Slow Cookers Go Way Back to Bible Days

As many of you know, Thursdays are my day to chat with Matt Swaim of the Sonrise Morning Show on Sacred Heart Radio. Today, we talked about “slow cooking” and how that kind of cooking was done during Bible days.

Slow cooking/cookers have Biblical roots! (Well, sort of)

We are all cooking more it seems and with the kids back in school, many virtually, we’re having to juggle their educational needs with our everyday household needs. And that means trying to make cooking supper easier. That’s where slow cookers/crockpots and instapots come in. 

Now back in Bible days, food was cooked in pots and sometimes whole animals were cooked on spits. The cooking pots were made of earthenware and were placed on clay stands built in a horseshoe shape, the opening being used to light the fire under the pot, or food was cooked in pots and suspended from tripods. 
Stews and soups especially took to this method, since they needed to be cooked a long time. 

I’m a slow cooking afficianado so making a stew similar to what Jacob served Esau was a given and lentils are the star here. In Genesis 25. The story goes like this: once when Jacob was cooking some stew, his twin brother Esau came in from the open country, famished. He told Jacob to give him some lentil stew Jacob was making. Jacob agreed if Esau would sell him his birthright, which Esau swore to do since Esau told him he was about to die anyway. So Esau gave up his birthright for a bowl of lentil stew! 


Detox foods into this soup (kale, onions, garlic, carrots, and olive oil – some of these are foods eaten during Bible times in the known world, like carrots, celery, onions, garlic, olive oil!). Recipe only slightly adapted from Pinch of Yum.

cook time: 6 hours



2 cups butternut squash (peeled and cubed) 2 cups carrots (peeled and sliced)
2 cups potatoes (chopped)
2 cups celery (chopped) 

1 cup green lentils
3/4 cup yellow split peas (or just use more lentils) 1 onion (chopped)
5 cloves garlic (minced)
8–10 cups vegetable or chicken broth
2 teaspoons herbs de provence or 1 teaspoon oregano dried
1 teaspoon salt (more to taste) 


2–3 cups kale (stems removed, chopped)
1 cup parsley (chopped)
1/2 cup olive oil – rosemary olive oil or other herb infused oil is delicious
a swish of sherryred wine vinegar, or lemon juice to add a nice tangy bite 


  • 1  Place all ingredients in the crockpot. Cover and cook on high for 5-6 hours or low for 7-8 hours. 
  • 2  Place about 4 cups of soup in a blender with the olive oil. Pulse gently until semi-smooth and creamy-looking (the oil will form a creamy emulsion with the soup). Add back to the pot and stir to combine. Stir in the kale and parsley. Turn the heat off and just let everything chill out for a bit before serving. The taste gets better with time and so does the texture, IMO! 
  • 3  Season to taste (add the sherry, vinegar, and/or lemon juice at this point) and to really go next level, serve with crusty wheat bread and a little Parmesan cheese. It’s called Detox Balance. 

Black Lentils  Often called beluga lentils, these are a hearty pulse that pair beautifully with other proteins or meaty vegetables. They get their nickname from their striking resemblance to beluga caviar.  

Red and Yellow Lentils You can often find these mild, sweet lentils in Indian and Middle Eastern dishes. They tend to become slightly mushy when cooked down, so this variety is often used for thickening soups, purees, and stews. Similar to red lentils, yellow lentils are used to give bright color to dishes

Brown lentils are what I grew up on – these are the ones that hold their shape fairly well, and can be used similarly to green lentils. They are commonly used in North America and have a little more mild and earthy flavor.

Green and Puy Lentils. These are more expensive usually than the other lentils. They have a bit of a pepper taste and take longer to cook. Puy lentils are harvested in the French region of Le Puy. They have the best texture and flavor of any other lentil. That’s why they are the most expensive.

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