Kitchen

Slow Cooker Pizza Casserole

Written by CommonGround

Winter can be a hard time for a rancher. With polar blasts ranging to 70 degree days this winter, it is really hard on the livestock. But when a snowstorm is bound to it, ranchers know how to prepare so the cows are ready for it.

rancher (2)

5 ways ranchers prepare for a snowstorm:

1. Cattle are in protected areas. We rotate our cattle in a holistic, rotational pattern moving them paddock to paddock (paddock = fenced-off pastures), but in the winter, part of that rotation puts our cattle in paddocks that are more weather-protected by hills, bluffs, trees and windbreaks.

rancher 3

  1. Access. What is important about the paddocks that the cattle are in is the road access. We need to get to our cattle to feed them during/after the storm, so a good road near the pasture is key.

rancher 4

  1. Have plenty of feed ready.We don’t put out hay in the pasture before the snowstorm because it would just get snowed on. However, it is ready and near the cattle after the snow has fallen to feed the cattle. These bulls and calves are in a pen near the barn, so they have access to the hay feeder and the grain feeder to stay warm and full.

rancher 5

rancher(2) (1)

  1. Enough water. Even when it is not snowing, but is cold during the winter, we watch the water tanks carefully to make sure they don’t get iced up.

rancher 6

  1. Bedding. Some cattle that are in pens during a snowstorm get bedding. Especially this lady because she is going to calve any day. It will probably happen right during the snow (hopefully not!).

rancher 9

Even though the snow gives ranchers more chores, we sure do hope for more moisture.

rancher 8

This recipe is a great one to put in the slow cooker while we are out working on the ranch so the cowboys can have a great, warm meal when they come back in for lunch.

commonground_pizzacasserole_slowcooker (2)

{Slow Cooker Pizza Casserole}

1 Box (16 oz) Spiral Pasta (uncooked but rinsed)

1 pound lean ground beef, turkey or chicken

1 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 cup sliced pepperoni

32 ounces pasta sauce

1 cup water

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese


Ingredients

1. Spray a Large Crockpot (6qt or larger) with non-stick spray

2. In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, brown the ground beef or chicken or turkey with the onion, garlic, pepperoni and green bell pepper. Drain any excess fat.

3. Rinse pasta and place in the crockpot with drained ground meat mix. Stir. Pour pasta sauce and 1 cup water over noodle mix.

4. Top with shredded mozzarella.

5. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours (do not lift the lid).

CommonGround is a farmer-driven, volunteer program created to clear up misconceptions and enhance the trust and awareness among urban consumers for today’s agriculture. CommonGround serves as a partnership between the nation’s soybean and corn checkoffs. To learn more about CommonGround, visit www.findourcommonground.com, and learn more about the farm women involved in CommonGround Nebraska at www.CommonGroundNebraska.com.

About the author

CommonGround

CommonGround is a farmer-driven, volunteer program created to clear up misconceptions and enhance the trust and awareness among urban consumers for today’s agriculture.
CommonGround serves as a partnership between the nation’s soybean and corn checkoffs. To learn more about CommonGround, visit www.findourcommonground.com, and learn more about the farm women involved in CommonGround Nebraska at
www.CommonGroundNebraska.com.