Crock Pot Beef Pot Pie Filling (AKA Stew)

I actually ate this for years and no offense, but we can do better.

I would like to thank the Universe for conspiring against me with regards to Crock Pot Beef Pot Pie.  It kept me from finding boxed pie crust in ANY OF THE FOUR STORES I went to looking for it.

I cursed you pretty hard at the time, Universe.  I could not fathom why you would be so cruel.  Store after store, I walked in full of assurance that there must be a box of pie crust in the refrigerator or freezer case .  And store after store, I walked out empty handed.  In my mind, I finally gave you a big WTF middle finger and decided that crust or no, I would look no further.

And yes, in the time that I spent trudging from Giant to Safeway to The Fresh Market to Superfresh, I could have made my own damn crust.  Or I could have watched the entire first season of Ink Master.  Either one would have been slightly less painful than hauling myself around the Beltway in search of that which the Universe had taken out of my reach.

Normally, when thwarted from procuring an ingredient so essential to a recipe, I get all cranky about not being able to color within the lines of the recipe and move along to something else.  But this time, I got a little rebellious.  Well, maybe rebellious is a bit strong.  It’s not as though I ran away, abandoning my responsibilities and common sense…I just left the crust off of my pot pie.

That’s me…living on the edge y’all.

Crock Pot Beef Pot Pie Filling (AKA Stew)

Adapted from Slow Cooker Revolution

BAH Note: If you’d like to serve this as pot pie, divide the filling between two 9 inch pie plates, cover each with one boxed pie crust (trimming and crimping the edges and cutting four vent holes into each) and bake at 425 degrees for 25 minutes.  ATK says the filling can be refrigerated for 2 days, or frozen for a month, before assembling the pot pie.  You will want to reheat the filling on the stove and add additional broth to get your desired consistency.

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 10 ounces mushrooms, halved or quartered
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 can chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 pounds boneless beef chuck roast, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
  • 1 cup frozen peas

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat.  Add the onions, mushrooms, carrots, tomato paste and cook until for 8 to 10 minutes the vegetables soften and begin to brown.  Sprinkle the flour onto the vegetable mixture and cook for 1 minute before whisking in the broth and wine.  Scrape any bits off the bottom of the pan and transfer the vegetable mixture to the crock pot.

While the vegetables cook, season the beef with salt and pepper.

Once the vegetables have been transferred to the crock pot, add the soy sauce and beef.  Cook for 5 to 7 hours on high or 9 to 11 hours on low until the beef is tender.  Allow the filling to settle for a few minutes and then skim any fat from the top.  Add the peas, cover, and let them warm through before serving.

{printable recipe}

Shrimp and Black Bean Wontons

Black beans are one of those foods that has taken me a while to warm up to.  A long while.  Whenever I wander into Chipotle, I always get my burrito bowl sans beans since I don’t load up on the other fixings that could distract me from the fact that THERE ARE BLACK BEANS IN MY CHICKEN AND RICE.   Good Lord, if that doesn’t make me sound like a picky eater I don’t know what does.  But at least I don’t have any restrictions on letting my foods touch.  That has to be its own special kind of hell for parents of picky eaters.

So yes, distraction is my way of coping with black beans.  If a recipe calls for beans, I look to see if there are enough other ingredients that will provide camouflage.  Or strong flavors.  Major bonus points if both other ingredients and strong flavors are present in the recipe.  Sorry black bean burgers, you will never earn those bonus points in my grade book.

Despite my pickiness, I am slowly beginning to make my peace with black beans.  I don’t have a lot of recipes in my repertoire that use them but at least now I don’t turn my nose up at the rows of black beans lined up like soldiers as I walk through the grocery store aisles.  And occasionally, I even reach up and grab a can or two.

Shrimp and Black Bean Wontons

Adapted from My Morning Chocolate

BAH Note: I had more wontons than I had filling, so I baked some up like chips.  You could, if you were so inclined, deconstruct this recipe so that the wonton filling is baked up in a dish like a dip and served with the wonton “chips”.  Either way, black beans + shrimp + cream cheese + strong flavors = major bonus points.

  • 1/2 can black beans
  • 1 cup cooked shrimp, tails and shells removed
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon corriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese, softened
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • wonton wrappers

Rinse and drain the beans and place them in a large mixing bowl.  Chop the shrimp roughly and add it to the bowl of beans.  Add all remaining ingredients other than the wonton wrappers, stir to thoroughly combine, taste and add more spices or salt as necessary.  Cover the bowl and set it aside.

Heat the oven to 375 degrees and line two half sheet pans with parchment.

Place 10 – 12 wonton wrappers on each pan.  Spoon about 1 tablespoon of filling onto each wonton, not quite in the center.  Use a wet finger to moisten two sides of each wonton, fold each wonton in half to form a triangle, and press the edges with the tines of a fork to seal.

Brush the tops lightly with olive oil and bake for 10-12  minutes, rotating the pans halfway through, until the edges are browned and crisp.

{printable recipe}