Saturday, 14 February 2015

A slow cooker's soupy pride...

I don't use my slow cooker often enough.... I am not at all organised and forget until it is too late.  But this time, it all went to plan.

At the weekend, I found some veal rib bones at Lucy's Veal at Walthamstow Farmers' Market.  Not much meat on them, not enough to make bbq ribs, but they were exceedingly cheap and perfect for enriching a stock to cook root vegetables and pearl barley for soup.

The bones were too long for the slow cooker, so I hacked them in half, and then stacked them in the cooker with carrots, swede, onions, celery, turnips , a teaspoon of salt and a fat little bouquet garni of thyme, parsley and bay leaves.  I covered this with water - probably a good couple of litres, but I didn't measure it, I just covered the ingredients.

I left this to simmer on the high setting for around 6 hours.  The meat slipped off the bones now, so I took the bones out, removed the meat, flaked any edible meat from the cartilage, and added that back to the stock.  In the meantime, I had been soaking a mug full of pearl barley, and now added that into the pot with a drained can of butter beans.  I checked the seasoning.. it was rather light on meatiness so I added a couple of teaspoons of Essential Cuisine Veal Stock powder, which beefed (or rather vealed..) it up nicely. 

I used some of the veg and pearl barley as a side vegetable dish for some roast chicken.

Then mashed some of the veg into the stock to make a delicious thick brothy soup for lunch the next day.

Deliciously easy and I have loads left. I shall be eating soup for days!!

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