Is it perhaps time for me to give up crock-pot cooking???
As I mentioned last week, I dug out the crock pot, purchased Mable Hoffman's (highly recommended) book and decided to get cooking.
Unfortunately only one of my three attempts was a success. DH and DS actually liked the Sloppy Joes and they were edible (non-gourmet but we're talking crockpots here). Basically, my first reaction was that the meat cooked for too long. The flavor was reminiscent of Sloppy Joe's I haven't tasted since middle school (I suppose this could be good or bad, depending on who is eating it). I decided that for the next recipe, I would decrease the cooking time because I thought my own crockpot might run a bit too hot (A Corningware large oval pot from the early 80's--I'm guessing it would hold about 12 cups). The next dish I made from Mables book was Sorrento Chicken Roll-Ups. These received great reviews so, I thought it would be a no-brainer. These required chicken breast (paillards--I think) pounded into 1/2 inch thickness and rolled with prosciutto and a mustard/herb mixture. I decreased cooking time by one hour and these were still cardboard in texture. DH wouldn't even eat the leftovers and if you knew him, you would be shocked. Finally, today, I made Mable's Beef Stroganoff. I bought the Round Steak as required, cut it into 1/4 inch thick slices..etc. While the flavor of this dish was great, the meat was way too dry. I re-checked my measurements for liquids and I was accurate.
Currently, I have Mable's "Grandma's Rice Pudding" in the crockpot and if this doesn't prove to be a success, I will have to end the relationship.
Any ideas on what I might be doing wrong? Is it possible that my unit just runs way too hot? Any recommendations for a fool-proof brand of crockpot?
Oy, the frustration.