I love my slow cooker. It sits in a place of prominence on my kitchen counter. I don’t use it every day, sometimes only a few times a month, but I can safely say it’s one of the few kitchen appliances I wouldn’t want to be without.
Kind of funny, really, because up until 10 years ago, I’d never used a slow cooker before and wasn’t familiar with coordinating meals first thing in the morning that cooked all day. Then, one of my busy friends with four kids showed me her crock pot. She’d bought it on a recommendation of a friend. “It’s so easy,” she said, “and the recipes taste great.” It was ideal for her, because she could set it up before she went to work and when she got home, dinner would be ready. She could save money by using cheaper cuts of meat, too, that would become tender through the cooking process.
So, 10 years ago, during a trip to Costco, I bought my Rival Crock Pot (I still have the same one). I was busy writing passionate, adventurous medieval romances, hoping to sell my first novel, eager to find ways to squeeze a few more minutes out of my day that I could spend with my roguish heroes and willful heroines, or with my young daughter and husband.
The crock pot filled my needs perfectly. I’ve made stews, pot roasts, chili, spaghetti sauce (heavenly!), even a Sticky Toffee Pudding (My British husband was thrilled). I’ve only dipped my finger, really, into all the yummy prospects this nifty appliance can provide. One of my goals this year is to try recipes I’ve never made before and add to my collection of favorite slow cooker recipes. There are some great ones at Food Network (http://www.foodnetwork.com/topics/slow-cooker/index.html) and Epicurious (http://www.epicurious.com/tools/searchresults?search=slow+cooker&x=0&y=0).
My crock pot is still my go-to gadget if I have a busy week along with late-afternoon appointments. There’s nothing more rewarding than stepping into the house after a long day to the delicious aroma of a healthy, ready-made meal. To my trusted slow cooker, I say “thanks.”
What’s your favorite slow cooker recipe? Please share it in the comments section. Everyone who shares a recipe will be eligible to win a copy of A Knight’s Vengeance, Book One of my Knight’s Series—either a paperback (now out of print) or a Kindle version. Winner’s choice!