preserves, Smoky Chipotle Butternut Squash Soup and Mushroom Risotto, there is no shortage of flavor and sophistication.

This recipe shows off Graubart’s clever concept of cooking two separate dinners at once. Slow-cooker liner bags are the trick.

To save one of the dinners for later, place in a resealable plastic freezer bag, label and freeze. If you plan to eat it within a day or two, you may store in the refrigerator in a closed container or resealable plastic bag.

DOUBLE DINNER: LIME POT ROAST AND VINEGAR-BRAISED POT ROAST

Hands on: 15 minutes; total time: 8 hours, 15 minutes; serves: 4 (each roast makes 2 generous portions).

FOR THE LIME POT ROAST:

1/2 of a 2-pound to 2 1/2-pound chuck roast

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Grated rind of 1 lime, no white attached

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice, or bottled lime juice

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup beef broth

1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning

1 small (14 1/2-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

Place chuck roast in the bottom of a slow-cooker liner bag. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Add lime zest, lime juice, garlic, beef broth, Italian seasoning and tomatoes to the bag on top of roast and set aside.

Nutrition per serving: 582 calories (percent of calories from fat, 55), 44 grams protein, 20 grams carbohydrates, 4 grams fiber, 36 grams fat (14 grams saturated), 132 milligrams cholesterol, 1,026 milligrams sodium.

FOR THE VINEGAR-BRAISED POT ROAST:

1/2 of a 2-pound to 2 1/2-pound chuck roast

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 small onion, sliced

1/2 cup strong coffee

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

2 sprigs rosemary, or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed

Place chuck roast in the bottom of a slow-cooker liner bag. Sprinkle liberally with salt and black pepper. Add onion, coffee, balsamic vinegar and rosemary on top of roast and set aside.

Place both liner bags, side by side, into the slow cooker. Drape each liner (closed) away from the other, extending over the sides of the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

When ready to serve: Place two large serving dishes next to the slow cooker. Remove cover and using pot holders or oven mitts, carefully transfer each bag to its own serving bowl. Open the liner, and allow contents to cool slightly. Remove meat from the liner using tongs, and transfer to the serving bowl. Pour juices over the dish. Repeat with the other dinner. Before serving, season to taste with salt and pepper.

Nutrition per serving: 496 calories (percent of calories from fat, 66), 36 grams protein, 6 grams carbohydrates, 2 grams fiber, 36 grams fat (14 grams saturated), 132 milligrams cholesterol, 116 milligrams sodium.

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