Cooking with a crockpot is so convenient and the food is so comforting and warm. It is certainly a favorite for the fall and winter. Here are some interesting historical crockpot facts, crockpot cooking tips, and a delicious pork rib soup slow cooker recipe. This pork and kale soup is hearty and pretty healthy!
Interesting Historical Crockpot Facts
The idea of the crockpot was initially invented by Irving Naxon, who coined it the “Naxon Beanery All-purpose Cooker”. The invention was inspired by Naxon’s Jewish grandmother, who was unable to work in the kitchen during the Sabbath. She ensured a warm meal Saturday night by dropping off her stew at the bakery Friday night. The bakery’s oven wasn’t used during Sabbath, but it was still warm enough to keep the stew hot. In 1971, Nixon sold his business to Rival Manufacturing, who began selling the appliance under the Crock-Pot brand name.
Slow cookers attained popularity in the US during the 1970’s, when women began to work outside their home, and still needed to cook dinner for their family. They could add everything into the pot before leaving for work, and have a fully cooked meal by the time they returned. Ever since then, slow cookers have been a staple is most US households.
The below recipe was provided by Justin D. who writes about food and health on behalf of Marie Callender’s. I would suggest substituting white beans if you don’t have chickpeas. They go great with kale.
Crockpot Pork Rib Kale Soup Recipe
So, first let’s talk abut the pork in this pork and kale soup. It uses country style pork ribs which is great because you get all the nutritional value and health benefits of cooking the bone (lots of calcium and collagen) and the great flavor from the pork fat and meat. Now, here is the funny part. Country-style pork ribs aren’t actually ribs! According to Butcherbox, “Country-style ribs don’t actually come from the rib area of a pig. Instead, they come from the shoulder area — specifically from the fatty, muscular section of the shoulder blade near the loin. When country-style ribs have a bone in them, it is not rib bone but the scapula or shoulder blade.”
Now, a word about kale. When it it fully matured and large, kale can have a rather large stem which some people refer to as the kale rib. If you are wondering how to remove the rib from kale, it is easy to just slice it off. However, that is completely unnecessary as these will be cooked down to tender in the soup.
Pork Rib Kale Soup Ingredients:
- Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
- 1/2 pound (with bone or boneless) country-style pork ribs
- 1 cup diced carrot
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 cup chopped white onion
- 1 can (15 oz each) chickpeas, drained, rinsed
- 4 cups chopped fresh kale
- 28 oz can of Petite Diced Tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (14 oz each) chicken broth
- 1 cup water
How To Make Kale And Pork Rib Soup In A Slow Cooker:
- Spray medium skillet with cooking spray. Heat over medium-high heat. Add pork; brown on all sides.
- Layer, in order, the carrot, pork, garlic, bay leaves, oregano, thyme, crushed red pepper, onion, chickpeas, kale and undrained tomatoes in slow cooker. Add chicken broth and water.
- Cover; cook on LOW 6 to 8 hours or until meat is tender. Remove country style pork ribs, shred (remove bone, if any, as well as any hunks of fat, and stir pork meat back into soup. Remove and discard bay leaves.
I hope you enjoy this tasty Crockpot Pork Rib Kale Soup.
If you have extra soup leftover, here is how to freeze soup.
5 Crockpot Cooking Tips
- Refrain from filling the crock pot over 2/3 of the way full. The food won’t cook properly.
- If the crock pot is less than 1/2 full, the ingredients will cook too fast.
- Because fat tends to cook too fast, trim as much fat as possible before putting meat into the pot.
- Do NOT lift the pot’s lid. Add another 30 minutes each time the lid is lifted.
- Because food at the bottom of the pot cooks faster, put the veggies at the bottom since they don’t cook as quickly as meat.
Printable Recipe For Pork Rib Kale Soup
You may also enjoy crockpot pork carnitas. What are your favorite things about cooking with a crockpot?