Quick-and-Easy Winter Comfort Foods

Looks like the cold weather is back for awhile and so I thought you would appreciate this article….

Quick-and-Easy Winter Comfort Foods

Coming home to a cold, dark house during winter isn’t exactly fun, but having a hot meal waiting for you will certainly help take the edge off. That’s the appeal of owning a slow cooker—a $40 kitchen tool that makes culinary geniuses out of people who can’t even fry an egg. Dump a bunch of meat and vegetables into the vessel before you leave for work, cover with your choice of liquid, press “on,” and disappear for 8 hours. When you return home later that evening, a pot filled with tender, flavorful, ready-to-eat meaty goodness will be waiting for you.

What’s more, you don’t even need to buy premium cuts of meat. Inexpensive cuts happen to possess an inordinate amount of flavor, and slow-cooking at a steady low temperature is the best way to break down all their connective tissue. Try one of these four bold braises  – all you’ll need to do is crock, lock, and load.

All of these recipes can be done without a slow cooker. Simply place in a 300-degree oven until the meat begins to fall apart.

Asian Short Ribs

Step 1: Always fully brown your meat in oil first. The deeper the caramelization, the more flavor the final dish will have.

For Asian Short Ribs, combine short ribs, onions, carrots, garlic, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, beef stock, ginger, and honey

Coq Au Vin

Step 2: After you’ve browned the meat and transferred it to the slow cooker, deglaze the hot cooking pan by adding wine or other liquid and using a wooden spoon to scrape up any crusty bits stuck to the bottom. This will allow you to extract every last bit of flavor left behind by the meat.

For Coq Au Vin (Red Wine Chicken), combine chicken legs, onion, carrots, garlic, red wine, chicken stock, tomato paste, and mushrooms.

Lamb Ossobuco

Step 4: Build flavor with vegetables, spices, herbs, and other add-ins. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4, but remember to add vegetables that cook quickly (such as mushrooms) during the last hour—unless you don’t mind eating mush.

For Lamb Ossobuco, combine lamb shanks, onions, carrots, celery, garlic, red wine, stock, tomato paste, and bay leaves.

From Men’s Health

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