Link Round-Up, 4.11.17

homemade-ruin-cake

Here’s some recent articles featuring my byline! All include a recipe! Whoop dee doo!

Link Round-Up, 4.11.17

Pressure Cooker Brown Rice Risotto

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One of the most popular dishes to make in a pressure cooker is risotto. Instead of standing over a hot pot and stirring stirring stirring, the rice cooks away all on its own and emerges creamy and flavorful. It’s wonderful.

There are a couple of risotto recipes in my cookbook, but the variations are endless. I recently made a version using brown rice! It was super tasty and healthier than the typical version. You’ll just need a few more minutes of cooking time.

Note that this recipe is written for an electric pressure cooker, but will work with a stove top version as well.

Brown Rice Risotto
Serves 2-3 (you can easily double this recipe)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup dry white wine or 3 tablespoons dry vermouth
1 cup short-grain brown rice
2 cups good-quality chicken or vegetable stock
Salt
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
Mix-ins (see below)

Heat your pressure cooker using the Sauté function. Once hot, add the oil followed by the onion. Sauté for 3 minutes or until the onions are becoming translucent. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add white wine or vermouth and cook, scraping the bottom, until most of the liquid is absorbed.

Turn off the Sauté function and add the rice, stock, and a healthy pinch of salt. Secure the lid and cook for 25 minutes at high pressure and use a natural release.

While the rice is cooking, prepare your mix-ins. I have some ideas for you below.

Once the pressure has been released, remove the lid and add the butter and Parmesan. Stir vigorously for a few minutes until the rice is creamy. Add your mix-ins and stir. Serve topped with a little more Parmesan and perhaps a chopped fresh herb.

Mix-ins (mix and match!)

  • 1-2 links of high-quality sausage, cooked through and broken up or sliced
  • Sautéd chopped fresh spinach
  • Sautéd mushrooms with thyme
  • Roasted butternut squash and fresh sage
  • Roasted or sautéd asparagus and lemon
  • Broiled shrimp
  • Fresh, lightly cooked green peas
Pressure Cooker Brown Rice Risotto

Lemon Berry Cake

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I was tasked with making a dessert for roughly 25-30 people attending a baby shower last weekend. The mom-to-be and I decided on a lemony berry-y concoction, and this is what I came up with. It was a bit precarious to transport, but it looked nice, tasted good, and fed the right amount of people. Success!

The cake is a basic 1-2-3-4 cake with a dose of vanilla and lemon zest added. I baked mine in the three-tiered wedding-style configuration—if you do that, just keep an eye on the layers since they’ll bake at different rates. Start checking them at 20 minutes. The easier way is to cook them in three 9-inch pans like the recipe calls for, but I didn’t have three. You work with what you got. Note that you can make the lemon curd beforehand (it’ll keep in the fridge for 1 week).

The combo of the sweet cake, tart lemon curd, fresh berries, and fluffy whipped cream is just so good. Technically you could leave out the berries or you could leave out the curd. It’d still be good, just not quite as good. But I get it if you don’t want to prep four things.

 

1-2-3-4 Cake
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 lemons, zested
3 cups sifted self-rising flour*
1 cup milk

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare your three 9″ pans by greasing and flouring well.

Using an electric mixer, cream butter until fluffy. Add sugar and continue to mix well for 6 to 8 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and zest and mix well.

Add flour and milk alternately to mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Divide batter equally among prepared pans. Level batter in each pan.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a tester or toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool on wire racks for 5-10 minutes before turning the cakes out of their pans and cooling completely.

* Make your own self-rising flour if you don’t have any. 1 cup self-rising flour = 1 cup all-purpose flour, minus 2 teaspoons + 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder + 1/2 teaspoon salt.


Lemon Curd
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen/The Joy of Cooking

4 egg yolks
3/4 cups sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 small lemons, zested and juiced

Put all ingredients in a double boiler over boiling water. Don’t let top pan touch the water. Cook and stir until mixture begins to gel or thicken ever-so-slightly. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Cover and refrigerate it to thicken.


Berries

1 package fresh strawberries, washed and dried
1 small package raspberries, washed and drained
1 small package blueberries, washed and drained

Hull the strawberries and slice into 2-4 slices lengthwise, depending on their size. If your strawberries are not very sweet, you can toss them in a bowl with a tablespoon or two of sugar.


Whipped Cream

1 pint heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Chill a large, clean mixing bowl in the freezer for 10-15 minutes. Add the cream and vanilla and whip using a stand mixer with the whisk attachment or a hand-held mixer. Add the sugar gradually, a tablespoon at a time. Whip until stiff peaks form.


