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First of all, I hope that you are all safe & warm from the inclement weather that is sweeping across the country.
Here in the Northeast, we have 14 inches of snow, strong winds and single digit temperatures with wind chills below zero. Not very pleasant.
Please check in on your neighbors to see if they are okay, especially the elderly during this harsh weather.
I have a few recipes that I want to share with you today to hopefully make life a little easier during this weather. It’s brutal to go outside to shovel snow for hours in this blustery weather and then come in and have too start a meal for the family when you are exhausted.
The first recipe is one that I have been using for years and it is fantastic. It is …
Whole Chicken in a Slow Cooker
You season your chicken with a dry rub, into the crock pot with some veggies and you are free for 8 hours to do your other errands (like shoveling). I highly recommend you try this…
Cooks note- In the photo below, I roasted additional vegetables in the oven because I am saving the vegetables in the crock pot for chicken stock.
(I roasted potatoes, parsnips, carrots, red onions, garlic and brussel sprouts)
Here is the recipe. I found it on Thelittlekitchen.net
WHOLE CHICKEN IN A SLOW COOKER RECIPE
RUB INGREDIENTS FOR THE CHICKEN…
- 4 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon white pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
FOR THE CROCKPOT
- 1 cup chopped onion, approx. 1 medium to large onion
- 4 to 5 carrots, scrubbed, no need to peel, chopped in halves or thirds (I peeled them)
- 4 celery stalks, cut in thirds
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
- 1 whole lemon quartered
- 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 lbs. roasting or fryer chicken
- Combine rub ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. Prep the vegetables and place inside the slow cooker (I use a 7-quart oval).
- Remove chicken from packaging and remove neck and pouch with organs. Discard or reserve for later use in another recipe. Rinse chicken with water and pat dry with paper towels.
- Rub garlic all over outside of the chicken. Put garlic inside the chicken. Put the rub all over the outside and inside the chicken. Add quartered lemon to the inside of the chicken. (I also added parsley inside the chicken).
- Place chicken on top of the vegetables. Cover slow cooker and cook chicken on low for 4-8 hours. (When I used a 4 lb chicken, it took about 6 hours. The time will depend on the size of the chicken and your slow cooker.) Cook until the internal temperature of the leg is at 160 degrees F or use a pop-up thermometer as the original recipe calls for.
- Remove chicken and place in a 9×13 glass or ceramic baking dish. Place baking dish in the oven under the broiler for about 4-5 minutes. Allow chicken to rest after removing it from the broiler for 5-10 minutes.
I make chicken stock with the veggies and juices in the crock pot.
Chicken Stock in the Crock Pot
- Leftover chicken bones or carcass roughly equivalent to one small or medium sized chicken
- 1 onion, peeled and loosely chopped
- 1 rib of celery, roughly chopped
- 1 carrot, roughly chopped (no need to peel)
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 sprig fresh parsley
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- Salt, to taste
Note: If you are missing any of these ingredients I wouldn’t let that stop you from making it anyway.
- After removing all edible meat from the chicken put/leave the bones, skin, cooking juices, etc. in the crock pot. If you are using the chicken carcass from the “Whole Chicken in the Crock Pot” recipe just leave every single thing that’s leftover (except the good meat of course) in the crock pot including the original onion and spices you used when making the chicken.
- Add the onion, celery, carrot and spices on top of the bones and fill the crock pot almost to the top with tap water (leaving about ½” at the top).
- Turn the slow cooker onto “low” after dinner and cook all night long or alternatively you could start it in the morning and cook on “low” for 8 – 10 hours during the day.
- After the stock is done cooking turn off the heat and, using a soup ladle, pass the stock through a fine sieve to remove all herbs/bones/etc.
Since cold weather calls for hot soup, here is another favorite recipe of mine.
This is a soup that my mother made for us all the time and it hits the spot.
Best part, it’s quick.
Having this soup and the crock pot chicken is a perfect combination.
Stracciatella Soup with Spinach (rice or pasta -optional)
Cooks Note: I add mini cheese ravioli to the soup whenever I can find them in the store, instead of rice. Lately, I have been lucky to find bags in Trader Joe’s. I think they look much cuter than rice.
- 1 ½ quarts of chicken broth (6 cups), homemade is best. Low sodium boxed chicken broth is fine too. Be sure it’s MSG free.
- 3 large eggs
- Grated cheese (½ cup)
- 1 tbsp. of semolina or fine breadcrumbs
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 2 cups fresh spinach (stems removed)
- Black pepper to taste.
- Heat broth in a saucepan and bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer.
- Add 2 cups spinach to the broth to wilt
- In a small bowl, beat together the eggs, grated cheese, nutmeg and semolina
- With a wooden spoon, swirl the soup in a circular motion while slowly pouring the egg mixture. Simmer for 1 minute
- (optional- 1 ½ cups of cooked rice or pasta of your choice can also be added)
- Serve the soup with some additional grated cheese and black pepper.
I hope you enjoy these recipes and stay safe and warm during the BIG CHILL.
Until my next post, make every day a celebration!
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Perfect meal for this Frigid weather we are having here. As always, your presentation is done with elegance and class! Stay Warm Diane!!
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Thank you Ellie. You are too kind as always. Stay warm yourself.
” How is anyone supposed to lose some weight for the new year”..,.LoL
You are simply amazing my dear friend. You are not left alone with the weather. Its been -20 here in Toronto and that’s not including factoring the awful wind. I hope you stay warm and safe.
Now your dish, for some reason I have a paranoia on dry rubs in the slow cooker. I always put a liquid base but I will try a whole chicken ( no organs when bought ~ ugh) with your recipe. That lemon is different. Never thought of that.
As for the stracciatelli soup. It was always a comfort soup my mom made. Its authentic and I decided to bring it back with my ex wife in our beautiful winter wedding in 2002 to warm up the guests, with eggnog, apple cider while the Victorian small band played near the large stone fireplace entrance.
Glad you have such beautiful memories of your mama e nonna’s recipes all the time.
*P.S* When I opened your Christmas card it brought joy to my heart. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful family with me. You’re a blessing a God Bless your family always.
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Always a pleasure to hear from you Sam. Thank you for the beautiful card. Your description of your winter wedding sounds so lovely -purely magical. It’s funny how we have the same warm and comforting memory of our moms and stracciatelli soup. It just warms my soul. I hope the weather gets better for you. I have been in the house for over a week (cooking of all things-LOL). Whenever it snows or is cold, I need to make soup.I have always been that way. I wish you many blessings for 2018 and I will talk to you soon.
Thank you. I hope you try the recipes. Stay well- Diane
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Wow those look like great recipes for the chilly weather!
Thank you. I hope you try them and thanks for reading the blog. Stay well.
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