Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker by Beth Hensperger and Julie Kaufmann takes a new look at cooking with the Crockpot. It offers over 350 recipes using fresh, wholesome ingredients, and modern flavors to demonstrate how invaluable the slow cooker is as a tool for entertaining. The recipes are all designed to serve anywhere from 6-20 people and focus on various entertaining styles.
Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker starts with an introductory chapter about the slow cooker and it's many sizes, shapes and uses. It's then broken down into categories; punches, sauces, vegetables, poultry and fruit desserts to name a few.
With so many classic and innovative recipes it was hard to choose which to make. After much deliberation I finally decided on the Split Pea Soup with Ham. This is something I've made in the past but never in a slow cooker. The results were perfect.
The Hamilton Beach programmable slow cooker turned making this soup into a breeze. Offering three cooking modes; program, probe and manual, this slow cooker allows you to "set it & forget it" by automatically shifting to a warm mode when the cooking time is up.
The Hamilton Beach is also perfect for entertaining both at home or away. The probe option makes it ideal for cooking large cuts of meats for parties; and the clip locked secure lid has such a tight seal there is never a need to worry about spills when traveling/transporting.
The Virtual Potluck Group has teamed up with Hamilton Beach to offer 8 readers (one from each of our blogs) a chance to win a slow cooker and cookbook of their very own. Enter below and be sure to check all of the VP blogger pages for additional ways to enter.
Split Pea Soup with Ham
Serves 8 to 12
Cooker: Large round or oval
Setting and Cook time: LOW for 13 to 15 hours;
meat shredded and bay leaves, thyme, salt, and pepper added at 12 hours
3 cups dried green split peas, rinsed and picked over
10 cups water or chicken broth
1 ham bone or 2 meaty ham hocks, rinsed
2 medium-size yellow onions, diced
3 large carrots, diced
2 ribs celery with leaves, diced
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme or 1 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Place the split peas in the slow cooker along with the water, ham bone, onions, carrots, and celery. Stir to combine. Cover and cook on LOW until the peas are completely tender, about 12 hours.
2. Skim off any scum that comes to the top. Remove the ham bone, let it cool a bit, then strip off the meat. Discard all fat and bone. Shred the meat and return it to the soup. Add the bay leaves and thyme and season with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer on LOW 1 to 3 hours longer.
3. Puree the soup in the cooker using an immersion blender, or in batches using a blender or food processor. Add more salt and pepper if necessary. Serve hot.
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