Black rice (also known as forbidden rice) has come into vogue lately, and for good reason. It has a nice nutty flavor, a toothsome but tender texture, and it’s packed with nutrients. It also looks very, very cool.
Luckily, it’s also very easy to make in a pressure cooker (such as an Instant Pot). I have a recipe for Forbidden Rice With Grapefruit and Jalapeno in my new book (out May 1), but until then, here’s the basics of how to cook black rice:
Pressure Cooker Black (Forbidden) Rice
makes about 3 cups
1 cup black rice, rinsed and drained
1 1/4 cup water or broth
1 teaspoon oil
1 pinch salt
For electric pressure cookers: Cook at high pressure for 23 minutes. Use a 10-minute natural release followed by a quick release.
For stovetop pressure cookers: Cook at high pressure for 20 minutes. Use a 10-minute natural release followed by a quick release.
My new zine is out! It’s a recipe zine titled Low Country Boil. Each zine is hand-assembled by me and the cover and back page are hand-painted, making each one unique. Available at Skylight Books in sunny LA or online (via me) for $5. I’ll happily mail you one, just give me a shout!
I always make boiled eggs in the pressure cooker. It takes no time at all, they always turn out perfectly, and they peel easier than the traditional method. Here’s the basic method for pressure cooking eggs:*
- Fill your pressure cooker with a little over a cup of water. Add the trivet or, even better, a steamer basket.
- Add the eggs. You can add as many as you like, as long as they are stable (won’t fall over and break while cooking) and are not touching the sides of the pot.
- Secure the lid and cook at LOW pressure. 4 minutes for soft boiled, 8 minutes for hard boiled.
- Meanwhile, prepare an ice water bath.
- Once the cook time is up, manually release the pressure and place the eggs in the ice water.
- Once cool to the touch, store in the fridge or peel and eat.
*Cook times are for electric pressure cookers.
Now that Thanksgiving is upon us, I thought I’d share a recipe from my last book for brown sugar sweet potatoes. I’m often struggling to figure out how to squeeze everything in the oven on the big day, so moving one dish to the cooker is a big help. The potatoes steam in the cooker before being sliced in two. Each half is topped with a brown sugar topping and quickly broiled right before serving. Lightly sweet with a little crunch on top, these sweet potatoes are a top-notch Thanksgiving side.
Sweet Potatoes with Brown Sugar Topping
from The Instant Pot Electric Pressure Cooker Cookbook
Serves 6 to 8
1 cup water
6 medium sweet potatoes, pricked a few times with a fork
4 tablespoons butter, cubed
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pinch salt
- Add water to the pot and place a steamer basket or trivet on top. Arrange the sweet potatoes on the basket or trivet. Secure the lid.
- Cook at high pressure for 12 to 18 minutes (12 for small potatoes, 15 for medium, 18 for large).
- In a small bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients. Use your fingers to press the mixture together until a crumbly topping is formed.
- Once the cooking is complete, use a natural release for 10 minutes followed by a quick release.
- Preheat the oven to broil.
- Carefully transfer the potatoes to a large baking sheet. Slice each in half lengthwise and lay cut-side up. Sprinkle each half with 1 heaping tablespoon of topping and broil for 3 to 5 minutes, until lightly crispy.
I’ve been making yogurt in my Instant Pot on the reg for years now. And while the method I wrote about a couple of years ago still works, I don’t tend to use it anymore. You see, I had a cheap jar break in the midst of making yogurt, and all it takes is your kitchen covered in hot milk and glass shards to make you rethink your methods.
Keep in mind that it was a cheap jar. I reused an apple sauce jar, and chances are it already had a small crack. If you use thick canning jars, you should be out of danger.
But! If you’d rather make your yogurt directly in the pot, here’s the basic method I use. It’s more convenient if you plan to strain your yogurt, Greek-style.
- Add milk to the pot. I don’t recommend making more than a gallon at a time, but any amount between 2 cups and a gallon is fine. Whole milk makes the creamiest yogurt, followed by 2% and then skim.
- Secure the lid and select Yogurt. Press the Adjust button until the display says “boil.”
- The Instant Pot is bringing the milk up to 180 degrees. You can safely open the lid during this process, and I like to whisk the milk every 5-10 minutes to keep it from scalding on the bottom of the pot.
- Once the program is finished and the display says “Yogt,” remove the lid and stir. Use a candy thermometer or instant thermometer to make sure that the milk has reached at least 180 degrees. If not, turn on the Saute function on low and stir until the milk comes to temperature.
- Remove the inner pot so that it cools faster. Let the milk cool until it reaches 105-110 degrees. To speed up the process, set the pot in a pan of cold water, stirring occasionally.
- Once cooled to 105-110 degrees, prepare the starter. Add 2 tablespoons of plain yogurt with active cultures per 1/2 gallon of milk to a small mixing bowl. Add about a cup of the warm milk and whisk. Add the mixture to the pot and stir. Return the pot to the cooker, drying off the outside if needed.
- Secure the lid and select Yogurt. The display should says “8:00.” Leave the milk to incubate for 8 hours.
- Once the program is complete, remove the pot and place it in the fridge for several hours until completely chilled. If you’d like Greek yogurt, you can now strain it in the fridge for 30 minutes to 4 hours, depending on how thick you like your yogurt.
- Store the yogurt in containers in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
I will never cease to be amazed by pressure cooker risotto.
Risotto is a dish I’ve always loved, but rarely made at home because standing over a hot pan and constantly stirring isn’t my idea of a good time. Now I make it at least once a month since the pressure cooker takes all the pressure off (oy). It’s almost completely hands-off—you can literally walk away while the risotto cooks. It’s the best.
I’ve talked about how you can make risotto with brown rice, but did you know you can also make it with farro? The whole grain has a lightly nutty flavor and pleasantly chewy texture, and it make a surprisingly creamy risotto. It’s a great way to add some whole grains to your life.
Get the recipe here.
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