Shannon Stacey

New recipe success!

I tried a new recipe last night. We’re an outrageously finicky bunch and we all dislike different things, so the number of meals all four of us will eat can be counted on one hand. This has inevitably led to our family eating the same few meals every single week.

I’ve tried in the past to introduce new meals and they’ve been unqualified failures. To put it in perspective—Tuesday night, when I warned the family Wednesday and Thursday nights would be new recipes, we went out to dinner to ensure we were fed decently at least once this week.

Last night I made Slow Cooker Italian Beef for Sandwiches from It’s a rump roast that spends the day steeping in a bunch of spices and crap. Then you shred it with a fork and serve it on bulky rolls.

Other than burgers, the two boys aren’t beef eaters. No steaks. No pot roast. Just cheeseburgers. So I told them to try the shredded Italian beef first, before building sandwiches. (I had deli ham as a back-up plan.) They gave it a thumbs up.

Yes, all four of us not only ate the same thing for dinner, but all four of us liked it!

I need to figure out how to tweak it a little for next time I make it. For one, there’s a spice we don’t like very much but, when there’s a gazillion different ones and you have no culinary palate, it’s hard to tell which. After comparing it to previous (failed) recipes, I’m thinking it might be the oregano. Might cut the amount of that.

And I don’t know if I overcooked the rump roast or undercooked it or if it was just a bad cut, but the shredding didn’t go well. It was more of a rip and tear that bent two forks in the process.

The important thing, though, is that the question of whether we’d want to eat that meal again was answered with a unanimous yes.

Tonight—chicken and dumplings. I’ve got my fingers crossed, but going two for two would be nothing short of a miracle.

6 comments to “New recipe success!”

  1. Jaci Burton
      · July 22nd, 2010 at 12:47 pm · Link

    I’m so excited you had a successful meal for your famliy they all ate it!

    As far as roast success, I can buy any old roast at the store, toss it in the crockpot for 5 hours on high (regardless of recipe), make sure I put at least 1/2 cup of water in there for moisture (unless recipe calls for some other kind of liquid), and I can pull it apart with a fork it’s so tender. Voila. That’s the secret. Minimum of 5 hours of high. Works every damn time for me.

  2. Jean
      · July 22nd, 2010 at 5:24 pm · Link

    I’m with Jaci. Somehow I missed that you have my situation, only triply worse. I just have one finicky eater, and it’s a bear introducing new recipes. At least he’s reached the point where he’s willing to try some.

    I think she’s got the secret for easy shredding. It sounded like it needed a little more time or a little more time on high heat to make the shredding easy. The combination of heat and moisture should do the trick.

  3. Shannon
      · July 23rd, 2010 at 4:43 pm · Link

    I don’t even know how it’s possible for me to screw that up, but I did.

    3.7 lb chunk of rump roast. I put it in (on high) at 12:30 and we ate at 5:30 and it steeped in 3 cups of (seasoned) water. I wonder if I need to factor in time for the crockpot to heat up and if it takes longer with a liner in it.

    I also think, after trying several recipes, that I must have a wee baby crockpot. The 3.7 lb roast barely fit and, with 3 cups of water, it was bubbling right to the top.

    The liner’s also huge in my crockpot, so maybe it was bunched and the lid didn’t seal well.

    I don’t know. I just know it tasted good, but wasn’t fall apart tender. Like I said, I bent two forks “shredding” it. :lol:

  4. Bev Stephans
      · July 25th, 2010 at 1:55 am · Link

    Your’re probably right about the oregano. Oregano should never cook for a long time as it turns bitter. You could try adding the oregano about 1/2 hour before the end of the cooking time or eliminate it altogether.

  5. Jewell
      · July 25th, 2010 at 4:29 am · Link

    Oh yeah, those crockpots with the huge liners have never worked for me. It really turns the darn thing into a SLOW cooker, even on high heat.

    As for cuts of roast, I’m like you, not a whole lot of luck. The only one I have found that consistently tenderizes in any cooking method (of than SSSLLLLLOOOOWWWW cooker) is the English Cut. Has a nice flavor to it, too.

    And oh how I wish I could do chicken and dumplings. Hubby won’t touch dumplings, though, or biscuits for that matter. Cream chicken over biscuits? Forget it. Makes my country girl heart bleed.

  6. Markus Milak
      · November 29th, 2010 at 1:24 pm · Link

    I’ve invited the family to ours this xmas for a traditional dinner, so obviously the roast is pretty central to that.. I found a ton of recipes at this roast recipe site (link removed, no longer working), but cant seem to decide on one – there’s too many to choose from! It is fun planning such a big christmas dinner though!

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