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Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Family Favorites

Food doesn’t have to be fancy to be good. It doesn’t need to impress when you are talking about home cooking, but to be just tasty and nourish the body and soul with warm, inviting, informal flavor. Every family has their weekly dinner standards: spaghetti and meatballs, lasagna, meatloaf, chicken, beef stew. While the NYMSC books have been called new recipes designed for the more sophisticated cook, this volume of family favorites heads back to our American cooking roots with homey soups and one pot meals, with a few imaginative twists on familiar recipes I cant resist including. In collaboration with my sister, Meg, I was able to pull together a collection of recipes that are simple to prepare, focusing on sensible flavor combinations and the freshest ingredients you can find.

 
  Norman Rockwell says it all about family favorites and the communal dinner table  
In a nutshell, traditional American home cooking. Wholesome food that is modern but not fussy, fitting in with a family-friendly healthy food lifestyle.

After finishing the NYMSC for Two in the small cookers, the natural next step was going to the larger cookers, 5-,6-, and 7-quart, to cooking for a group. And I am very pleased with what came to be our newest addition to the NYMSC series. Simplicity is the hardest thing to reproduce in the kitchen and yet it is the main ingredient in preparing comfort food and old favorites that smack of homemade goodness.

Home cooking is synonymous with health and well being--caring for people. Working full time and having children keeps most moms and dads being creative looking for recipes that will please all members of the family. The slow cooker machine is one of the easiest countertop appliances and there is a simplicity to its cooking method that appeals to every level cook.

There are always recipes your family looks forward to being served. But how to keep those old standbys fresh and enticing? When time is in short order and every minute counts, it is great to have some tried and true recipes on hand. Eating at home can be healthier than eating out, more creative for you develop your own style, and there is a small triumph to be able to prepare meals that kids and picky eaters will really eat. Think simple, yet satisfying; creative and tasty.
  Meg's favorite All Clad stovetop savvy 6.5 quart slow cooker from Williams Sonoma  
 
But the challenge to beat all is to come up with something new and delicious every single night for a family. And family means children, of all ages, lots of responsibilities, school, yoga classes, Little League, a spouse, and often working full or part-time. From Mexican to Chinese, Morrocan to vegetarian, there's a an ethnic-inspired or classic favorite crock pot meal out there for even the most picky or easy-to-please eater. Creating a variety of interesting meals has never been easier. Whether you're a working mother, a bachelor, a single parent, cooking in your dorm room looking for that taste of home, or simply too busy to spend your time cooking, the slow cooker is the convenience appliance that is affordable, easy to use, and practical since it utilizes a minimum of technique.

Something essential to keep in mind is that the only “right” way to cook is the way that produces the greatest joy for you. NYMSC Family Favorites stresses the enjoyment of the variety of foods available in regular supermarkets, butcher shop, farmer’s market today. You will find here not only pot roasts, poultry and chili recipes, which the slow cooker is famous for, but casseroles, vegetables stews, soups, sandwich fixings, main dish salads, and a bevy of fine sauces for pasta – all designed with your comfort and an ease of preparation in mind.

 
  Family Christmas 1979 - Everyday life becomes memories.  
While this is not a large book, it is really comprehensive and we ended up loving the recipes. You will find chapters on:
  • Hot Drinks (like buttered mulled apple juice and a fabulous fresh gingerale)

  • Fun Appetizers (like slow-steamed artichokes with red pepper aioli, a favorite, and butterbean hummus)

  • Breakfasts (like breakfast couscous with dates & nuts and yummy tortilla egg casserole)

  • Salads (like thai beef and pasta salad and curried chicken salad with raisins & apples in pitas)

  • Sandwiches (like french dip sandwiches with crock- sauteed green peppers and mini turkey meatball sliders)

  • Soups (like creamy tomato basil soup and vegetable lentil soup with cumin, coriander, & lemon)

  • Roasted Meats (like old fashioned meatloaf with fresh tomatoes & two cheeses, pork roast with sweet potatoes, and garlic-rosemary leg of lamb with a yummy tabbouleh mint salad)

  • Roasted Poultry (like thai-style ginger chicken thighs and whole chicken stuffed with rice and golden raisins)

  • Stews and Chilis (like a mixed vegetable stew with almonds & currants and meg’s chianti & cherry beef stew—don’t miss one of the most popular recipes, the Big Sky Bison Chili)

  • Casseroles & Vegetable Sides (like spinach & cheese soufflé and green enchilada casserole)
Big Sky Bison Chili
Smoky Hand-Pulled Pork on a Bun with Cabbage-Carrot Slaw
 
 
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