So you're on a low carb diet, looking good and feeling great, but your family is definitely on a high carb diet and getting tired of the plain meat dishes you've been serving up lately. Or maybe you are the one who's tired of them. You would like to be able to expand your low carb recipe list, but you don't have a lot of time to spend on the fancy schmancy rigamarole that some low carb cookbooks require. If only you could have your fine palate and your waistline both satisfied...
Say no more my meat-eatin' bretheren! The Everyday Low Carb Slow Cooker Cookbook was literally the answer to my prayers some months ago. As a mom of two small boys and wife to a very picky man I was having a hard time keeping everybody happy at the dinner table while I watched my weight; the "two-entrée meal" was becoming the norm and it took way too much time. In my high carb days I had used my blessed time saver, the crock pot, regularly but recently it was gathering dust on the top shelf. Thank the Lord I can put it to work again and regain my time/sanity.
Now I have to try a minimum of six recipes before I feel that I can review a cookbook with fairness. The recipes that I have completed from TELCSCC are:
Seafood Crustless Quiche (I didn't miss the crust and neither did they - Fabulous!)
Sausage and White Bean Soup (my dh literally told me it was the best soup ever, bar none)
Chicken with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Artichokes (rich and hearty, a complete meal)
Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic (yes, really!)
Pesto Beef with Grape Tomatoes and Fresh Mozzarella
I think the genius of this cookbook is that the authors recognize that low carb dieters are not only just as busy as everybody else, but also come in a variety of skill levels in the kitchen. Accordingly, there is a special section at the beginning just for the quick'n'easy crowd that features fewer ingredients and timesavers like canned food and packaged mixes to add to your fresh meats and veggies. Believe it or not, the Pesto Beef recipe was one of these! Not that the more "complicated" recipes are that much longer or harder, believe me: the authors make it clear that since slow cookery is all about convenience, their mission is to keep it as simple as possible without sacrificing taste. It would appear that their mission was successful.
In many cases these recipes are so loaded with veggies and hearty broth that you won't need to make a salad or a side dish and nobody will even notice. There are so many more that I haven't gotten to yet, but I'm dying to try the desserts next; Peanut Butter Fudge Cake with Peanut Butter Fudge Drizzle, Coconut Custard, and Pumpkin Pudding, which is promised to be like the pie without the crust. Judging by my success with the quiche, the slow cooker is a natural with those eggy custards and puddings (averaging about 3-4 hours on low).
I would compare this cookbook to Mable Hoffman's Crockery Cookery (the high-carb "bible" for slow cookers) in terms of quality & variety of recipes and simplicity of use. My family has had no complaints since I've started using it, in fact they like TELCSCC dishes better than many of my higher carb dishes. I believe that this is truly the answer for the lifestyles and tastes of a modern health-conscious Americans.
-Andrea, aka Merribelle