Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Allow me to introduce myself....I am

Yep. That's me. Queen O' the Crock Pot! I'm telling you, I have become a maniac in the kitchen since I discovered how to use this thing! (Susan. Stop laughing!) I've made some pulled pork that is just Out.Of.This.World.Yum-O (in my own humble opinion, of course). Last night I made something called Mediterranean Chicken (Randey loved it, I thought it was pretty good and Jacob ate everything on his plate, therefore I will declare this recipe a success, as well). Last week I made Apricot Glazed Pork Roast. (That sounds so fancy, doesn't it?) lol It was mighty tasty, I don't mind telling you. I'm making it again tonight, as a matter of fact. For you guys to understand the total weirdness of me cooking, you'd have to know just exactly how much I despise cooking. I am not a cook. I am an eater. There's a difference. Spending too long in the kitchen trying to create something is sheer torture for me. It's not an area of the house that I feel....what's the word?....competent, yeah, that's it...competent. Most cookbooks may as well be in a foreign language, for all the sense they make to me. However! Crock pot cooking has changed my whole outlook on this cooking thing. I mean really, most crock pot cookbook recipes are practically idiot proof (okay, so I had that one little issue with that one stupid recipe, but let's not get into that). I can throw 75% of our evening meal together by 9:00 in the morning and can kick back and not think about it for the rest of the day. When dinner time rolls around, I only have to do one or two things (like make rice, mash some potatoes, fix a vegetable or something) and dinner is done. Oh yeah, baby...my kind of cooking. Although, I have to admit that the pulled pork recipe does require a little more work about an hour before we eat...I have to actually pull the pork apart and mix in the BBQ stuff. Still, easy work. This kind of cooking makes me as happy as I'll ever be inside a kitchen. So anywho, rather than throw in 3 or 4 recipes at a time, I'll just post one now and then one later, etc., etc.. I'll give you the Apricot Glazed Pork Roast today. Here goes:

1 can (10 1/2 ounces) condensed chicken broth
1 jar (18 ounces) apricot preserves
1 large onion, chopped (I actually slice my onion because
I have a kid who would rather stick needles under his fingernails than voluntarily eat an onion. He can pick the sliced ones out easier than if I chopped them!)
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 (3 1/2 to 4 pound) boneless pork loin roast

1. Mix broth, preserves, onion and mustard in the crock pot. Cut pork roast to fit and add to the crock pot also.
2. Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 9 hours or on HIGH for 4 to 5 hours or until done.

Tip: For thicker sauce, mix together 2 tablespoons cornstarch and 2 tablespoons water. Remove pork from crock pot. Stir cornstarch mixture into cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH for 10 minutes or until mixture boils and thickens.

This recipe came out sooooo tasty last week. I can't remember what I served with it then, but tonight I'll add some green beans and potatoes au gratin (thank you very much Betty Crocker Deluxe Potatoes Loaded Au Gratin in a box). Man. Who'd have thought I'd ever sit around planning dinner like this? (Again, stop laughing, Susan!).
Okay, cooking time is over...on to other things. I decided I needed a new front door wreath the other day. My old one wasn't looking springy or fresh. I headed to Hobby Lobby, bought a little this and a little that and here's what I came up with: I need to move some stuff around on it. Too much pink located on the right hand side, not enough fluff on the top left but, generally, I like how it turned out. It's springy/early summer looking and that's what I was aiming for. Now check out this:How cool is this cabinet? Randey and I were at the Benbrook Antique Mall (betcha Teresa knows where that's at!) a few weeks ago and came across this. The price was great! Okay, so maybe the price was average, but it looked great so we snapped it up. I haven't really spent any time setting up the display items inside of it yet. The top where it says "telephone" can be replaced (it's just printed on paper and put inside the glass). I think I'll print up something using a Star Wars style font and put it in there instead of the word "telephone". Maybe I'll print up the word "hyperlink" or "hologram" (Star Wars lingo for "telephone". lol). I haven't decided. Next, get a load of this:My sister, Sherri, sent this to me. Do you have any idea how hard it is to find something with the word "Granny" on it? Everything says "Grandma" or "Nana". What up wid dat? My granddaughter (the one that can talk, that is!) calls me Granny. Anyway, the funny thing is, I saw this Jim Shore statue - well, not this one, but you know what I mean - about 3 or 4 weeks ago when we were in Canton, Texas. A few days after I saw it, I talked to Sherri and she asked me if I'd seen it. She, herself, had spied it when she was out shopping somewhere and it caught her eye because of the word "Granny". I thought it was so funny that we'd both seen it at about the same time. I laughed and told her that I'd shown it to Randey, giving him a hint at how much I liked it, but he didn't seem fazed by my hint (he says now that he was just waiting for the right moment! lol). I had to laugh when I opened the box from her. I truly did like this thing when I saw it and knew I'd have to have it sooner or later. 'Course, she told me that her husband said the wolf disguised as Granny was my "true self coming out", but I can rise above that sort of petty talk and see it for the sweet thing it was meant to be. lolololol
Now for some kind of sad news...see Blu Boy, our chow-chow? Isn't he a beauty? This picture was taken back in September, I think. Notice how pretty his coat looks?Yeah. Well. After wintertime, his coat isn't quite so shapely. It's usually thick, ragged, and falling out all over (although it seems to aim mainly for my off-white carpet most of the time). Every year, we get him shaved because of that. He hates it for the first couple of weeks and we have to keep him coated with sunscreen (SPF 50!), but once it starts growing back in, his coat is as soft and silky as can be. Unfortunately, Blu doesn't take too well to the shaving thing. In fact, he's decidedly unfriendly about the whole process. The vet routinely sedates him for these ordeals (it's better for him...he gets entirely too stressed during his grooming!). Anyway, yesterday was that time of year for him. Randey took him in and stayed with him until they put him under. Apparently, they didn't figure up the dosage correctly or they waited too long before they started trimming because just before the procedure was over, Blu started waking up. And he wasn't happy. They'd gotten just about everything shaved....except his feet and under his chin. Now look at the poor thing....He looks like he's wearing boots. The groomers opted to give us a discounted price for the grooming rather than attempt to trim his paws. Blu's attitude was the deciding factor. He let them know that he was F-I-N-I-S-H-E-D with them and was ready to part company. So this is how he looks. I guess we'll get used to his boots. I'm sure we will. It's better than last year, actually. Last year, they insisted on doing the "lion" cut. They left his mane, which was okay, but they also left this giant ball of fur on the end of his tail. Every time he'd see his tail wagging out of the corner of his eye, he'd jump sideways, thinking something was sneaking up on him. lol Poor Blu Boy. Even Sydney the Wonder Dog has been looking at him with pity today....


