Sunday, November 4, 2012

Crock Pot Beef with Broccoli and a Vegetarian Version

I sure have been using my crock pot a lot lately.  It's a pain in the butt to clean the huge, heavy ceramic pot that goes in it.  So worth the effort though.  Keeps the kitchen much cooler, the house smells wonderful all day long, its almost effortless, and the meat is always perfect.

I'd like to share this recipe with you that I found on dLife.  My husband thought it had a hint of an Asian taste to it, and he would be right because it has a little ginger in it.  It's not overwhelming...just a hint and a nice change up for a standard crock pot roast.

Here's what you need:

1 1/2 - 3 lb beef roast, lean, cut into a couple pieces
3/4 lb carrots, peeled and in pieces
2 medium onions, cut into wedges
1 Tbsp fresh ginger root, finely grated or minced
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
1/2 C water
2 Tbsp soy sauce (low sodium is better)
1 packet dry beef gravy mix (I actually used mushroom gravy)
4 C fresh broccoli florets

1.  Place carrots, onions, meat ginger and garlic in a large slow cooker.
2.  In a small bowl combine water, soy sauce and beef gravy mix.  Pour over meat.
3.  Cover and cook on low heat for 8-10 hours or on high heat for 4 to 5 hours (mine took about 6 hours to get really tender, so just check it.)
4.  Then put the cooker on high, put in broccoli.  Cover and cook for 15 more minutes until broccoli is crisp-tender.

It was really delicious.  The meat was melt-in-your-mouth tender, the vegetables were perfectly cooked.  My roast today was not very lean, and the crock pot completely filled with fat/juice when it was done cooking.  So I'm thinking that if it was a very lean piece of meat the gravy sauce would be thicker.

I'm a little unsure of the nutritional stats because I think it all depends on your specific cut of meat.  For a 4 oz serving of meat with carrots and broccoli, it will be approximately 300 calories, 700mg potassium, 600mg sodium, 20g carbs and 35g protein.

Also, whenever I made anything like a beef roast before my vegetarian daughter was completely out of luck because I did not have any suitable vegetarian products that I could convert the recipe to.  Until now.  I found a new product that I am totally excited about.  It's been around for a while, but it is really hard to find.  I found just a couple different items at Safeway.  You can go to Gardein's website and look at there store finder, although I will warn you, it was not accurate for me.  They listed several stores that did not carry it.  You'll just have to look around.  I found these "beefless tips":

It was enough to make 2 single serving meals, and it was under $4.  Such a bargain.  Sami is so excited now that she can have pot roast again.  Here's what hers looked like:
I steamed the vegetables, mixed them in with gravy, heated up the "meat" and then stirred it all together.  So easy, and she was in Heaven.

Hope you enjoy your Beef with Broccoli stew!
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