Jennyema, I used a nice piece of chuck and it wasn't too lean. I'm sure it would have been fine cooking in a more traditional way.
Cheryl J, I think you're right about modern crock pots cooking at too high a temperature. This is why I'm searching for a solution. I'm leaning towards timing.
Harry, I've done a corned beef with fix'in in the crock pot before and it came out fine.
This time the recipe called for no liquid and it was shoe leather. Maybe having the meat sit atop the veggies was the problem?
Addie, I though low and slow would work too but in this case it didn't. And this isn't the first time.
Mad Cook, I think you're right about the time thing. I read somewhere that cooking meat there is a point where it pushes liquid out and won't re-
adsorb it. Guess I need to read some more.
Cave, I've had success with chili, soups and beans but I'm looking for a set it and forget it recipe. I don't think a baked potato in a crock pot would be to my liking because I just love a crisp skin.
Andy, Your use of the crock-pot as a warmer just might be it's best use.
Roll-Bones, I browned the chuck as per the recipe. But so far I agree that the traditional ways product the best results. I'm just looking for the lazy mans way for a nice dinner.
Thanks to all for your comments and suggestions. I'll continue to experiment with the crock-pot trying to come up with an acceptable meal that I can make before I leave and is ready when I get home.
So far chili and soup seem to be the leaders. I guess I was hoping for more then the device can produce.
Just goes to show that the old ways are sometimes the best ways.