Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Crock-pot Stuffed Bell Peppers - The Mush That Launched a Thousand Ships

You can't really live in the midwest and not get gasps when you tell someone you don't own a Crock-pot. Truth be told, they've always intimidated me a little bit. I'm pretty involved during the cooking process and the idea of just abandoning my food all day to cook while I'm away gives me some strange level of anxiety. But I'm a mom now and rather than cooking for an hour every night after to work, I'd love to spend time with my son.

 So, cue that Crock-pot. The new working mom's solution. And now, my new arch nemesis.

 My first attempt was an abysmal failure. I found a recipe online for Crock-pot stuffed peppers, made my vegan tweaks, and set that baby up to cook for a modest 3-4 hours on high. I even got the fancy Crock-pot with the self-timer, so there was no fear of overcooking them. Or so I thought.

Eagerly, I went to open the lid hoping to find my first triumph in slow cooking only to find the MOST bland, MOST mushy peppers I have ever had the displeasure of consuming. These babies were loaded with chipotle field roast sausages, onions, garlic... they should have been jam-packed with flavor. Instead, the damn Crock-pot just bled it dry of all it's goodness and left me with what would probably be really great baby food.

 I didn't bother to bust out my DSLR for this failure, but here is the sad iPhone photo this recipe deserved:

I ate them, but only in the name of not wasting food.

So, dear vegans of the internet, what did I do wrong? Any advice for a slow cooker noob?