The second recipe I tried this week in the crock pot was adapted from a recipe I found in the Weightwatcher magazine for March 2014. This was a huge success, resulting in a hearty casserole that was just bursting with flavour. It was polished off so quickly that I didn't even get a chance to snap a photograph!
I learned my lesson from Tuesday morning, and did all my preparation on Wednesday evening, putting everything in the crock-pot dish and leaving it in the fridge overnight. On Thursday morning I just had to place the dish into the pot and switch it on!
Into the bottom of the pot went about half a large butternut squash, peeled and chopped into large pieces. I added to this 2 onions chopped, 1 star anise, 1 tsp Chinese five spice, 100ml orange juice, a piece of fresh ginger (finely sliced using a potato peeler), 5tbsp soy sauce, and about 600g lean stewing beef in chunks. I didn't add any further water or liquid. This was all mixed together.
I figured this would take about 8 hours to cook, so I asked the au pair to turn on the pot at about 10am. When I got home, about 6:30, I turned it to "keep warm" and prepared a large pot of mashed potato.
This smelled wonderful as soon as I entered the house. The star anise and 5 spice gave it a really lovely flavour. The meat was perfectly cooked, very tender, without falling apart. The squash was well cooked, but still identifiable. It went very well with the mashed potato, which soaked up all the delicious sauce.
There were no leftovers. Hubby went back for seconds. The teenager picked out the onion and ginger, but otherwise said it was very tasty. Miss Fussy Eater said it was a bit spicy, but she still finished everything on her plate. This will definitely be a favourite in our house. Low fat and inexpensive, while still yummy!