I named my first Crock Pot, a Rival 3-1/2 quart, after America's beloved stay-at-home mom June Cleaver. June was played by the lovely Barbara Billingsley in the 50-60's TV show "Leave It To Beaver", who herself passed away on October 16, 2010. My reasoning was that she stayed home and cooked all day while I was at work.
Last night Drew and I discovered that June Cleaver Crock Pot was dying. She was trying to cook a full fresh chicken and it was taking a lot longer than normal. So long that by 8 pm we made the decision to send Drew out for fast food rather than wait any longer. (This decision was also supplemented by the fact that Drew & his brother had worked on our torn up bathrooms all day long and Drew was exhausted. I don't normally argue with Drew's decisions when he's tired, hungry and cranky.)
At 10:30 pm I checked on June and the chicken was perfectly done as we like it. Moist, juicy and falling off the bone! But it had taken four hours longer than it should have. And for the last three hours of it I turned it on High. Normally when I do that it's only a matter of minutes before she's bubbling away like a chicken broth fueled volcano! Last night she barely burbled at me.
I have certain inanimate objects that I've become irrationally attached to. My computer and Crock Pots fall into that category. The day I had to dispose of the first PC tower I had ever owned I cried like a baby. It was a milky white Gateway tower that had been with me for a long, long time. The insides were all different, having been upgraded over the years, but the tower was always the same. When I got a new PC, it had to go.
So it's with a heavy heart that I too have to say goodbye to June Cleaver Crock Pot. She taught me the joy of slow cooking, which isn't really like cooking at all. You throw a bunch of stuff into a ceramic tub, turn it on, go away, come back in 6-8 hours and wala! A meal that is awesome! Crock Pots can turn someone who normally can't fry an egg without setting the smoke detector off into a culinary goddess!
I will have to get a new 3-1/2 quart Crock Pot. Preferably a Rival because they have worked so well for me and I do show brand loyalty to products that provide years of service. Meanwhile, my 6-1/2 quart Crock Pot named Alice (you can guess what show I named her from --- and if you can't --- "Brady Bunch"!) will be in charge of doing the majority of the cooking. You may ask, "If you have another Crock Pot, why do you need a new one?" Because you aren't supposed to cook anything smaller than 1/2 the size of the Crock Pot in the 6-1/2 quart one, and one of our favorite recipes is Slow Cooker Ranch Pork Chop, which is very tiny.
The late June Cleaver and Alice
Goodbye June and thank you for making me look like a helluva better cook than I really am. Now if you'll excuse me, I have something in my eye.