When I was offered a look at the new cookbook, The Vegetarian Slow Cooker: Over 200 Delicious Recipes by Judith Finlayson, I was intrigued. As you may know I’ve been toying with the idea of purchasing a slow cooker. Read about my hesitations in my blog. My family is also doing Meatless Mondays and I am always looking for new vegetarian dishes. And my sister is vegan and while many of the recipes use dairy, there are some which note how to make them vegan, which I find helpful. Anyways the cookbook arrived and the recipes looked great. I wanted of course to make something, but still am not sure I want another appliance (especially to store). The great thing is, I can and have made some of these recipes without a slow cooker with great results. Of course some dishes (those with beans) need extra work (soaking) not required of the slow cooker, but it can be done. Also some of the dishes can be cooked in a braising pot for a few hours (which I already have) – but no I wouldn’t leave the house. The convenience isn’t there without the slow cooker. The author does give info about various slow cookers and use, which is helpful if I do buy.
So while I didn’t buy a slow cooker I did buy a retro 70’s fondue pot. Why? Because it is lovely and orange. Seriously my friend put a photo of this fondue pot on her blog and I immediately bought it on Etsy. Who knew Etsy had kitchenware? I’m in trouble now. I’ve had it over a month and it’s only been a display item on the open shelf in the kitchen. The slow cooker wouldn’t have such a prominent place. Not sure what I was waiting for to use it. However the perfect opportunity came with the arrival of the The Vegetarian Slow Cooker. There are some inspiring dishes that are from all kinds of food flavors and origins and then I saw the section on fondues. One in particular is a new favorite at my house… Kid’s Fondue. This is like a bowl full of rich gooey pizza. I am not kidding. So while the recipe said to cook in the slow cooker for 1 hour, I simply heated and cooked low on the stove and then poured it into my fondue pot. Super simple. My family loved it. My son was quite skeptical at first. He likes fondue and is not a huge tomato lover. When he saw it he said he wasn’t going to eat it. However after dipping a piece of baguette and red pepper he exclaimed “This is the best fondue I’ve ever had!”
And really I think the whole book is straight forward and pretty simple. It may end up putting me over the top to buy a slow cooker… But for now I’m enjoying the book without it. I think making a recipe your own is what cooking is all about, and me wanting to use the book not as intended means the book is interesting. So whether you are vegetarian or not, or have a slow cooker or not you can make this book yours too. Here’s the recipe…
Kid’s Favorite Fondue
(page 108, The Vegetarian Slow Cooker)
Need: small (max 1/2 quart slow cooker)
1 can 28 ounces tomatoes (I used Pomi)
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
sliced baguette, celery sticks andsliced red pepper to serve and dip
Process tomatoes with juice. Transfer to cooker. Add spices and cook on high for 1 hour, until hot and bubbly. (I used a pan on the stovepot on low for about 30 minutes)
Add cheese in handfuls, stirring to combine.
Reduce heat to low and serve. Dip bread and/or veggies into fondue.