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Testing the Apple Crisp recipe from “Make It Fast, Cook It Slow” by Stephanie O’Dea

I didn’t intend for this blog to suddenly become PastaQueen’s book review bonanza, but that’s how everything landed, so let’s just go with it, ok? My friend, Stephanie O’Dea, who blogs at A Year of Slow Cooking just released her first cookbook, smartly titled Make It Fast, Cook It Slow: The Big Book of Everyday Slow Cooking. Please note the usage of the word “slow cooker” and not “crockpot” which is a trademarked term that we will avoid for fear of litigation.

Steph sent me a copy of her book, so I decided to kill two birds with one stone, or rather kill half a peck of apples with one recipe.

I dug out my mother’s slow cooker, which is literally older than I am, and grabbed nine apples from my freshly picked peck, to make the Apple Crisp recipe on page 402. This meant I got to use my favorite kitchen appliance, the apple slicer!

My knife skills are nothing to brag about, so I spent at least 15 minutes peeling the skin off of the apples, [...]

Starbucks winners

Congratulations to the winners of the Starbucks giveaway who I have already contacted and all of whom have already confirmed their wins: Pauline, tina (with no capital letter), Tina (with a capital letter), Donna B, Megan, Chrissy and Sara. Thanks for playing! And don’t worry, I weeded out all the double comments so no one had an edge over anyone else (except if your name was “Tina,” apparently).

And thank you, web server, for waiting until after I’d drawn the winners to meltdown. Judging by my readers’ devotion to Starbucks, if I’d lost any of the over 400 entries, I would have been thrown in a vat of hot expresso by a mob of cranky, decaffeinated readers…or perhaps they would have scalded me with a salted hot chocolate instead. After reading all your entries, I felt like an overwhelmed barista during the morning rush. You also gave me some ideas on some drinks to try, but I’ve got to say, I’m not a fan of the Americano.

Another interesting thing I learned, this time from the 40 [...]

Adventures in crockpotting – Crockpot Applesauce Chicken

Ever since I met Stephanie O’Dea at the BlogHer conference, who blogs at A Year of Crockpotting, I’ve wanted to try a crockpot recipe. Only, I don’t own a crockpot, which made it a little hard. So I called up my mother, who is the warehouse supervisor for the miscellany of our lives, and behold, she conjured up a crockpot from the back storeroom (aka her 2-bedroom apartment)!

Note its olive green complexion, which was as popular in kitchen appliances in the 70′s as disco and wide lapels. This crockpot was a wedding gift that outlasted my parents’ marriage. I decided to test how well Rival built their slow-cookers with the Crockpot Applesauce Chicken from Stephanie’s site.

4 frozen chicken breast halves or thighs

1 1/2 cups of applesauce

1 T dried onion flakes, or 1 yellow onion, chopped finely

1 T apple cider vinegar

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp black pepper

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

Put the frozen chicken pieces into your crockpot. Add the onion (if you are using the dried onion, wait and add it to [...]

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Jennette Fulda tells stories to the Internet about her life as a smartass, writer, weight-loss inspiration, chronic headache sufferer, and overall nice person (who is silently judging you). She does this at JenFul now, but you can still have fun perusing her past here.

Disclaimer: I am not responsible for keyboards ruined by coffee spit-takes or forehead wrinkles caused by deep thought.

Game of Thrones rape: Director Alex Graves says the sex "becomes consensual."
Totally agree with this article. Definitely the worst mistake the series has ever made.

Runaway stowaway survives Calif.-Hawaii flight: FBI - CBS News
If this had happened in a movie I would never have believed it was possible.

Fitbit, Nest data: How the companies are making money off you.
I don't have a FitBit or an employer, but if I did I wouldn't want them sharing information.

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