Thursday, January 31, 2008

Mac and Cheese Florentine

Let me make one thing clear: I really want to like Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker. I absolutely love to cook in my crocker and the idea of being able to prepare healthy vegan meals in it is greatly appealing. But so far, all the recipes I've tried seem to be off the mark.

A couple nights ago, I prepared the Mac and Cheese Florentine recipe and, like all the other recipes I've prepared from this book, it was good but desperately underseasoned. I even doubled the white miso paste from 1 to 2 tablespoons, and it was still rather bland. One thing I liked very much about this recipe was the addition of spinach. But, the noodles were limp and overcooked, though that could very well have been my fault since the cook time in the book was 3 hours on "Low", but we ended up needing to leave it in there more like 3.5 hours. Still, that doesn't explain the lackluster flavor.

However, shouldn't there be a little leeway with crock pot cook times? Isn't that one of the things we all like crock pot cooking? The flexibility? Perhaps my expectations need to be adjusted. I already know to amp up and embellish the seasonings with the recipes in this book. Maybe I'm just not picking the right recipes. I still have faith that Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker will prove to be a good investment, even if it means I need to alter the recipes to my own tastes. But for now, I think I'll simplify things and just try to cook some beans next.

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