Saturday, January 30, 2010

# crock pot # recipe

Save the Planet Saturday -More Electric Bill Tips

Since last week's tip on how to lower your electric bill seemed to be a bit of a hit, I thought I'd give you a few other ways to help keep it down, especially since a good chunk of us have our furnaces running which always runs up those winter heating/electric bills.

1) If you have a computer at home (and I'm guessing most of you do, otherwise you're blog hopping at work..shame, shame..*grins*), turn off the monitor when it's not in use. This could save you over $50 over the course of a year. This also works with your coffeemakers and TV's.

2) Set your thermostat to 68. If you think 68 isn't warm enough, consider this: for each degree you raise your thermostat above 68, you can expect to pay about 5% more in heating costs. In the summer, the optimal temperature is 78.

3) Since you just can't help having to have the furnace on, consider lowering your draw on your household power grid, by cooking your meals with small appliances. Microwaves, toaster ovens and crock-pots all use much less energy than stove tops or electric ovens.

To help you get started, I'm including one of my favorite crock-pot recipes:

Home-Style Chicken and Dumplings

Prep: 15 minutes Cook: 7hr + 35 minutes


1 large potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 medium carrots, sliced
1 can (14.5 ounces) chicken broth
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dried marjoram leaves
1/4 tsp pepper
8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (2 lbs)
1 package (10 ounces) frozen green peas, thawed
1.5 c bisquick
1/2 c milk
Paprika, if desired

1. Place potato and carrots in slow cooker. Mix broth, flour, salt, marjoram and pepper and pour into slow cooker. Add chicken.
2. Cover and cook on low heat setting for 6-7 hours or until juice of chicken is no longer pink when center of thickest pieces are cut. Stir in peas. Cover and cook on high heat setting 15 minutes.
3. Mix Bisquick and milk until Bisquick is moistened. Drop by spoonfuls onto chicken mixture. Sprinkle with paprika. Cover and cook on high setting about 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center of dumplings comes out clean. (4 servings)


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