Sunday, January 24, 2010

Warm Moroccan Nights

Nothing is more wonderful than returning home from a long day of work on a cold and blustery day to the wonderful aroma of dinner cooking away.  A slow cooker is an essential tool in any kitchen especially for those crazy busy days with no time to cook.  I got my slow cooker last Christmas and it's been one of most favorite presents (Thanks Mom)!  With a little planning and prep work, on those busy days you can avoid the "drive thru" and come home to a nutritious, delicious meal.  Even if you don't have a family to feed (I'm a single gal cooking for me, myself, and I), slow cooker leftovers can often be frozen and saved for an emergency lunch or dinner!  Plus nothing is more tasty than a yummy stew seasoned with the tastes of a warm foreign country so I introduce

Moroccan Squash and Spinach Stew.


1 cup chopped carrots (about 3 medium)
1 medium butternut squash cubed (about 2.5 lbs)
5.5 cups shredded spinach
1 cup low sodium veggie broth
4 cloves chopped garlic
14.5 oz can no salt added diced tomatoes
1 tsp cumin ½ tsp cinnamon ½ tsp red pepper flakes
15 oz can no salt added garbanzo beans

1. Peel and chop butternut squash into half inch cubes and place in slow cooker
2. Chop 3 medium carrots (about one cup) and place in slow cooker
3. Chop/shred about 10oz of spinach (equals about 5.5 cups shredded) and place in slow cooker
3. Chop garlic gloves and place in slow cooker
4. Add 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes UNDRAINED to slow cooker
5. Add 1 (or 1.5) cups low sodium vegetable broth to slow cooker
6. Add spices and mix all ingredients
7. Cook on low for 5-6 hours depending on your slow cooker (very difficult to over cook-I cooked mine for almost 8)
8. Add 15 oz can of garbanzo beans and cook on high for five minutes
9.  Season with salt and pepper (I used garlic salt...muwhahahaha-I love garlic)
10. DEVOUR :)

Makes approximately 6 generous 1 cup servings.

Nutritional Stats (from Spark People): 163 calories, 1.6 grams fat, 10 grams fiber, 6.8 grams protein

In the slow cooker (doesn't it look pretty):

Because I'm lazy in the mornings, I chopped everything up the night before and put the pot from my slow cooker in my fridge overnight.  So the next morning, I popped it into the slow cooker and let it cook away while I was at work all day :)  It was a wonderful aroma to come home too especially on a cold, yucky, rainy day.  I put individual servings in containers and tossed them in the freezer so the next time I need a last minute meal-I have yummy stew waiting.

Do you have any good slow cooker recipes that you rely on?


  1. I've never used a slow cooker before. It sort of scares me to have it on all day while I'm not home although I know it's fine.

  2. Yummy! I love moroccan inspired food!!
    I love Indian things in a slow cooker. They get such great flavor through the day.
    Soups like black bean, chili, potato and leek, or split pea are great to come home to in the crock pot.