When it comes to kitchen appliances, things have changed remarkably since 1978, when (my then) husband and I received a bright orange Monier Crock Pot as a wedding gift! Sadly, I left the item behind somewhere or other during a move, but I do still have the little recipe book that came with it and I remember that Beef Burgundy was a favourite. I also used it on many occasions to melt chocolate to make chocolate-dipped strawberries.
In today's slow cookers, you can bake breads and cakes, cook soups and roasts, braise casseroles and even make desserts al la my South Australian friend and fellow cook and writer, Amanda from Lamb's Ears and Honey, who poached quinces to ruby perfection in her slow cooker recently.
Australia's best loved cookery writer, teacher and commentator, Margaret Fulton OAM, wrote a Crock Pot Cookbook in 1976 and has revisited and updated this theme in her latest publication, Slow Cooking. The book arrived coincidentally with the first frost of the season, perfect timing for traditional cool weather dishes, such as Osso Bucco, Veal and Broad Bean Casserole, and Coq au Vin. Margaret also explores a broad collection of recipes for stocks and soups; beef and lamb (including a lamb, olive and lemon tagine); minced meats (including stuffed capsicum), chicken, pork and veal (including a terrine), fish, hearty roasts and pot roasts, vegetables and side dishes (including dhal), and some lovely desserts, jams and chutneys.
Margaret proves that the slow cooker, which she says is the 'modern version of the old clay pot, which used to sit on the side of the stove with the evening meal gently simmering, is wonderfully versatile'. Just set and forget for food cooked to perfection. I must say, I was amazed by the range and versatility of dishes that can be prepared in a slow cooker and can definitely recommend this book for everyone who has a slow cooker and anyone who is thinking of adding one to their kitchen.
Slow Cooking by Margaret Fulton (New Holland) $35.00. With sincere thanks to Margaret Fulton and New Holland Publishing for giving me the opportunity to review and road test this title.
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