Lent 2013 Challenge Day 4-5: Weekend Food Preparation
February 19, 2013 21 Comments
I was all set to par-bake a few pizza crusts along with making a batch of vegetable stock, but then time got away from me. I thought about cheating and making the crusts today (Monday), since our overall food prep time this weekend was well below the allotted two hours. On second thought, though, I decided to play fair; no matter our family income, our weekends waste away too quickly.
Anyway, our food prep this weekend was limited to emptying out the stock bag. “What stock bag?” You mean you don’t have a stock bag? Come here so I can slap you for not having a stock bag! Okay, now that that’s done, a stock bag is the big old plastic bread bag that you keep in your freezer, into which you drop your broccoli stems, your floppy carrots, your sagging celery, bits of bell pepper that didn’t slice nicely, the tops of your fennel bulbs, and your leek tops, thusly:
Once your bag is full of vegetable matter, dump it into your slow cooker, add some salt and pepper, throw in some garlic, a quartered onion, any herbs you like, and pour in enough water to cover the veggies. Set it on low and do my favorite thing to with a slow cooker: walk away for at least six hours, no more than twelve. When you come back, the vegetables will have had their essence drained out of them. You know, sort of like what the Skeksis did to the Podlings and the Gelflings in The Dark Crystal–
Strain out your veggies and let the remaining stock cool. Store in your fridge for a few days or freeze in freezer containers until you need them. Vegetable stock can be used in place of meat stocks, milk, white wine, soy sauce… pretty much anything that calls for a flavorful liquid.
Slow cooker, you’ve done it again.