Sunday, January 11, 2015

The Art of Healthy Eating-Slow Cooker Review

I've been reading Maria Emmerich's blog MariaMindBodyHealth for a couple years now.  She leans more towards the Ketogenic school of thought which I think is great for some people, but not necessary for everyone.  She has written several nutrition information (diet) books and cook books.  They seem to get mixed reviews on Amazon, people complain that all the information/recipes can be found on her website or is already in every other paleo/low carb book.  I can honestly say, there are loads of recipes in this book that are not on her website.  I love that many of the recipes are very simple, and many do not require you to brown meat before adding it to the slow-cooker.

My negative critiques about this book repeats what many other people have said, there are several grammatical errors.  In the beginning of the book, her description of several "healthy" ingredients is written in a choppy manner, I think she was trying to be brief and save room for more recipes.  A few recipes seem to have vague instructions.  For people without much cooking background this could cause a little confusion.

For people with a major dairy sensitivity, this book may not be for them.  Many recipes contain cream cheese, sour cream, or cheese.  Coconut milk could replace them in some places, but in others it simply won't work.

Some people will not agree with, or will be turned off by Maria's judicious use of stevia and xylitol.  I found it interesting that she even uses them in her savory dishes, however when I think about it, many traditional recipes do add a touch of sugar in some form to balance any bitterness or tartness from the vegetables and spices.  I have Pyure baking stevia, and have used it in a couple of the recipe and on my own a few times.  In the savory recipes such as the Chicken mole, you don't get any of the weird stevia licorice aftertaste, but I haven't made any of the desert items which use more of it.  Partially because I don't feel the need to have any desert items in the house right now just after the holidays.

So far Ryan and I have made:

Chicken Mole with cauliflower rice.  It was sooooo good!  And Ryan is now a cauliflower rice convert, mostly because he can eat it and not need to add another vegetable to the meal.

Reuben Chicken.  Another delicious and very easy recipe.  I whipped it together in about 5 minutes.  Of course anything that starts off with a jar of Bubbie's Sauerkraut is probably going to taste pretty good.

Shredded Beef.  I was actually surprised at how good this one was.  The combination of tomato and balsamic vinegar was delicious!  Confession...the recipe calls for red-wine vinegar and we didn't have any so I used balsamic and a little soy sauce.  Instead of serving it over mashed cauliflower we ate ours with baked sweet potatoes and sauteed broccoli.

Turkey (Chicken Tetrazzini).  Ryan doesn't typically like really creamy dishes such as fettucchini or chowders, so I made this one for myself while he was traveling. I'm really trying to avoid/limit dairy right now, so I left out the cream cheese and parm; instead I cubed 1/2 an avocado and threw that on top of my bowl.  It definitely would have been better with the cream cheese, but it was filling.  Drizzling some balsamic vinegar over the top also enhanced the flavor later in the week when I was out of avocados.

If you are looking for a real food slow cooker (crockpot) cookbook, I highly recommend Maria's The Art of Healthy Eating-Slow Cooker.   Even if you are not following a Primal or Low Carb diet, you won't be disappointed.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for posting this! I made it last minute because we had all the ingredients on hand.