Monthly Archives: May 2013

  • Slow Cooker Chipotle BBQ Beef Tacos with Mango Salsa

Slow Cooker Chipotle BBQ Beef Tacos with Mango Salsa

Posted on May 31, 2013
Category:

How is it almost June and I don’t own a grill?!?!

Summer is here. I have a wonderful patio overlooking the lake. And no grill. This is a problem.

Grill shopping just got moved up to the top of my “to-do” list.

In the meantime, I can still enjoy some sweet and smoky BBQ flavors at home using my crock-pot.

It’s all very simple. I make up a quick, 10 minute chipotle BBQ sauce on the stove top. Add that to my slow cooker along with a beef roast. And then I just sit back and let it cook ALL DAY long until the beef falls apart. Laziness = win. And also amazing house smells = win.

BBQ-Beef-Tacos-1

The mango salsa can be made at any point while the beef is cooking and stored in the refrigerator until you’re ready to eat. It’s cool and refreshing, and the perfect contrast to the warm, spicy chipotle BBQ beef.

These Slow Cooker Chipotle BBQ Beef Tacos with Mango Salsa are the perfect summertime meal. Even if you don’t have a grill. Yet.

Cheers,

Liz

Slow Cooker Chipotle BBQ Beef Tacos with Mango Salsa

Serves about 6

Slow Cooker Chipotle BBQ Beef Tacos with Mango Salsa

Ingredients

  • For the Chipotle BBQ Beef
  • 1 boneless beef round roast (about 3 lbs), trimmed of excess fat
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 cups diced onions
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tsp. black pepper

  • For the Mango Salsa
  • 2 champagne mangos (sometimes called honey mangos), peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup diced red onion
  • 1/2 jalapeno, diced
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • Zest and juice from 1 lime

  • For Serving
  • Corn tortillas

Instructions

  1. Place the beef roast in your slow cooker and set aside. I have a 6-quart insert for my slow cooker, but anything about 4-quarts should work fine.
  2. Make the chipotle BBQ sauce. In a large non-stick skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the diced onions and cook until softened, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and the remaining ingredients. Stir to combine and let the sauce simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Pour the chipotle BBQ sauce over the beef roast. Place the lid on the slow cooker and turn it on. Cook on LOW for 10-12 hours or on HIGH for 6 hours.
  4. About 30 minutes before the beef roast is finished cooking, remove the lid from the slow cooker and using a fork and a pair of tongs, pull the beef apart into shreds. The beef should come apart very easily at this point. It will look like there is a lot of excess liquid in your slow cooker. That is normal! Once you shred the beef, it will absorb most of this cooking liquid. Once shredded, replace the lid on the slow cooker and let it continue to cook for the remaining 30 minutes.
  5. Make the mango salsa. Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl. Cover and refrigerate until you are ready to serve the tacos.
  6. To serve, warm the tortillas so they are soft and pliable. You can do this either in the microwave, the oven or on the stovetop in a skillet. Fill the tortillas with some of the shredded chipotle BBQ beef and top with the mango salsa. Enjoy immediately.
  7. The mango salsa and shredded beef can be stored in airtight containers in your refrigerator for 2-3 days.
http://www.floatingkitchen.net/slow-cooker-chipotle-bbq-beef-tacos-with-mango-salsa/
  • Panzanella
  • Panzanella
  • Panzanella

Panzanella

Posted on May 29, 2013

This past January on a trip to Orcas Island I had the BEST panzanella salad of my life. It was at a little Italian place called Sazio di Notte. This week, I was on a mission to re-create that salad. Looking back, I wish I had written down everything in Sazio’s panzanella salad while I was eating it, because now I’m having trouble remembering it exactly. But I didn’t. At the time I guess I was too busy happily munching away to be bothered. Or maybe it was because I was under the spell of a little too much red wine. Oh well. Guess I’ll have to take a second trip back to Orcas Island so I can eat it once more (OK – you twisted my arm!).

The thing that stands out most in my memory about their panzanella salad was the whole roasted garlic cloves. Which is probably why I loved their version so much. I simply can’t get enough roasted garlic! So that became my starting point to building this salad. Traditional elements such as crisped rustic bread, tomatoes, red onions and basil are all here. And I added in some mixed greens and buffalo mozzarella.

The tomatoes are really the star of the show here. So make sure you have good ones. In the thick of summertime, tomatoes from your garden or local farmers market are the best choice. But you can also find reliably good heirloom or vine-ripened tomatoes at your grocery store nowadays. Even a few handfuls of cherry tomatoes would do the job in a pinch.

Cheers,

Liz

Panzanella

Serves about 4-6

Panzanella

Ingredients

  • For the Salad
  • 2 heads of garlic
  • 4 cups rustic Italian or French bread, cut into cubes (day old bread is great for this)
  • 1/2 red onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves
  • 3-4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 4-5 medium sized tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups mixed greens
  • 5 ounces buffalo mozzarella, cut into cubes

  • For the Dressing
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • Reserved tomato juice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper

Instructions

  1. Roast the garlic. Using a sharp knife, remove the top portion of the garlic heads, exposing the individual cloves. Place the garlic cut side up on a piece of aluminum foil. Drizzle each garlic head with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and then fold over the aluminum foil to cover the tops. Place the garlic in your cold oven. Turn the oven on to 300 degrees. After 30 minutes, uncover the garlic, drizzle with another teaspoon of olive oil and roast for an additional 45 minutes. Remove the garlic from the oven and let it cool slightly. Once it’s cool enough to handle, carefully remove the individual garlic cloves (you can do this with a fork and some gentle squeezing) and place them in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. Turn your oven up to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, toss the bread cubes and chopped red onion with the thyme leaves, 1/4 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet and roast in your pre-heated oven for 15 minutes, stirring halfway through. The bread should be lightly colored and crisp. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly.
  3. Meanwhile, chop the tomatoes into large chunks. Place the chopped tomatoes in a colander or strainer which is placed over a bowl (you want to collect the juices from the tomatoes). Sprinkle the chopped tomatoes with 1/4 tsp. salt, toss gently and let them sit for about 5-10 minutes.
  4. To make the dressing, whisk all of the ingredients together, including the reserved tomato juices.
  5. To assemble the panzanella salad, place the roasted bread cubes and onions in a large bowl. Add all of the dressing and toss to combine. Let it sit for 2-3 minutes to allow the bread to soak up some of the dressing. Add the roasted garlic cloves, chopped tomatoes, mixed greens, basil leaves and buffalo mozzarella. Toss gently to combine. Serve immediately. Dream of summer.

Notes

1. This salad is very flexible. Would you prefer more tomatoes? Then toss in an extra one or two. Want to add some chickpeas for protein? Go right ahead. You really can’t go wrong here.

2. Panzanella salad really has to be enjoyed right away or else the bread gets overly mushy. Mushy bread is not very delicious, in my humble opinion.

3. Tomatoes should NEVER be stored in the refrigerator. I cannot stress this enough. Putting them in the refrigerator will lead to unwanted changes in their texture and flavor. Leave them out on your counter top.

http://www.floatingkitchen.net/panzanella/

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