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My parents gave me a slow cooker not long after the birth of my daughter, in an effort to motivate me to cook healthy meals instead of relying on the local takeaway that delivers (I think!)
I found this book in The Works at the bargain price of £1.99. The price on the back of the book is £9.99. On the back of the book it says 'A hassle-free approach to home cooking - Get the most out of your slow cooker with these easy mouth-watering recipes-perfect for the busy cook'.
Being somewhat sceptical as I'm not a great cook at the best of times, I thought if it saved me some time in the day and meant I could dish up something edible for tea it was worth a go. The first recipe I attempted was 'Country Chicken with tarragon and cream' and it was lovely. It took about 15 mins to prepare and cooked for 2 hours. For that success alone it was worth the £1.99 cost of the book!
The book is a paperback with over 140 meal ideas. The recipes are worded simply and easy to follow. There are a few photographs in the middle of the book of the finished recipe, this encourages the reader to have a go! The book is broken down into the following sections:
- Breakfast and Brunch
- Easy Lunches
- Afterwork Suppers
- Sweet Things
- Chutneys, Jams and Drinks
Overall I would recommend this book, especially if you could buy it on offer somewhere. Great book which saves you time and enables you to produce tasty meals without slaving away in the kitchen for hours.
This is currently available from Amazon for £5.29
I was new to using a slow cooker, so I needed a book to get me started. "Slow Cooking" by Katie Bishop seemed to fit the bill but I've been rather disappointed with it.
The book has a lot of variety - to be honest, that's part of the problem. For me the main advantage of a slow cooker is to be able to throw dinner in the pot, go to work or whatever all day, and come home to a yummy dinner all ready for you. I would say no more than 1 in 10 of the recipes in this book suit that plan of action. Many (even most) of the recipes only need 2 or 3 hours cooking - for some situations that might be useful but for me if it's only a couple of hours why not just use the oven?!
The book covers all meals (again, not what I was looking for - I should have done more research before I bought! Here are the chapter headings, with *approximate* number of recipes in each:
Breakfast and brunch - 20
Easy lunches - 20
Afterwork suppers - 25
Get togethers - 30
Sweet things - 20
Chutnews, jams and drinks - 25
Clearly I should have chosen a book which concentrated on "afterwork suppers". But even that chapter has several "quick" recipes which only need 4 hours cooking, and most of them say 6-8 hours. A lot of these are fine for 9 or 10 hours (a more realistic time for people working 9-5 and travelling to and fro) but there is nothing in the recipes to say which will suffer if cooked for longer and which won't.
I also found some of the recipes rather pretentious and impractical - but it has to be said I am more of an "Irish stew" kind of gal rather than a "beetroot, thyme and goat's cheese salad" lady, so perhaps I'm biased. But really, who actually makes "mussels with cream and saffron" or "mini chestnut, mushroom and red wine pies with mustard pastry"? It must be a whole different world from mine! There are a reasonable number of basics in there - from overnight porridge through to Christmas pudding, but most of them seem to gain little from the use of a slow cooker.
The other issue I had was that a significant number of the recipes require quite a lot of preparation before they go in the dish. I was hoping for more "chuck it all in" lazy recipes.
This is a reasonable book with a very wide variety of recipes. It tries to be all things to all people which is never going to be possible! Whatever you are looking for from your slow cooker you will find a few recipes that suit you - but an awful lot that don't. But if you're looking for one type of recipe in particular (as I was looking for "chuck it all in the cooker in the morning and it's ready to eat in the evening" recipes) then you probably need a more specialist book.
This book contains 140 recipes for the slow cooker and subtitles itself 'easy slow cooker recipes.
The book has a glossy front but matt finish pages which mean it can quite easily get stained and the pages can stick together if they are not dried out properly. Also, it is tricky to make it lie flat.
There is a 20 page introduction which is a pretty generic overview of slow cooking benefits and methods. However, there is a quite useful section on how to use a 'conventional recipe' in a slow cooker.
Each section has a short introduction before leading into the recipes. Each recipe details preparation time, cooking time, indicates whether it is a vegetarian meal and many have a section at the bottom which details simple alternatives/improvements to the recipe. There are no real photographs with the recipes themselves, but in a couple of places in the book there are some pages of group together photographs of recipes elsewhere in the book
The first section is called 'breakfast and brunch' and includes recipes such as: overnight porridge (very useful), spiced apple compote, spelt and apple bread, overnight yoghurt, slow roasted tomatoes on toast, homemade baked beans, omelette.
