Y’all know I’m no stranger to a slow cooker. In fact, I’ve got a collection of them – six, give or take a few. There’s just something about tossing ingredients into a slow cooker in the morning and coming home to a house filled with the smell of dinner, ready to eat. But not very often does my mind move beyond main course recipes when it comes to the slow cooker. Sure, I love to use it to keep my dipping chocolate warm when I’m making Christmas candies, but that’s about as far as my imagination goes. That is, of course, until I got my hands on Kendra Bailey Morris’s new cookbook, The Southern Slow Cooker.
You can find classic slow cooker staples like soups, stews, and chili, but what really got my attention was the inclusion of not-so-typical slow cooker recipes like Lemon Blueberry Buckle, Gingersnap Peach Upside-down Cake, Buttermilk Chocolate Spice Cake, even Pork Ribs with Raspberry Sorghum BBQ Sauce. Her book makes you realize that your slow cooker can be used for so much more than pot roast.
The recipes are only made even more tempting with the beautiful images from Erin Kunkel. If the recipe doesn’t draw you in, the photography sure will.
My perspective on cookbooks is a little different now with one of my own on the way, so I have a bit more appreciation for the hard work that goes into one. But trust me when I say that this cookbook will be a perfect addition to your collection. If you love the slow cooker as much as I do, you need to check this book out.
When I asked Kendra to recommend a recipe for me to try, she immediately said the Shrimp Creole. I already had my eye on that one based on my love of the dish and the photo that accompanies it in the book. Phenomenal is the perfect way to describe it. I’ll go out on the limb and say that I don’t often find recipes that suit my tastes and impress me over my own, but this one did. I’m almost a little embarrassed to admit that my Shrimp Creole (the one that is in my book) comes in second to this one. (Y’all don’t tell anyone I said that.)
Not only has Kendra and Ten Speed Press been so gracious as to share that Shrimp Creole recipe with y’all, but they are also going to give a copy of the book to one lucky Southern Bite Reader. See the contest box below for more details.
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Shrimp Creole from The Southern Slow Cooker
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup chopped onion
- ½ cup chopped celery
- 4 small cloves garlic, minced
- 1 16-ounce can diced tomatoes with its juice
- 1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
- ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper or more to taste
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ cup diced green bell pepper
- 1 pound medium-size shrimp, peeled and deveined
- Salt and black pepper
- Steamed long-grain rice, for serving
- Minced chives or green onions, for garnish
- Hot sauce, for serving
- Spray the inside of the slow cooker with cooking spray.
- Heat the butter and olive oil in a cast-iron pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and celery and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes, or until translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for another minute. Transfer the onion, celery, and garlic to the slow cooker and add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, thyme, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, salt, cayenne, and bay leaves. Cover and cook on low for at least 6 hours and up to 8 hours.
- One hour before serving, add the bell pepper and continue to cook on low. Finally, during the last 10 minutes, add the shrimp and cook until they are pink and slightly curled (be careful not to overcook). Season with salt and pepper. Remove the bay leaf and spoon over rice. Garnish with a sprinkling of fresh chives. Serve with hot sauce on the side.