Slow cooking: A boon for a fast-paced lifestyle

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 13 2010 12:00 a.m. MST

Also, cooking times vary with the different slow cookers, Petersen said.

"The older pots took so much longer to cook than new newer ones. And if it's a bigger pot, it will cook faster," said Petersen. "So get to know your own slow cooker."

Petersen, a stay-at-home mom, usually assembles her recipe at lunch time and it's ready for dinner. But, some recipes can be cooked for 8-10 hours for those who want to fill their slow cooker in the morning and then go to work for the day.

According to Rival Crock-Pot Web site, a cook time of 3-4 hours on the high setting will take 7-8 hours on the low setting.

For easier cleanup, you can spray the pot with nonstick cooking spray, or use one of the plastic liner bags made by Reynolds for slow cookers.

e-mail: vphillips@desnews.com

Pulled Pork Stuffed Biscuits

1 pound pork picnic roast

1 cup plain barbecue sauce

1 container large butter-flavored refrigerated biscuits (8 biscuits)

Dipping Sauce:

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon sesame oil

Place pork roast in slow cooker. Fill slow cooker with 1 inch of water. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or until meat is very tender.

Drain liquid. Shred the meat using 2 forks. Pour barbecue sauce on the pork and mix. Refrigerate, if making a day ahead. If not, cut each biscuit in half with a serrated knife. Spoon 1 tablespoon of pork in center of bottom of biscuit. Cover with the top of the biscuit, gather edges around filling and press to seal.

Generously spray a 2-quart baking dish (that fits inside your large slow cooker) with non-stick cooking spray.

Arrange all filled biscuits in a single layer, overlapping slightly if necessary. If all 8 biscuits don't fit in a single layer, spray a piece of foil with nonstick cooking spray on both sides. Place foil lightly on top of layer of biscuits and place the rest of the biscuits on top of the foil.

When finished, cover the dish with another piece of buttered foil, buttered side down.

Place small rack in bottom of slow cooker (if you don't have a rack, use balled up pieces of foil).

Add 1 inch of water (water should not come to top of rack). Place baking dish on rack. Cover; cook on high for 2 hours. Meanwhile, prepare dipping sauce by combining the vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, and oil in small bowl. Stir until sugar dissolves.

Serve biscuits with dipping sauce. Serves 8.

— Karen Petersen, www.365daysofcrockpot.blogspot.com

Thai Chicken and Noodles

1 1/2 lb chicken cut into 1/2 inch pieces

1 red bell pepper, cut into short thin strips

1 1/4 cups chicken broth, divided

1/4 cup soy sauce

3 cloves garlic, minced

3/4 tsp red pepper flakes, or to taste

2 tablespoon cornstarch

3 green onions, cut into 1/2 inch pieces

1/3 cup creamy or chunky peanut butter

12 oz hot cooked vermicelli pasta

3/4 cup peanuts or cashews chopped