Next up is easy lunches; eg butternut and chilli soup (lovely), vegetable frittata, cauliflower and parsnip royal korma, chicken carbonara, country chicken with tarragon and cream, chorizo in sherry and tomato sauce.
The next section is on after work suppers and include recipes such as tomato pasta sauce, black bean gumbo, red lentil and tomato dhal, Moroccan chicken with preserved lemon and couscous, Mexican chicken mole with chocolate, chunky chilli, pork cassoulet, slow-cooked sausages in cider (a personal favourite)
Following this is 'get-togethers' - bouillabaisse, mini chestnut, mushroom and red wine pies with mustard pastry, herb-infused bream with caramelised onions, beef in Beaujolais, beef in beer (another favourite), slow-roasted pork belly with lentils and tarragon, baked gammon with roasted root vegetables and cider (which I am excited about trying)
Next up is 'sweet things' ie puddings and desserts eg green tea and apple compote, rose-scented rice pudding, blueberry and lime loaf cake, Baileys bread and butter pudding, slow-poached strawberries with Pimms and clotted cream (which I can't wait to try this summer), lemon upside down pudding.
The final section is on chutney, jams and drinks eg Shiraz jelly, classic marmalade with whisky, lime pickle, tomato chutney, red onion marmalade, a lengthy tomato ketchup recipe, Swedish glogg (mulled wine), hot winter pimms
Perhaps the best thing about this book is that it does take slow cooking in a slightly different direction to a lot of slow cooker books that I have used recently that is it steers readers away from the traditional recipes that are generally suggested for slow cookers - eg stews, suet puddings. Some of the recipes suggested are certainly a lot more adventurous that many that I have seen and have really opened me up to the sheer variety of recipes that I could end up using.
The recipes themselves are well explained and the ones which I have tried have worked really well and been really tasty. There are also a good range of recipes that can be used throughout the year and some which are surprisingly impressive when cooking for guests. I am particularly looking forward to doing some of the jams and chutneys as they look relatively simple and do not always require tons and tons of ingredients.
In conclusion, I think that this is a really good addition to any slow cooker recipe book collection for anybody who wants to try some more unusual and interesting dishes with their machine.
When I was a kid My Mum had a low-cooker which she called a "crockpot", I remember her making stews and soups in itand that was about all it was used for.
I recently picked up a second hand slow cooker for a couple of quid to add to my ever growing range of kitchen appliances. I must admit but I wasn't sure what to make in it at first so I just did a chilli.
I saw this book at my local library and thought I would try it out. The first recipe I made from this book was the meatballs which turned out ok but I had left the cooker on high too long so they dried out a bit. I have also tried the Italian Herby Peppers too which I thought were better than being cooked in a conventiional oven because they were very tender and flavoursome.
This book offers a wide range of recipes from a simple porridge to cooking joints of meat. The amount of preparation time needed depends on the recipe, but once you have done your prepation you just switch the cooker to the desired setting and leave it to cook.
I think this book will help people to get more out of their slow-cookers and make more adventurous meals.
At first I've always been wary of slow-cooking - but having now lived on my own for the past year or so it is a life-saver! I can't live without my slow-cooker and its great to come home in the evening to a home made cooked meal. I cook in the morning, then pop it in the slow cooker so its ready warm for me when I comei n from work at 10pm ish - sometimes much later. I am always trying to strive to eat healthier - easier said than done! This cook book is great - full of easy reciepes to follow and mouth watering photos!! real inspiration. I would def recommend this book to anyone who wants to cook a healthy warm meal - especailly at this time of the year when its cold, miserable. great for single people like me but also for families. Wouldn't be without it!
