Like most people, I use my slow cooker for main courses: chili, beef stew, shredded beef or chicken. But the counter cooker can be a help for other dishes, too.
Think about foods that benefit from long unattended cooking, like dried or fresh fruit compotes or crisps. It’s generally too much work for me to throw together desserts on a weeknight. But if I have it ready to go when I get home from work, then just plug it in, we can have a warm wonderful dessert after supper — a particularly nice thing on these cold dark nights.
Below is a favorite recipe for peach crisp. The secret ingredient is graham crackers for the topping. They stay crunchier than traditional flour-based toppings and add an almost-summer like flavor to the peaches.
SLOW COOKER PEACH CRISP WITH GRAHAM TOPPING
Makes 4 to 6 servings
You can easily replace the frozen peaches with fresh apples or pears or frozen berries. When in season, you can easily use fresh fruit.
1 package (20 ounces) frozen sliced peaches
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
11/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup ground graham cracker crumbs
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
4 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into cubes
Vanilla ice cream for serving (optional)
Combine fruit, sugar, lemon juice, cornstarch and cinnamon in the crock of a slow cooker. (Can be prepared to this point up to 8 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)
Combine graham cracker crumbs, ginger and butter in a food processor. Process until moist crumbs form. Sprinkle over fruit topping.
Cook crisp on low for 3 to 4 hours or on high for 2. Serve warm with scoops of ice cream, if desired.