  1. Oh, that poor doggy! I laughed - I'm so sorry. I'm taking Teddy to be clipped on Thursday. We don't get him shaved that close though.

    The pork roast recipe sounds yummy! I happen to have a pork roast in the freezer. Just need to get the apricot preserves. I love cooking in the crock pot - I did some spaghetti sauce with meatballs last week and it was soooo good!

    I love the telephone booth! I have a pay phone on the wall in my kitchen - I posted a picture of it way back on October 17. We should get the two together!

  2. I love my crock pot, too, Kari! I use it whenever possible...having supper out of the way by 9 AM is heaven!!

    I called my grandmother, Granny and my children called my mother Granny and you are right..there isn't a thing with Granny on it, to be found anywhere.


  3. Hi Kari,

    Okay, I am so sorry but I LOL when I seen the photo of your pup. I love cooking in the crockpot only my hubby likes to give my stuff away to the kids and he gave mine to Jimmy & Allison last month. I especially love it when he does this sort of thing and doesn't tell me. :-) Kat has a great sweet and sour meatball recipe that I put in the crockpot and everyone loved it. I love that telephone booth, what a cool way to display things. Does it light up? Glad to see you up and blogging again. Love your sidebar with your grandbabies on it. Okay, how many times did I say I loved something in this comment? LOL

  4. Poor Blu Boy! But it'll grow and he will be so much cooler. LOL!

    The crockpot recipe sounds delicious. You can keep your job as the crockpot tester!

  5. I need to break out my crockpot and start using it more! Your pulled pord recipe sounds delicious so I will have to try it!!!
    Your poor Blue Boy!!!! He looks really pissed and who could blame him really? I hope his fur grows back fast...poor little guy!

  6. LMAO!!!! Poor blu! That is the funniest sight I've seen in a while!!

    Thanks for the recipe.

  7. Kari,I am so wanting that phone booth.

  8. I love using the crockpot too and have tons of recipes I fall back on! It's just so easy and always good!
    Cute phone booth!
    I am lol at that dog. As I was reading I thought it sounded like a good idea for our dog with the same problem...

  9. Tears! We've got tears here!!

    Whatever the heck I was going to say about your post is right out of my head. Oh My Gosh, that is the funniest thing I have seen in a long time.

    Man Kari, He just looks so....nekkid. And the pose on the stairs - OMG-osh this is just hysterical.

    I'll be back later after I have composed myself to comment on the content of your post. OMG! Funny!

  10. Kari, that is the funniest thing I have seen in a long, LONG time. I showed my hubby, and he said "Poor doggie". We had chows, and I know how they get when they have decided NO MORE.

    Reminds me of a time we had this huge part shepherd, part collie dog, and we had her shaved. I drove by the vets and saw this "mule deer" tethered to a tree. Lo and behold, yep you guessed it, it was my dog. She was so embarrassed she stayed under the barn for hours.

    Hope Blu has more confidence in himself than that.

    But, really, it's funny. He could be a Star Wars creature!!

  11. Okay, I'm sorry BLU but you too funny...wait a minute...okay, Blu you poor beastie, I hope you bit the living crap out of the jerk that did that to you. I hope you bite your vet for not correcting the problem that leaves your beautiful coat in such shape that you have to be shaved. Poor Baby.
    And Michael would be so jealous of your TARDIS (TARDUS?) He is a Dr Who nut and would love that! Actually I sort of love it myself. When you're ready to be rid of it let me know? I'll take it off your hands!
    Aunt Sandi

  12. I love to cook,but some days I adore my crock pot. I put it in and forget about it.....


  13. OH MY GOSH YOUR POOR DOG~! He looks so goofy :) He probably doesnt want to be seen by anyone around town huh? Kind of like us gals when we receive a bad hair cut

  14. Get that pup some clothes! He looks naked!

    I have the "Fix it and Forget It" cookbook and Love it! But after a winter of crock pot cooking I'm ready for some grilling.

  15. Is it mean that I ROARED laughing when I saw this picture? Oh you are just way too funny! I had to show the whole family! The ball on the end of the tail thing really did me in!

  16. Oh Blu Boy!!! What did they do to you sweet guy?? I can just see Sydney's face! When Kip comes in from being groomed, all sweet smelling and a bandanna around his neck, he struts his stuff. If anyone does not make over him, he pouts. Oh baby does he pout. Of course, we all usually tell him how gorgeous he is. : )



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