website, where I learned to make a mean pork carnitas, she's published several cookbooks that help hesitant cooks like myself get over the idea that there are only a few types of foods that can be prepared in a slow cooker.
Her new cookbook, 365 Slow Cooker Suppers, shows that the possibilities for slow-cooker use are much less limited than most of us think. I marked many recipes I'd like to try, and even made one of them immediately: corn chowder. That's something I really enjoy and something I'd never considered cooking in a slow cooker.
If you read through many of the recipes, you'll discover that there are several variations on a base recipe--just with a different set of seasonings or group of vegetables. Once I noticed that, I felt more confident about fiddling with a recipe on my own to adjust it to my family's tastes--again, something I'll do with a stove-top recipe without thinking twice about it.
One thing I like about O'Dea's cookbooks is the "Verdict" at the bottom of each recipe. In that short paragraph, she explains how the recipe can be varied to suit
I felt that there was a lot of emphasis on gluten-free this or that. While I don't mean to slight anyone who must follow a gluten-free diet due to medical necessity, I think there are less-intrusive ways to indicate this in a cookbook. There were recipes that contained the parenthetical "(I use gluten-free insert name of ingredient)" several times. After a while, I started to feel that because I don't have gluten intolerance, I'm not the target market for this cookbook. I doubt that this is what the author intended. I'd suggest, instead, listing gluten-free substitutions at the bottom of a recipe or denoting gluten-free ingredients with a GF icon next to the name of the ingredient. Because most of these recipes don't include a long list of steps to be followed in preparation, there's plenty of room on the page to find another way to indicate when gluten-free ingredients can be used.
The fine print: I was provided with an electronic copy of this cookbook for the purposes of this review. All opinions are mine alone, and I was given no other compensation for my review.