My Sister’s Crock Pot Chicken Legs

My Sister's Crock Pot Chicken LegsThe following is a guest-post with recipe for crock pot chicken by my sister.  She stimulates a very important conversation about eating habits and social pressures with food, even at an early age.  Her experience certainly gives us adults reason to consider the foods given to our children outside the home and how they influence our kids’ eating habits, whether it be the foods themselves that provide this influence or the social pressures by adults or other children.  Perhaps more importantly, when you read the post below, reserve some thought for how we should all be open-minded when it comes to presenting children with foods.  Diversity is an important aspect of eating, and kids need to know that it’s ok to like and try lots of different foods.  It is also important to talk about the importance of healthy foods with our children, even at a very early age, so that good choices become habits that they keep into adulthood.  They may stray from these habits at times, and that’s ok, but if they understand their choices early on they are more likely to make good choices as they grow and mature.

I made the crock pot chicken legs below on a busy soccer night that doesn’t bring us home to dinner until almost bedtime!  My initial thought was, “What a great idea!”  I haven’t used my crock pot for years since we had to leave it behind while we lived in France due to the difference in voltage.  It was so easy to set up the crock pot chicken legs during my quick lunch break, starting the cooking process early afternoon.  When we returned home, “voila!”, dinner was served!  I’ve decided to make soccer nights, crock pot nights.  I will be posting crock pot recipes throughout the fall soccer season!

Please note that the photos below show my attempt at making this crock pot chicken.  I tweaked the recipe to include additional items that were in my pantry and fridge!  I would definitely make this dish again!

Thanks for the inspiration sis!


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My sister’s post

In a recent teacher-parent conference at our almost-2 year old’s school, my husband and I found ourselves suddenly in defense of real food. Our daughter – normally lively, social and chatterboxy – takes on a reserved personality when at school, or when school is even mentioned.

In response to our concerns, among other things the principle suggested that we are isolating our daughter socially by sending homemade lunch and snacks instead of having her eat school lunch.  I was taken aback, and disappointed.

While we have both chosen to pursue fulfilling, full-time careers, my husband and I still feel pangs of missing our daughter every day at work.  One way to show her our love while she is at school is to make lunch for her.  At 23 months, some of her favorite activities include going to the grocery store and the farmer’s market, playing with her wooden vegetables, making “pie” with wood chips at the park, and pulling her step stool up to the counter in the kitchen to help us wash vegetables and prepare meals.  She has even started to cut fruit on a chopping board (supervised, of course) with her very dull knife.

She delights at heirloom baby tomatoes, rainbow carrots, and toasted pecans, snatching bites before we can whisk them out of the bag and into the sink.  Our shopping, cooking and cleaning together build the connection that her bright little mind is more than capable of understanding – that of cause and effect between the love that goes into the preparation and comes out as lunch the following day.

The adapted Montessori philosophy that her school subscribes to focuses on the potential children have to cultivate a rainbow of intellectual health at a young age.  Shouldn’t that carry over to mealtime?  So why do they limit a child’s natural desire to explore by providing hot dogs, pizza, chicken fingers, pasta primavera and waffles on rotation?  Where is the color in that?

RECIPE: CROCK POT CHICKEN LEGS

This is a quick meal that hits the spot.  Serve with rice and a vegetable.  My daughter loves sharing organic snap peas with me (fresh or frozen).  She pops out the peas to eat; I get the pods:)

SERVES 4

  • 8 pasture-raised organic chicken legs
  • 1 package of sprouted, super firm, organic tofu
  • 4 cloves whole garlic
  • fresh ginger, 8-10 slices
  • 1.5 TBSP soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup water
Please note that I (Diverse Little Eater) made several adjustments to this recipe given the supplies I had on hand!  I had just run out of ginger root on the day that I decided to make this dish, so instead I added 1 tsp chili garlic paste.  The taste is very different from the ginger, but gives the dish a subtle kick.  Also, I had some ripe tomatoes and kelp noodles and decided to add them to the mix.  Finally, I served the whole meal on a bed of baby spinach to up our intake of greens! 

Place chicken legs (skin on) in crock pot with other ingredients.

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Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours.

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Add chopped kelp noodles and mix them into the warm chicken.

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Serve and enjoy!

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Note on cooking time.  It may take some experimenting to determine the best temperatures and times for your individual crockpot with different foods.  My initial attempt with my crockpot on the low setting took a good 6-7 hours before this dish was truly cooked so we ended up eating this meal the next night.  In the end I cooked it longer than 7 hours, which was a bit too much as the meat was falling off the bones.  Other types of meat and smaller pieces have cook times that can be quite short ~2-3 hours, so experiment and learn what times and settings work best with your crockpot!  Avoid over-cooking chicken in the crockpot as it becomes mealy and the bones can begin to cook and break down.  

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