1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, lightly chopped
2 1/2 pounds Idaho potatoes, peeled and sliced about 1/8 inch thick (about 5 potatoes)
6 ounces grated Gruyere cheese (about 2 cups)
Kosher salt and freshly grated black pepper
Rub the insert of a 6-quart slow cooker very lightly with the butter on the bottom and 2 inches up the sides.
Whisk together the cream, broth, flour and thyme in a 2-cup measuring cup.
Arrange 1/3 of the sliced potatoes in an even and slightly overlapping layer on the bottom of the slow cooker insert. Sprinkle 1/3 of the Gruyere over the potatoes, and add 3/4 teaspoon salt and an even grating of black pepper. Drizzle 1/3 of the cream mixture evenly over the layer. Repeat with 2 more layers of potatoes, Gruyere, salt, pepper and cream mixture.
Press the potatoes down firmly to make sure they are submerged. Cover the slow cooker, and cook on high until the potatoes are tender and the liquid has thickened, 4 1/2 to 5 hours. Remove the lid, and let the potatoes rest for 15 minutes. (The sauce may seem thin at first, but it will thicken as it sits.)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups pearled barley
2 sprigs fresh thyme
3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
1 pound (1 bunch) asparagus, rough stalks trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
2/3 cup grated Parmesan
Zest of 1 lemon, plus lemon wedges, for serving
1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh mint
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in the barley and thyme, and cook, stirring, until the barley is just golden, about 2 minutes more.
Transfer the barley mixture to a 6-quart slow cooker, and add the broth, 1 1/2 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cover, and cook on high until the liquid is absorbed and the barley is tender, about 3 hours.
Discard the thyme, and stir in the asparagus. Return the lid to the pot, and cook until the asparagus is tender, 30 minutes more. Stir in the Parmesan, lemon zest, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Thin out the risotto to the desired consistency with warm water, as needed. Fold in the parsley and mint, and serve with lemon wedges on the side.
1/2 cup butter, melted
4 6-oz boneless pork chops
1 cup white wine
1 cup cranberry sauce
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 cup fresh thyme, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Lightly brown the pork chops in a skillet. In a small bowl, combine the butter, cranberry sauce and white wine. Arrange the pork chops in the bottom of the stoneware. Sprinkle the salt and pepper, onions and thyme over the pork chops. Pour the sauce into the stoneware and cook on Low for 6 to 8 hours or on High.
1 pound pecan halves
4 Tbs butter, melted
1 Tbs chili powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Combine all ingredients in Crock Pot. Cover and cook on high for 15 minutes. Turn on low, uncovered, stirring occasionally for 2 hours. Transfer nuts to a baking sheet and cool completely.
(Pack into glass jars and decorate with bows for holiday gifts)