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The Italian Slow Cooker Paperback – January 7, 2010
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The Amazon Book Review
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Finally a book that combines the fresh, exuberant flavors of great Italian food with the ease and comfort of a slow cooker. Michele Scicolone, a best-selling author and an authority on Italian cooking, shows how good ingredients and simple techniques can lift the usual "crockpot" fare into the dimension of fine food. Pasta with Meat and Mushroom Ragu, Osso Buco with Red Wine, Chicken with Peppers and Mushrooms: These are dishes that even the most discriminating cook can proudly serve to company, yet all are so carefree that anyone with just five or ten minutes of prep time can make them on a weekday and return to perfection.
Recipe Excerpts from The Italian Slow Cooker
Chicken Parmesan Heroes
The Butcher's Sauce
Chocolate Truffle Cake
From Publishers Weekly
Scicolone (The Sopranos Family Cookbook) turns her attention to the slow cooker (or crockpot) for preparing homey Italian dishes. In this accessible cookbook, she presents unintimidating recipes (which often suggest the ingredients simmer around 165 degrees for six to eight hours) that serve up hearty dishes with a minimum of fuss. The wide variety of main dishes—seafood, meats, veggies and legumes—and corresponding soups and sauces, capitalize on the flavor that only slow-cooked food can deliver. The sauces are the book's standouts, with recipes for ragus made with chunky pork shoulder or spicy Tuscan sausage, for example. She also includes recipes for a creamy polenta with gorgonzola and mascarpone; risotto-style farro with parmesan; seafood couscous made with halibut, shrimp and scallops; and braised beef with anchovies and rosemary. While her approach is certainly inventive and appealing, some recipes make one wonder whether a slow cooker is actually necessary (the stuffed peppers might be baked just as easily). That said, this cookbook will certainly relieve the time pressure on busy family cooks. (Dec.)
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Top customer reviews
It takes me about an hour to prep a meal and "walk away" from the crockpot, and most recipes require some sauce reduction at the end, about another ten minutes or less of cook time.
My family and myself have very much enjoyed every recipe I have have made so far. Only one recipe "failed" and that was the tomato sauce recipe. Perhaps I am spoiled by my wifes recipe, from her mother and so on, but the slow cooker tomato sauce can't compare with with my wife's. And I must point out that none of the frittatas set in the time indicated, they took about 2.5 hrs instead of the 75 minutes indicated in the recipe. My 4 yr old asks me to make the orange chicken weekly and my mother in law said some of the kindest things she has ever said about me after I made the balsalmic glazed short ribs which were a weekly item for about six weeks in my house, now its about every other week.
I think many of the recipes are healthy, many chicken and turkey recipes, little use of butter, I think every recipe uses olive oil, many have cheese added at the end, you can omit/cheese to taste if you are trying to reduce cheese intake.
In addition to my citicism of the frittata cook times I will also indicate that the desserts seem best suited to a 5 qt round slow cooker and not an 7 qt oval cooker. But that is a bit of an assumption on my part, that they would turn out better in the 5 qt round since I haven't tried it.
I am pleased with this cookbook and I would recommend it.