"I love anything with Cajun spices, so I came up with this slow-cooker jambalaya that’s just as good as that served in restaurants," says Jennifer Fulk from Moreno Valley, California. "If you can’t find Andouille sausage, hot links, smoked sausage or chorizo will also work. I like to serve it with warm cornbread and garnished with sliced green onions."
Meet the Cook: Even before it got cold outside last fall, my husband had asked me to make this stew twice. In fact, here at home, our name for it is "Tom's Favorite Stew".
We're the parents of two children - a 9-year-old boy and 8-year-old girl.
-Linda Schwarz, Bertrand, Nebraska
Add your family's favorite picante sauce to ground beef, black beans and corn, then watch how quickly they empty their bowls. This mixture freezes well, so I keep a batch on hand for quick nutritious meals.
Janet Brannan of Sidney, Montana
Meet the Cook: Because I've never entered a recipe contest before, I hesitated before sending my stew in. I knew, though, it not only was so good but anybody could make it. You just throw the ingredients into a pot and stir!
I've been cooking 40 years. My husband and I have one grown daughter.
-Carol Smith, Stuart, Florida
Meet the Cook: It's been 20 years now since I adapted this from a recipe for beef stew. We like it so much that, in all that time, I have never changed any ingredients or amounts - unless it was to double them!
Our home's on a river, and my husband, our three boys - 12, 10 and 9 - and I enjoy camping and boating.
-Valerie Jordan, Kingmont, West Virginia
Meet the Cook: With our busy schedule, I cook lots of stews. This one - handed down to me by my mother-in-law - is nice because you can prepare it on the weekend and reheat it during the week. It's a great full-course meal...put out hard rolls and French bread, and you're set.
My husband and I have a son, 11.
-Jeanne Dahling, Elgin, Minnesota
Meet the Cook: Green chilies are a big favorite here in the Southwest - my family likes anything with them in it.
Now that we are "empty nesters" (two married children and two grandchildren), my husband knows that I'm going to spring at least one new recipe on him each week. He's always brave!
-Pat Henderson, Deer Park, Texas
My family loves stew, and this recipe is perfect for the last few vegetables left in the garden. The best part of this recipe is that you can substitute whatever is available in your garden. It's perfect with freshly baked bread.
I had a delicious stew recipe but rarely prepared it because sausage can be high in fat and sodium, so I substituted low-fat turkey sausage. Now it not only tastes good, it feels goodboth hearty and healthy!
Lisa Zeigler-Day of Forest Park, Illinois
“Here’s a speedy and satisfying version of traditional minestrone soup. The fun polka-dot shapes of the couscous, baby carrots and black beans give this stew its name.”
-Teagan O'Toole, Boston, Massachusetts