We have had the most glorious spring. After an unseasonably mild winter, spring came early. It's been warm and sunny and we have been grilling out more often than not. Today it's a seasonably appropriate dreary April day. My newly planted grass seed could certainly use the drink, and my husband could use a break from grill duty. I decided that I had a taste for my Easy Lentil Soup, but I was out of green lentils. However, I did have a bag of red lentils, so I created a new lentil soup recipe. This red lentil soup is just as easy to make as my other recipe. If you have never used red lentils before, they do not hold their shape like other lentils. They become creamy and delicious as they cook down. One of my favorite lentil soups uses sumac to add brightness and a little bit of sour flavor. I never have sumac, so I used fresh lemon juice after cooking the soup in the Instant Pot®. If you do have sumac, feel free to stir in a teaspoon before cooking the soup.
Today is the first day of spring break. Since we are not in a rush to head off to school, I had a bit more time to work on a cooking technique that I recently heard about. It is called the "pot-in-pot" method and it is used for cooking grains in the Instant Pot® pressure cooker. Instead of placing the grain (oats, rice, quinoa, etc.) directly in water in the Instant Pot®, you mix the grains with water in a bowl, place the bowl on a trivet, and then cook them that way. Most often this method is used to cook a grain WHILE you cook something else below it in the pressure cooker. I love this method, because it makes cleanup a breeze. If you like steel cut oats, give this method a try.
We love spicy food at our house. My boys love to outdo each other when eating hot sauce. Even my baby can handle some significant spice. My mother-in-law contends that her consumption of spicy foods while pregnant caused my husband to be hairy and to love spicy food himself. While this is probably not true, when it comes to my husband, the hotter the better. We go through a steady amount of Sriracha, Tabasco, Franks, and Nando's Peri Peri Sauce. Another favorite condiment is Sambal Oelek, an Indonesian-style chili paste. I recently bought a jar and immediately thought about using it in a marinade for chicken. With the addition of more ginger, garlic, honey, and some other Asian flavors, this marinade was spicy, sweet, and complex. I served the finished chicken over rice, topped with a sweet and spicy chili paste.
When I was little, my yiayia used to make what she called, Greek Fish. Sadly, I do not have her recipe. I do remember that she cooked whitefish in a tomato-based sauce, and it was delicious. Over the years, I have tried to recreate her recipe and I feel like the recipe I am going to share is the closest I have come. I rarely use theInstant Pot® for fish because it is an expensive ingredient and I would hate to waste it on a bad recipe. Now that I have had success with fish in the Instant Pot®, I plan to branch out and try more ideas.
Last year, I posted my favorite method for makingCorned Beef in the Instant Pot®. Since St. Patrick's Day is right around the corner, I wanted to revisit the recipe. I still love my original method, because it removes a lot of the salt. This recipe yields a more traditionally salty corned beef but has fewer steps and is still tender and delicious. My plan is to make colcannon in myInstant Pot® to serve along with it. Hopefully I can share a recipe for that soon.
The next few days are going to be kind of crazy. One of my kids is in his school play and has to be at school early in the morning and will not be home until late at night. Since we have to see the play in shifts, I need an "easy to reheat" dinner ready to go, so if I am not home, my husband can handle dinner. I spent the morning prepping mashed potatoes, mashed cauliflower, and making this AMAZING Italian Pot Roast in theInstant Pot®. We have enough food for two nights, and an impressive dinner, at that.
I always forget how much I love Chicken Cacciatore. It is so easy to make, full of rich flavors, and can be adapted for the Instant Pot®. Chicken Cacciatore is an Italian stewed chicken that simmers slowly in tomato sauce. It can be served over rice, noodles, or even on its own. Some recipes call for dusting the chicken in flour. I never do this, which makes this a great gluten-free recipe. I think the sauce is thick and rich without any added starch.
I am so excited to share this success. I have been attempting some sort of cake-type dessert since I got my Instant Pot® with zero success. With the exception of the occasional rice pudding or cheesecake, I don't make dessert in my Instant Pot®. I have tried a few things and failed, so I mainly stick with more savory applications. The idea of making a small, easy weeknight cake in the Instant Pot® sounds appealing. Almost everyone in my family has their birthday during the first 6 months of the year, mostly in March and April. We end up eating a lot of cake and it gets a little redundant and excessive. What if I could make each person a small little cake for their actual birthday and we can instead splurge on big cakes for friend and larger family parties. My kids might not agree to this, but I think it is a great idea. This little Lemon Yogurt Cake will be perfect for my almost 3 year old. Now that I have had success, I plan to try a couple of chocolate versions to make my boys happy.
Super Bowl LI is just around the corner. We are big football fans in our house. Once we have decided where to watch the game, it is time to start thinking about food. This will be my first Super Bowl with an Instant Pot®. In the past, I have used my slow cooker to make chili or meatballs. This year I am making pulled pork sandwiches in my Instant Pot® and am so excited to share the recipe with you. This sandwich is sweet, savory, full of crunch, and a little messy. I love it and think it will be the perfect thing to serve on Sunday. Even if you don't care about football, these sandwiches should be on your to-make list. Yummy.
I love Orange Chicken. There is an old-school Chinese restaurant in my neighborhood. Its décor has not been updated since the 1940s and they make a couple of things really well - namely Egg Rolls and Orange Chicken. Orange Chicken is deep fried deliciousness, covered in a sweet and sticky sauce. I only get a craving for it about once a year, which is good, because it's not exactly a health food. Plus, deep frying is not something I want to take on in my kitchen. I decided to try and adapt the flavors into a healthier version for theInstant Pot®. It was a huge success.
Hi, I am Julie and welcome to Instantly Delicious. I am so glad you are here to share in my adventures with using an Instant Pot ® to make easy, nutritious, and Instantly Delicious food.
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