I often go through phases of using the slow cooker, and after my last 'phase', I decided I wanted to be a bit more adventerous than my normal sausage casserole, or chicken stew I had been doing. I had been on the lookout for a slow cooking bookl, for simple yet different recipes. One of my bug bears about cooking books in general is that they normally alkways require ingriedients that you dont have in the store cupboard, and normally involve things you never normally buy, or often weird things that you cant even buy in the supermarket! So I was very pleased when I came across this book, and its simple but different ideas for the slow cooker. Its much more adventerous than I would ever come up with, and the book is full of sensible yet delicious recipes. You do get the feeling that this book is full of tasty treats, as opposed to just thinking of random combinations to fill the book. I never knew you could do so much with a slow cooker! The book itself doesnt have many poictures, so you dont know what the recipes should look like when they are finished with, but I dont find that to be a problem. The paper quality isnt the best for being in the kitchen, so if you do spill, it wont wipe off easily as the pages arent glossy. Apart from that, this is a really useful addition to my collection, and has and will give me plenty more use out of the slow cooker this winter.
I got this book a couple of months ago and I have found it very useful, I have owned a slow cooker for a couple of years now but have always been limited to the basic casserole or joint of meat of some kind, I wanted to try and use the appliance to its full potential, Im glad I chose this book, it is easy to follow and lots of recipies for all abilities and occasions. not every recipie had a picture to accompany it but I dont feel this is always needed and it means theres more space for delicious recipies. I have already enjoyed making lots of the recipies in the book, they are simple to follow and you are almost guaranteed a delicious meal that hasnt taken all that much work, I love that I can get home from work to a meal pretty much ready to serve.
I'm a big fan of the Slow Cooker but find the recipe books that come with are usually a bit basic and am always looking out for new ideas. I found this book in my local library and checked it out. I was glad I borrowed it before I bought it. Really very basic receipes, not many good pictures and no really original recipes in it. I did try a couple of them, which were fine and were easy to follow, but there was really nothing there that I hadnt tried before. If you are looking for a good book to inspire you with your slow cooking then I would say that there are many on the market that are much better than this. If you do fancy it, try borrowing it from the library, or see if you can find it on ebay first, save yourself some money, or google slow cooking, you will find recipes there.
The book will definitely surprise anybody that is new at 'slow cooking' I was given my new slow cooker as a present so went searching for this book online, and decided to buy for a bargain £5.
I was quite disappointed when I received the book as it is not filled with pictures - how I like my cookery books -however I decided to persevere.
Firstly i started off traditional and went for the home made stews, this was very simple and easy and tasted delicious, especially once left many hours for all the flavours to combine.
I was glad to find that although a distinct lake of picture it was well laid out and gave all the measurements timings and quantity a cook could need.
A must for any beginner - from stews and casseroles, to slow cooked breakfast. A lot of variation for every cook.
Now I have a few of my favourite recipes in the book mastered I will be buying a new book
I use my slow cooker quite a lot , I find it useful on busy days stick everything in at breakfast time then when you get home its all cooked and ready to eat . However all I seem to make is stews and casseroles and the odd rice pudding , so looking for inspiration I bought this book.
Slow cooking - Easy Slow Cooker Recipes by Katie Bishop.
I had been looking for a slow cooker book that wasnt american so this one seemed the perfect choice.
The book starts off with an introduction to slow cooking and advising you of the best types of ingredients to use and general cooking times.
Then on to the recipes , divided into sections of Breakfast and Brunch , Easy Lunch , Afterwork Suppers , Get togethers , Sweet Things and ending with Chutneys and Jams .
Just from the index i was pleased with this book ...I never knew you could make breakfast in the slow cooker !
The recipes are easily layed out with the preparation , cooking time and how many it serves at the top , I find this very useful as I have often come to cook something then realised I should have started it an hour or so before .
At the end of most recipes it has a try or what about section with suggestions for variations and cooking times for ovens .
There are only a few pictures in the book which is a bit of a shame but the pictures they have included are good and on gloss paper in the middle of the book.
Some inspiring recipes in this book you may never have thought of for the slow cooker include : Breakfast omelette, Sea Bass with tamarind and ginger ,Sticky orange and seasame chicken drumsticks and a range of cakes (mostly using the slow cooker as a bain-marie ).
Of course there are more recipes that you would think sound more suitable for slow cookers such as : 24 hour persian lamb , seafood chowder , Irish stew and many more
The book is easy to follow and with 140 recipes you will be amazed as to what you can actually do with your slow cooker.
I purchased the paperback version of the book from Amazon for £4.99 and has been worth every penny.