The first time I was in the Netherlands, I picked up a few free cooking magazines offered by the local grocery stores. It was great way not only to start learning Dutch, but also to learn how to make some meals to make Niels feel at home here in America.
One of my favorite recipes is Albert Heijn's ovenschotel met gehaktballetjes en winterpeen, which translates to casserole with meatballs and carrots. This recipe was a big hit when I first made it at home, but I realized that I stopped making it because I didn't want want to take the time to run all the veggies through the food processor or make meatballs. I wanted to convert the recipe to keep the yummy comfort food taste without all the prep time.
After two successes in the crockpot, I'm happy to share this meal with you. As the weather cools down, I think you'll find this to be a nice addition to your comfort food repertoire.
Dutch Crockpot Casserole
adapted from Albert Heijn's ovenschotel met gehaktballetjes en winterpeen
• 2 Tablespoons olive oil
• 2 onions, chopped
• 1 pound ground beef (or turkey)
• 1 Tablespoon garlic,minced
• 2 teaspoons thyme
• 2 Tablespoons katjap manis (also known as kecap manis)*
• 1.5 pounds carrots, sliced
• 1.5 pounds potatoes, large cubes
• Pepper and salt to taste
• ¼ cup cold water or beef broth
1. Chop two onions.
2. Saute onions in olive oil for about three minutes.
3. Add ground beef and cook until browned.
4. Add one Tablespoon of ketjap manis (<--Amazon affiliate link), stir, and let simmer for two minutes.
Ketjap manis, also known as kecap manis, is a thick, sweet Indonesian soy sauce. If you can't find it, or don't want to order online, you can make your own using Kayotic Kitchen's recipe, or substitute regular soy sauce with an equal parts of brown sugar and molasses.
5. Add the ground beef and onions to the crockpot.
6. Peel and chop 1.5 pounds carrots. I like using rainbow carrots for color. You can also substitute parsnips.
7. Add sliced carrots to the crockpot.
8. Cut up 1.5 pounds potatoes in large chunks. I like red potatoes and generally keep the skin on after cutting out any eyes or brown spots.
Because I like to leave the skin on, I make sure to rinse the chopped potatoes several times to rinse off any dirt.
9. Add potatoes to crockpot.
10. Add 2 Tablespoons ketsap manis.
11. Add 1 Tablespoon minced garlic. We happen to love garlic. If you aren't crazy about garlic, 1 clove is plenty.
12. Add 2 teaspoons thyme, and salt and pepper to taste. I generally add 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
13. Add 1/4 cup water or beef broth.
14. Mix well. Cover and cook on high for 5 hours.
15. Enjoy! Or, as they say in the Netherlans, "eet smakelijk!"
Download a copy of this recipe for your own use:
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