16 October 2009

3 Recipes: 3-Step Slow Cooker Baby Back Ribs, Sweet Tangy Slaw, Sweet Potato Roasted Garlic Turnovers

From Denny: These recipes are all crowd pleasers for that tailgating, family gathering or any time and are easy for the busy parent now that school is back in session.

All recipes are easy. Ribs can be intimidating and turn out tough if you don't know how. Well, this recipe is a simple one that delivers the taste and tenderness because of the long time spent in the slow cooker! Step one? Cut the ribs in half to fit the slow cooker. Step two? Make a dry rub and sprinkle on to the ribs. Step three? Now pour 18 ounces of your favorite barbecue sauce over the ribs and let them cook for the next four to five hours. Simple to let the slow cooker do all the hard work!

As far as barbecue sauce is concerned do try to avoid those made with high fructose corn syrup (literally passes go and goes straight to producing fat, no kidding!), MSG (brings on migraine headaches in those allergic to it) and excessively high levels of sodium.

You will enjoy the fun of making the Sweet Potato Garlic Turnovers. All you do is mash together cooked sweet potatoes and garlic, then stuff them as a filling into little pastry rounds from the refrigerated section of your grocery store. These were a bit hit even with children!

The slaw has an Asian accent and is so easy to gather together that you can enlist the kids to be kitchen helpers. Try using a reduced fat version of mayonnaise in this recipe.

Enjoy making these simple pleasures sure to please everyone!

3-Step Baby Back Ribs in the Slow Cooker

From: Tracey Koch, food writer at 2theadvocate (they archive all recipes after a week and then charge to view)

Serves: 6


2 sides baby back pork ribs
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cumin powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1 (18-oz.) bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce


1. Turn the slow cooker on High and rinse the baby back ribs. Pat them dry and cut them in half to fit into your slow cooker.

2. In a small bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients and sprinkle it over the ribs.

3. Place the seasoned ribs into the slow cooker and pour the sauce over them. Cover and cook on High for 4 to 5 hours or until ribs are tender.

Kitchen helpers: Kids love to eat ribs and these take no time to make. Have your kids mix up the dry ingredients and help season the ribs and put them in the slow cooker.


Savory Sweet Potato and Roasted Garlic Turnovers

From: Tracey Koch

Makes: about 30 to 32 turnovers when using a 3-1/2-inch round cutter.


1 head garlic
2 tbls. olive oil
3 large sweet potatoes (peeled and cut into chunks)
2 tsps. melted butter
2 tsps. salt
1/2 tsp. cumin powder
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/3 cup milk
2 pkgs. pie dough (in the refrigerator section)


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and place the garlic into a piece of foil and drizzle it with the olive oil. Cover up the garlic pod and roast for 30 to 35 minutes or until the garlic is tender. Allow to cool.

2. While the garlic is cooling, bring a large pot of water to a boil and add 1-1/2 teaspoons salt.

3. Add the cut-up sweet potatoes and cook until tender, about 10 minutes.

4. Drain sweet potatoes well and return them to the pot.

5. Squeeze the bulb of roasted garlic out into the drained sweet potatoes and begin mashing them together.

6. Add remaining ingredients and keep mashing until everything is incorporated and the mixture is smooth.

7. On a lightly floured surface, unfold the pie dough and, using a 3-1/2-inch round pastry cutter, cut out circles.

8. Place a couple of teaspoonfulsl of the sweet potato filling on one side of the circle, making sure to leave a little room on the edge to crimp. Fold the unfilled side over to form a crescent shape and crimp the edge with a fork to seal.

9. Put turnovers on a baking sheet and freeze in a single layer until frozen. Once the turnovers are frozen, transfer them into a freezer bag until you are ready to bake them.

10. To bake: Preheat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Bake as many turnovers as you need at a time. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden.

Kitchen helpers: This is a great do-ahead recipe that your kids will have fun making. From mashing the sweet potatoes to squeezing out the roasted garlic and cutting out the dough, there are plenty of steps to keep little hands busy.


Sweet and Tangy Slaw

From: Tracey Koch

Serves: 6


1/2 cup light mayonnaise or spread
1 clove minced garlic
1-1/2 tbls. apple cider vinegar
2 tbls. water
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 bag shredded cabbage
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup Craisins
1/4 cup roasted sunflower seeds
1/2 cup chow mein noodles


1. In a small mixing bowl, combine mayonnaise, garlic, vinegar, water and ginger. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

2. In a salad bowl, combine cabbage, green onions and Craisins. Toss with dressing; cover and chill for 30 minutes or so. Just before serving, toss in seeds and chow mein noodles.

Kitchen helpers: This is a fun way to get kids to eat cabbage. They’ll love the Craisins, chow mein noodles and sunflower seeds. Have them mix up the dressing and toss the salad together.

Thanks for visiting, everyone, and have a great weekend!
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