Slow cooking is the culinary secret weapon that allows us to take a deep breath and savour some moments of peace and respite before the whirlwind of the holiday season begins. As the days grow shorter and the air turns crisper, there's something truly magical about coming home to the comforting aroma of a slow-cooked meal filling the air.
As the holiday season comes around, slow cooking offers a precious gift—time. It's a gentle reminder that amidst the hustle and bustle of gift shopping, decorating, and party planning, we can still carve out moments to relax and unwind. With just a few simple preparations in the morning, a slow cooker can work its magic throughout the day, turning budget-friendly ingredients into a hearty, nourishing feast.
So, as the holiday season fast approaches, consider dusting off your slow cooker and letting it work its magic!
Slow Cooker Eggplant Parmigiana 
- 2 (about 280g each) small eggplants
- 2 tsp salt
- 60ml (1 ⁄4 cup) vegetable stock
- 400g bottle Napoletana pasta sauce
- 2 tbsp Borges Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 40g (2⁄3 cup) panko breadcrumbs
- 40g (1/2 cup) finely grated parmesan
- 250g piece mozzarella, cut into eight 5mm thick slices
- Fresh basil leaves, to serve
- Slice the eggplant in half lengthways. Use a small sharp knife to score the flesh crossways, about 1.5cm apart. Sprinkle the cut sides with salt. Set aside for 20 minutes. Rinse off salt and gently squeeze dry.
- Combine the stock and 185ml (3/4 cup) pasta sauce in a jug. Pour into a 5L (20 cup) slow cooker and evenly spread over the base. Arrange the eggplant halves, cut-side up, on top of the sauce. Spread the remaining pasta sauce onto each eggplant. Cover and cook on High for 2 1/2 hours.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic. Cook for 30 seconds or until aromatic. Add the panko. Cook, stirring, for 4 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside for 10 minutes to cool slightly. Add the parmesan and toss to combine.
- Arrange 2 slices mozzarella onto each eggplant. Fold a clean tea towel in half and place over the slow cooker. Cover and cook on High for 10 minutes or until cheese has melted.
- Use a large, flat spoon to carefully transfer the eggplant to serving plates. Drizzle sauce around eggplant and spoon panko mixture on top. Scatter over basil leaves to serve.
Beef Stroganoff 
- 2 1/4 pound beef chuck roast
- 6 shallots, peeled and chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 4 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 pounds button mushrooms, quartered
- 1 1/2 cups sour cream
- 1/2 – 1 cup cognac
- 2 tbsp beef base, + 2 teaspoons (or 5 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon beef concentrate)
- 2 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 3 cups water
- 12 oz Borges Fusilli Pasta
- salt and pepper to taste
- Set a large 6-quart slow cooker to low heat. Cut the beef roast into small bite-size chunks, or cut against the grain into thin strips.
- Place the butter in a large skillet and set on the stovetop over medium heat. Once melted, add the onions and garlic. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, then add the beef pieces. Brown the beef on all sides, about 5 minutes. Then sprinkle the flour over the beef and stir to coat. Cook another 3 minutes. Pour the mixture in the bottom of the slow cooker. *If using an Instant Pot or Multi-Cooker, do this in the crock on the Sauté setting, then lower the heat to Slow Cook.
- Add the chopped mushrooms to the crock. In a bowl, whisk the sour cream, cognac, beef base, Dijon mustard, and thyme together. Pour the mixture over the mushrooms, then add in 3 cups water. *If using less than 1 cup cognac, add extra water to equal 1 cup.
- Cover the crock and slow cook for 5-6 hours on high, or 7-9 hours on low, until the beef is fork-tender. Stir in the egg noodles. Cover again and slow cook another 20-30 minutes, until the pasta is cooked to al dente. Taste, then salt and pepper as needed.
Chicken Tikka Masala 
- 2 pounds chicken breasts skinless, boneless
- 2½ tsp salt
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 3 tbsp plain yogurt
- 1 tbsp kashmiri red chili powder
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- 1½ tsp garam masala
- 1 tbsp ginger, grated
- 1 tbsp garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp Borges Classic Olive Oil
- 2 medium yellow onions, finely diced
- 1½ cups tomato puree
- ½ to ¾ cup heavy cream
- 1 to 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp dried fenugreek leaves kasoori methi
- ½ cup cilantro chopped
- Cut the chicken breasts into 2 to 3-inch cubes. Add 2 teaspoon salt and lemon juice and mix well. Add yogurt, red chili powder, turmeric, garam masala, ginger, and garlic. Mix well and allow to marinate while you prep the remaining ingredients.
- Heat oil in a medium pan. Add onions and ½ teaspoon of salt. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes stirring frequently until the onions start to soften and turn translucent. Note: If you are using Instant Pot as a slow cooker, you can saute in the instant pot itself.
- Add the cooked onions to the crockpot / slow cooker and spread it evenly. Evenly layer tomato puree over the onions. Line the marinated chicken over the tomato puree. Place the crockpot lid and set the cooking time to Slow Cook (Hi) and adjust the cooking time to 4 hours.
- After 4 hours, your kitchen will be filled with the beautiful aromas of the curry. Add heavy cream, crush the fenugreek leaves on the palm of your hands and add to the curry. Mix well, taste, and add tomato paste. Mix well and more cream if needed. Note: Optionally you can add 1 teaspoon of sugar to balance all the flavors. Garnish with cilantro and enjoy with basmati rice and naan.
Chicken Noodle Soup 
- 1 ½ lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
- 2 stalks celery, sliced
- 4 tsp sprigs fresh thyme
- 4 tsp sprigs fresh rosemary
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bay leaf
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 10 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 8 oz Borges Fusilli Pasta
- In a slow cooker, combine chicken, onion, carrots, celery, thyme, rosemary, garlic, and bay leaf and season generously with salt and pepper. Pour in broth.
- Cover and cook on low, 6 to 8 hours. Remove chicken from slow cooker and shred with two forks. Discard herbs and bay leaf. Return chicken to slow cooker and add egg noodles.
- Cook on low, covered, until al dente, 20 to 30 minutes.