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Dear Joyce: I've been looking for slow-cooker recipes and found this one I thought I would share.

I would like slow-cooker recipes in return.

Ginger-apricot pork tenderloin

1 tbsp. toasted sesame oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tbsp. grated ginger

1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes

2/3 cup apricot preserves

1 tbsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce

1 lb. well-trimmed pork tenderloin

1/2 tsp. salt

Heat sesame oil in pan over medium-high heat.

Add garlic, ginger and pepper flakes and cook 45 seconds, stirring until fragrant.

Add preserves and soy sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally to thicken slightly.

Remove from heat. Measure out 2 tbsp. sauce and set aside.

Sprinkle pork with salt and place in 4-quart slow cooker coated with cooking spray. Pour ginger-apricot sauce on pork.

Cover and cook on high 2-3 hours or on low 4-6 hours. Or until thermometer inserted into thickest part of loin registers 160 degrees.

Transfer pork to cutting board. Let stand 10 minutes before cutting into 12 slices. Top each serving with reserved sauce.

This is also low-calorie. Three slices of pork with a little more than a teaspoon of sauce is 290 calories. Add noodles and a vegetable, and it could a meal at maybe 400 calories. — Reader, via e-mail.

Dear reader: Great for someone trying to diet as long as you kept your other meals in line. Readers, please return the favor with slow-cooker recipes of your own.

Dear readers: I sampled these pumpkin bars at a Michels family get-together, and they are so good I had to share. The recipe is from Kay Lynn Michels. Thank you!

Pumpkin bars

2 cups flour

2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. soda

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1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Cream 3/4 cup butter and 2 cups sugar until light and fluffy.

Blend in 2 cups pumpkin with 4 eggs.

Add dry ingredients and nuts if desired. (The bars I tasted had nuts.)

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

Cream cheese frosting

3 oz. cream cheese

1/3 cup butter

1 tsp. vanilla

Mix with 3 cups or less powdered sugar.

Mix well.

Please send recipes and requests to Just ask Joyce; c/o The Billings Gazette; P.O. Box 36300; Billings, MT 59107 or email to

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