Just like outside, there are signs of Fall in the column today. You will see what I mean when you read through the column. Today there are a couple good recipes just right for the crockpot. The Barbecue Pork with Apples is one of them. I made that this week, but I made a few changes. First of all, I did not use a pork loin; I used pork chops that I found on sale, and I used about 5. I did not cook mine in the crock pot, but I put them in my Dutch Oven and put it on my grill on the side I did not light, and I kept the other side at about 350 for a few hours until I was satisfied with the degree of tenderness. This is one of my favorite ways of cooking, and all I have to do is check on it from time to time to make sure it has not gone dry. With some fresh cole slaw and some cornbread fritters, it made a good meal. It would have made a good barbecue sandwich on a bun, too. Next, I am a great fan of “dump” cakes because they are quick and easy, always delicious and you never have to worry about how they are going to look. Speaking of cakes, maybe you read of my lemon cake debacle a couple weeks ago. Well recently I made a Lady Baltimore Cake which calls for a boiled icing much like 7-Minute Frosting. I reckon I cooked it too long or else my thermometer was off because after a day the icing turned to sugar and all but disappeared. So, consider this an all-call for the no-fail 7-Minute Frosting. I hate to be outdone, and I am determined to make that cake again and have it be just right, so help!

I first fell in love with Sloppy Joes at Morgantown Elementary many years ago, and they have remained a favorite. Look for a simple recipe in today’s column which makes up just fine with venison also! While they are often eaten on buns, I like mine with cornbread, too, or else over a baked potato.

Hopefully I have given you an idea or two today. Stay safe, be careful and be in touch!

Barbecued Pork with Apples

1 pork tenderloin

1 can of apple pie filling

1 large diced white onion

2/3-ish bottle of sweet baby Ray’s or any other barbecue sauce you like or have on hand—to taste

On high for sic to eight hours.

Autumn Apple Cake

5 to 7 apples

1 (9 oz.) pkg. yellow cake mix

2 Tbs sugar

1 Tbs. ground cinnamon

1 stick real butter

Preheat oven to 350°. Fill a 9x13 pan half full with apples which you’ve peeled, cored and sliced thin. Sprinkle the apples with dry cake mix. Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over the cake mix. Melt butter and drizzle over. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Stuffing Casserole—Another Crockpot Goodie!!

1 medium onion, sliced

1 (1 lb.) pkg. baby carrots, sliced in half lengthwise

1/4 cup water

1 to 2 lbs. pork steaks, chops, chicken breasts or boneless thighs (whatever you have on hand)

Salt and pepper

1 (10.75 oz) can cream of mushroom soup

1 (10.75 oz.) can cream of chicken soup

1/4 cup milk

1 (6 oz.) box Stove Top Stuffing (I used turkey because that’s what I had)

3 Tbs. butter, sliced into thin pats

Spray casserole crockpot with nonstick spray. Separate onion slices and spread in bottom of dish and top with carrots. Place pork steaks on top of vegetables and season with salt and pepper. (I used a seasoned salt mix on mine) Stir together the two soups and the milk. Pour over steaks and spread to cover all. Sprinkle dry stuffing mix on top of soup mixture and top with thin pats of butter. Cook on high two hours, then turn to low for another three to four hours.

Shrimp and Asparagus Quiche

4 egg whites

2 eggs

1 cup low fat cottage cheese

1 Tbs. olive oil

1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces

1/2 white onion, chopped

2 tsp. olive oil1 pound peeled and deveined shrimp

Salt and ground black pepper to taste

1 (9-in.) unbaked deep dish pie crust

1 (8 oz.) pkg. shredded Monterey Jack cheese.

3 green onions, chopped

Preheat oven to 375°. Pour egg whites, eggs, and cottage cheese into a blender, pulse several times to mix and blend until smooth, about one minute. Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, cook and stir asparagus and onion until asparagus is tender, about eight minutes. Heat two teaspoons of olive oil in the same skillet over medium heat. Season shrimp with salt and black pepper, cook in hot oil until they turn pink and are no longer translucent in the center, five to eight minutes. Fit pie crust into a 9-inch, deep-dish pie plate and spread shrimp into the crust, top with asparagus mixture. Pour cottage cheese mixture over vegetables and shrimp. Spread Monterey Jack cheese over the top of the quiche. Sprinkle green onions over cheese. Bake quiche in the preheated oven until cheese topping is lightly browned and the quiche is set in the center, about one hour.

Sloppy Joes

Richard’s Note: You can adjust the sweetness by adding just a bit of vinegar to this recipe. Taste and go slow! You can also cook this on low in the crockpot once you have browned and drained the meat.

1 lb. ground beef, browned in a skillet and drained of grease

1 cup ketchup

1/4 cup water

2 Tbs. brown sugar

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

2 tsp. yellow mustard

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. onion powder

1 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper

Return ground beef to the skillet after draining the grease. Mix remaining ingredients in a bowl, then add to the ground beef. Mix together until well combined. Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to simmer and cook for 15 to 20 minutes.

Broccoli Bread

Richard’s Note: This is a fun twist on cornbread, and this makes nice muffins or mini muffins too!

1 pkg. frozen broccoli thawed and chopped and drained but not cooked

1 large onion, chopped

6 oz. cottage cheese

1 stick butter, melted

4 eggs beaten

1 tsp. salt

1 box Jiffy cornbread mix

Mix all except Jiffy-add it last. Bake in greased 9x13 pan for about 25 minutes in a 400° oven.

Crock Pot: Chicken & Dumplings

Richard’s Note: Don’t be afraid to try this. It is easy and delicious. Sometimes I pressure cook the chicken and then proceed from there on top of the stove and don’t use the crockpot. But the crockpot is perfect when you need that convenience.

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

2 Tbs. butter

2 (10.75 oz.) cans condensed cream of chicken soup

1 onion, finely diced

2 (10 oz.) packages refrigerated biscuit dough, torn into pieces

Place the chicken, butter, soup, and onion in a slow cooker, and fill with enough water to cover. Cover, and cook for five to six hours on High. About 30 minutes before serving, place the torn biscuit dough in the slow cooker. Cook until the dough is no longer raw in the center.

Crockpot Ranch Pork Chops

Richard’s Note: This is another one of my favorite, secret recipes!

1 pkg. of boneless pork chops

1 can of cream of chicken soup

1 packet dry Ranch dressing mix

In crockpot layer pork chops, add the cream of chicken soup, then sprinkle dry Ranch dressing all over. Cover and cook on high for four hours OR low for six hours.