Tuesday, February 19, 2019

The Crock-Pot Ladies Big Book of Slow Cooker Dinners

The Crock-Pot Ladies Big Book of Slow Cooker Dinners is a new recipe collection from cooking/lifestyle blog team at CrockPotLadies. Released 15th Jan 2019 by Quarto on their Harvard Common Press imprint, it's 328 pages, and available in ebook and paperback formats.

My family is fairly typical of a lot of families with older teen/twenties kids living at home, two parents working full time and very little time left over for long and involved meal prep.  My slow cooker and instant-pot have become some of my best friends in the kitchen.  It's really tempting to pick up the same things at the grocery store and prepare the same dinners week in and week out.  I'm seriously not exaggerating when I say that this book has challenged my family to change up our dinners and get away from the same old things.

There are some really delightful regional dishes represented here. There are the staple southwestern USA dishes (the chicken enchilada soup - p.66 is delicious and we've made it a dozen times in the last few months), lots of Italian American fusion dishes, minestrone, tomato soup with gnocchi, and others, as well as a welcome handful of Asian inspired dishes also with an American flair. I haven't seen many seafood based slow cooker recipes, and this cookbook has them. The lobster bisque (p.50) is -gorgeous-.

The ingredients are slanted toward North American readers; sourcing some of them might be challenging other places in the world.  I live in Northern Europe and didn't have trouble finding the ingredients for the recipes we tested, so it's not likely to be an impossible hurdle in other parts of the world.  Recipes are given in imperial measurements with metric equivalents in parentheses, so the reader is spared from having to convert.

Just a fun and delicious comprehensive slow cooker cookbook. There are lots of selections which are not soups or stews, which is great.  This collection shows the versatility of slow cookers. The recipes are sensible and the entire aesthetic of the book is family friendly and wholesome. Is there anything in here that's going to make cordon bleu chefs swoon? No. Are these family friendly and appetizing meals with easily sourced ingredients which even your picky ten year old will eat without drama? Yes.

Five stars.  Definitely worthwhile. Of the recipes we've tried, there hasn't been a single clunker.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes

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