Saturday, January 16, 2010

Slow Cooker Pork Stew

So I went back to work a few weeks ago, and the little man went to daycare, and everyone was sleeping well and getting into a routine. Life was good. And then ... the little man got his first cold.
It's weird how something as simple as a cold can wreak such havoc. The little man was born with some upper respiratory issues that he'll hopefully grow out of, but for now, he sounds miserable. He can't breathe well anough to eat, he can't breathe well enough to sleep, his eyes are watery, and he's got a heavy cough. And yet, he's such a trouper. He takes his nose drops every few hours, smiles at the doctor, and giggles at the funny noises that his nose makes. He's still been our happy little camper, for the most part.

He has required a lot of attention, though. He's extra cuddly right now. And he needs to be sitting up to breathe and swallow. So the hubby and I have spent dozens of sleepless hours in the recliner, where the little man tosses and turns and coughs and snorts. And kicks. He really likes to kick.

So we were quite lazy this week. We ate a lot of leftovers. We picked up takeout. Some nights we even forgot to eat.

Hopefully the little man will start feeling better soon. His jumparoo misses him. In the meantime, we're going to rely on the slow cooker this weekend, in the hopes that we can all take some quality naps.

Today I made a pork stew, which is almost identical to my beef stew recipe, but with pork and chicken broth. I used some beautifully lean country-style ribs (one of my favorite cuts of meat) for this recipe. I just used regular old potatoes and carrots, but I think using some sweet potatoes would be lovely, as would using some parsnips for some of the carrots.

Slow Cooker Pork Stew
Serves 4-6

4 medium carrots, cut in chunks
2 lb. potatoes, cut in chunks
2 tsp. canola oil
1½ lbs. boneless lean pork, cut in chunks
Flour, for dusting pork
Salt, pepper, onion salt, and garlic salt, for sprinkling on pork
32 oz. chicken broth
1 bay leaf
2 tsp. onion powder
1½ tsp. seasoned salt
¼ c. cornstarch
½ c. water
Additional salt, pepper, onion salt, and garlic salt, to taste

1. Put potatoes and carrots in slow cooker.

2. Heat 1 tsp. oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. Dredge half the pork with flour and add to pan, seasoning with salt, pepper, onion salt, and garlic salt. Cook until pork starts to brown a bit.

3. Add pork to slow cooker. Repeat with remaining oil and pork.

4. Add some of the broth to the pan -- just enough to loosen up the bits on the bottom -- and pour into slow cooker. Add remaining broth, bay leaf, onion powder, and seasoned salt.

5. Cook on low 6-8 hours, or until pork is cooked and vegetables are tender.

6. Combine cornstarch and water, and stir into stew. If stew thickens immediately, season to taste and serve anytime. Otherwise, turn heat to high and cook stew an additional 30 minutes.

7. Serve in bowls. Unless you're like the hubby. Then you'll need these additional instructions -- and I conveniently found the pictures already on the camera for me.

7a. Take two pieces of bread.

7b. Put bread in toaster. Push down button.

7c. Remove toast from toaster.

7d. Serve stew on toast. Drink with Coke.


Chow and Chatter said...

looks good oh I hope your lil one is feeling better soon its awful when they are sick Love Rebecca

Donna-FFW said...

Your stew sounds perfect for a chilly day like today!!

Hope your little guy is on the mend soon, its so rough when they dont feel well.

A Year on the Grill said...

The stew looks great... I may try your toast technique ;)

Sophie said...

Your stew looks grand & tasty!

I hope you are feeling better,...

CC said...

I so hope your little sweetie is feeling better. My sons are grown now, but I still well remember those sleepless nights when babies were sick. Even when they would nap, I would be almost afraid to I know how tired you must be. Thank you for this recipe,it sounds wonderful. I like the country style ribs as well, so I will give this one a try.

A Gracious Home said...

You did a great job on this recipe and meal. I can't wait to try it. Doylene

heartnsoulcooking said...

I a GREAT!!! meal and I like the idea of the toast. Sounds and looks WONDERFUL!!!
I have become a follower of your blog, I love to share recipes and ideas. Come by and visit maybe you can do the same, also you can enter my GREAT!!! waffle maker giveaway.

Debbie said...

You are so funny! I just love your sense of humor. I know you need it right now since Little Man is sick (that's what we call our grandson BTW). Thanks so much for posting this to CPW. I'm home today because of an ice storm---no fun. But I'm making oxtail stew (stoop?) so that's good. The smell is heavenly. I also made a lemon pound cake. It's a good thing that I live in the South where it doesn't snow/ice much. I'd weigh two tons. Hope all are well soon.

Janice said...

Wonderful.... Wondeful.... Recipe !!!

I made this yesterday and the aroma in the house was wonderful.!!!

My family loved it!!! This is truly a keeper and good enough to serve to company.

Thanks so much for sharing.


Sherri said...

Looks delish, just what I was looking for! Gonna try it on Wednesday!
Love the èxtra`instructions as well....your hubby is funny LOL

Anonymous said...

This is PERFECT! Thank you for this simple recipe, exactly what I was looking for. Making it right now.