Let’s cut to the chase: up until a few months ago I had never made anything in a Crock Pot. (By the way, does one say Crock Pot or slow cooker? Am I going to get sued by the Crock Pot Association of America by using a trademarked term?) I suppose time will tell.
Last November I was doing a cooking demo and needed massive amounts of pre-prepped chili ready to go. I picked up a Crock Pot on sale at Costco and used it. Then there it sat in my basement for the next month or so.
I work from home so it felt weird having this thing on my counter when I could simply turn my stove to low and get the same results. I broke it out to keep some Ponche warm at Hiro’s birthday party and then used it again when I was assigned dinner duty for the teachers during Louisa’s school conferences. You could say I’m slowly warming up to the idea….get it? I’m freakin’ hysterical. I appreciate the convenience of the slow cooker: you put stuff in, go to work, come home, and dinner is sitting there ready for you. I mean how magical is that?! In an attempt to write recipes that are actually helpful, I’ve decided to get to know my Crock Pot a little better and make this one for team slow cooker.
Since I’m still a novice, I do have one question for all you Crock Pot experts out there: how do you stop the thing from boiling like mad? Even on low I can’t just get it to slowly simmer. Is this normal? I mean my soup still turned out great, so maybe since the thing is covered the whole time that’s part of its charm, but I’d love to hear from you if you have some words of wisdom on the subject.
Have a great weekend everybody!!!
- 8 pieces chicken (breasts, thighs, whatever you like best)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 poblano chiles, cored, seeded, and diced
- 1 bell pepper (any color), cored, seeded, and diced
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 (15-ounce) can chopped tomatoes
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground chipotle chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 cups half-and-half
- 1 cup (8-ounces) sour cream
- 10 corn tortillas, cut in half then cut into 1/2-inch thick strips
- 1 tablespoon oil
- chopped cilantro
- chopped avocados
- sliced jalapeños
- Season the chicken pieces all over with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, undisturbed, until brown on one side, flip and repeat on the other side, about 10 minutes total. Transfer with tongs to the Crock Pot.
- Add onion, poblanos, bell pepper, and garlic to the pan and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and starting to brown, about 10 minutes. Scrape into the Crock Pot with the chicken.
- Add tomatoes (with their juices), spices, and chicken broth to the Crock Pot and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8.
- About 30 minutes before serving, remove chicken pieces from the Crock Pot. Remove any skin and bone and shred meat into bite-sized pieces. Return chicken to the Crock Pot. Add the half-and-half, and sour cream and stir to combine. Taste and add more salt as needed. Return soup to a simmer.
- While you are waiting for the soup to come back to a simmer. Heat the oven to 400°F. Toss the tortilla strips and oil on a baking sheet. Spread into an even layer and bake until crisp, about 10 minutes, tossing occasionally. Sprinkle with salt.
- Serve the soup with a generous helping of tortilla strips, some chopped cilantro, and hunks of avocado, and a few slices of jalapeño if desired.