How to Assemble:

Place one cooled cake layer on a cake stand or serving plate. Top with 1/3 of the lemon curd in a thin layer, followed by 1/3 of the whipped cream and a single layer of berries. If you soaked your strawberries in sugar, be sure to drain them before using. Top with another cake layer and repeat twice. For the final layer, arrange the fruit in a pretty design. Or don’t! Whatever you want. Store in the refrigerator until serving.

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Lemon Berry Cake

Pressure Cooker Corned Beef

Real-life-leprechaun-dog
I don’t know what’s happening here but I got this from That Dad Blog

It’s that time of year when people eat unnaturally green food and it’s okay! And everyone tries to remember how to make corned beef. No need to worry, I’ve got your back. Below is my recipe for pressure cooked corned beef from my book The Instant Pot® Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook: Easy Recipes for Fast & Healthy Meals. It’s so easy and great with a mug of beer.

Corned Beef
Serves 8

1 (3 1/2-4 lb) flat-cut corned beef
1 (12-oz) bottle beer
2 cups chicken or beef broth
1 onion, quartered
1 bay leaf
Pepper

Rinse the corned beef and pat dry. Trim off the excess fat, leaving a thin layer behind.

Place the meat in the pressure cooker and cover with beer and broth. Add onion and bay leaf and season with pepper. Secure the lid.

Select Manual and cook at high pressure for 1 1/2 hours and use a natural release.

Let rest before slicing.

Pressure Cooker Corned Beef

Fluffy Pumpkin Muffins

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I know, I know. More muffins? You might as well call yourself The muffin (wo)man. Fine! I’ll call myself that. I just like a good muffin sometimes—they can be nutritious* and they’re easy to make and they freeze well, making them a go-to breakfast. I tried this recipe a couple of weeks ago and I am still heating up frozen ones. They’re still delicious! Super fluffy and moist and everything.

Fluffy Pumpkin Muffins
adapted from Elle Krieger’s recipe
Makes about 12 muffins

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon allspice (or a combo of nutmeg and clove)
1/2 cup well-packed dark brown sugar, plus sugar for sprinkling on top
3 tablespoons molasses
1/4 cup canola oil
2 eggs or 2 flax eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1/4 cup milk or non-dairy milk

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease one 12-cup muffin pan.

In a bowl, whisk together flours, baking soda, salt, and spices.

In a large bowl, whisk sugar, molasses, oil and eggs until well combined. Mix in the pumpkin and vanilla. Add the flour mixture in 2 batches, adding the yogurt and milk in between batches. Mix just until combined.

Fill the muffin pan slots about 2/3 full and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for about 20 minutes a muffin passes the toothpick test.

*not all muffins are nutritious

Fluffy Pumpkin Muffins

Pressure Cooker Oatmeal in a Mug

mug-oatmeal

You guys! Did you know you can make steel-cut oatmeal in your electric pressure cooker in a mug? This means you can 1) make oatmeal for just one or two people, 2) flavor each individually however you like, and 3) it’s so easy and there’s basically no clean-up. Magical.

Just do this:

  1. Pour 1-2 cups of water into your pressure cooker pot and add the trivet.
  2. Add 1/4 cup steel-cut oats, 3/4 cup water (or part water and part milk), 1 pinch salt, 1 teaspoon butter or oil, and any flavorings to a mug (you can also add flavorings after you cook it). Stir.
  3. Set your mug (or mugs—most pressure cookers will hold two) on the trivet. Secure the top and cook at high pressure for about 20 minutes.
  4. Use a natural release! Trust me.
  5. Carefully remove the mug(s) and let sit for 5-10 minutes. Stir and add any mix-ins. EAT IT.

Note: Make sure your mug is heat-proof and ceramic. Glass will work too, but it must be tempered.

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Pressure Cooker Oatmeal in a Mug

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes

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When cooking at home, I dabble with vegan baking in an effort to make things a bit healthier/I’m too lazy to run to the market for eggs. One vegan recipe that never fails me is chocolate cake. It’s super easy to make, doesn’t take any weird ingredients, and turns out moist and delicious. If I’m making chocolate cake at home, 95% of the time I’m making a recipe like the one below. Even if you’re not vegan (I’m not) try it out! So good.

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes
adapted from Chowhound
makes 10-12 cupcakes

1/2 cup plain almond or soy milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup room temperature coffee
1/3 cup canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line one muffin pan with liners.
2. Add the milk and vinegar to a large bowl and mix. Let sit for a few minutes to curdle. Add the sugar, coffee, oil, and vanilla and whisk until well combined.
3. In a separate bowl, sift together all of the dry ingredients (flour, cocoa, soda, baking powder, salt).
4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in a couple of batches and whisk until no large lumps remain.
5. Fill the liners 2/3 full. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool completely before icing or eating.

I used this vegan chocolate frosting recipe. Cut the recipe by 1/3 if you’re making the recipe above as written.

Vegan Chocolate Cupcakes