What a Crock!: It’s not too late for slow-cooking recipes, gifts _lowres

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- Chicken Lentil Soup

Procrastinators take note: There are still slow-cooking ideas for the holidays, whether it be recipes, cookbooks on the subject, or the slow cooker itself.

A Google search turned up countless cookbook options including “The Paleo Slow Cooker,” several for healthy eaters, and even a few for “quick” slow cooker recipes.

A local bookstore search yielded several more good cookbook ideas, including one by Nicole Sparks and Jenna Marwitz, “The Crockin’ Girls Slow Cooking Companion,” and “Everything Healthy Slow Cooker Cookbook” by Rachel Rappaport.

Yes, I know there are lots of other recipe avenues out there today. There are apps, Pinterest, Facebook, etc., but if you want the old-fashioned cookbook, there’s a plentiful selection of them.

This is also the time of year when lots of redesigned slow cookers make their way to the market or even a larger than usual selection of the old standards. Think about your needs and your budget.

Do you feel like you need one with a timer? Do you have a particular design need for your kitchen décor? What is your family size? For a family two to four, the 4- to 4½-quart model will be fine.

A larger family will need to look at the 5- to 6-quart or larger models. That would also depend, however, on how one cooks. If you like to cook larger amounts to share with other family members or to freeze, go with the larger model.

Best of all, the deals are out there. Watch the sale ads. Here’s a hearty recipe to get you started on your shopping.

Julie Kay is a columnist for The Advocate. She can be reached at juliekay6122@gmail.com.