Monday, 29 August 2016

And then there were four... Feisty Tapas groups

If you have been following my journey with Feisty Tapas for a while, you'll know I absolutely love the interaction and sense of community that Facebook groups provide. So, it probably is no surprise that I now run four Feisty Tapas groups. Yes, you read right, FOUR. All groups are Closed so your participation in them will not show on your friends' feeds unless your friends are also members.

Over the last few years Feisty Tapas has changed a lot. It has gone from a space just for me to put my thoughts out there as a new mummy to a whole community. 

I sometimes receive messages and comments from old readers, the ones who have known the blog since its beginnings, when I didn't think anyone was reading. Those messages and comments mention the blog in its previous format. One in particular stuck with me. It said something like "I miss your chatty posts". It took me a while to realise that the chatty posts hadn't disappeared. They had just moved. To my Facebook groups to be exact. Or to one Facebook group at the beginning. Then to another one. Then to another one. 

My Facebook groups have become a bit of a microblogging platform for me. 

Two of my groups are still restricted to the UK, why? Well, so that we can make moments like this happen...

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Pressure Cooker Seafood Pasta (with Instant Pot instructions)

Pressure Cooker Seafood Pasta (with Instant Pot instructions)I needed a quick dinner tonight and it had to be seafood. I absolutely love seafood. This Pressure Cooker / Instant Pot Seafood Pasta is very tasty, rather easy and also rather farfetchedly in the style of a quick Spanish fideuá.

Sorry for the rubbish photography but I'm blogging this one quickly for the members of my Pressure Cooking UK with Feisty Tapas Facebook group before I forget the recipe as this Pressure Cooker Seafood pasta was improvised in the Instant Pot tonight.

The advantage of the Instant Pot over a conventional pressure cooker is the advantage of programming it and not needing to supervise it.

Another advantage is that you can decide whether to slow cook on pressure cook in it depending on how much time you have in your hands. You can steam vegetables, cook rice and even make yoghurt in the Instant Pot DUO 7 in 1. The Instant Pot LUX 6 in 1 is just as awesome*.

But, the biggest advantage of them all, is that I look after Instant Pot UK's social media so you will find me behind their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts and running the Instant Pot® UK Community, basically making sure you make the most of your Instant Pot and use it regularly!

You can find all my pressure cooker/Instant Pot recipes here. If you are just getting started with your Instant Pot, you might like to read this.

Ready for the recipe?

Sunday, 7 August 2016

How to reheat frozen homemade food in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot

How to reheat frozen homemade food in a pressure cooker or #InstantPot by #FeistyTapasYou know those meals that you portion up for the freezer? Whichever gadget you cook them in (even if it's on a hob or in the oven), you can reheat them from frozen in
a pressure cooker and, of course, in an Instant Pot!

This works particularly well for bolognese, chilli, stews. Not great for fishy dishes, the fish can go a bit rubbery (I tried it with a fish curry and it wasn't great).

This is a brilliant tip that I learnt from Catherine Phipps herself, the author of The Pressure Cooker Cookbook. She does this in her stove-top pressure cookers so I adapted it to the Instant Pot:

Friday, 5 August 2016

Pressure Cooker Lemony Whole Chicken (with Instant Pot instructions)

 Instant Pot Lemony Whole Chicken (with Instant Pot instructions)There's been a lot of talk about how to cook a whole chicken lately in the Instant Pot® UK Community, a lot of brainstorming over whether the chicken should be breast down so that it's more moist. So I wanted to give it a go. I also didn't brown my chicken on Sauté this time (you can do this with some oil by pressing Sauté and then the Adjust button to set the Instant Pot to More).

The very succulent meat was used for several meals. First served with mashed potatoes and steamed vegetables. Then used in stir fries and even in sandwiches! You can pressure cook a lovely bone broth / chicken stock with the carcass once you've taken all the meat off. Chicken goes a long way in the Tapas household and I bet it does in yours too!

Ready for the recipe?

Monday, 1 August 2016

Perfect steamer baskets for your Instant Pot

Perfect steamer baskets for your Instant PotI am often asked about perfect steamer baskets (sometimes called steamer inserts) for the Instant Pot available here in the UK so I thought I'd compile them in one place, the Feisty Tapas blog (of course). The Instant Pot's inner pot has a diameter of 20 cm so you need something that will fit in there (some of them actually indicate that they are suitable for 20 cm pressure cookers, like the Kuhn Rikon).

These are the steaming baskets and inserts that I have and use all the time, as well as the ones that have good reviews from the people who use them regularly. If you are happy with your steamer basket and it's not included in this list, please let me know and I'll add it to the post and probably to my basket collection!

Have you taken the Instant Pot electric pressure cooker leap? You havent? You must know by now that there is nothing to be scared of, that it has ten safety mechanisms, that it's virtually silent and that you can set it and go, right? Even better, it pressure cooks and slow cooks (and at the end keeps your food warm). But not just that, I run a Pressure Cooking group on Facebook to support you and I'm Instant Pot UK's social media girl. So, basically, you will use it! Oh and I blog Instant Pot recipes with familiar UK measurements and ingredients right here.

Ready for my list of perfect steamer baskets for your Instant Pot all available in the UK?

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Pressure Cooker Beef with Mexican Spices (with Instant Pot instructions)

Some days you just need to use up something in the fridge because you hate waste but your energy levels are really low and all you can think of is putting your feet up. Well, this is exactly how this Pressure Cooker Beef with Mexican Spices recipe came about for my Instant Pot and this is also why it's so easy!

Basically a case of throwing ingredients in your pressure cooker or Instant Pot and letting it do its thing.

I had beef to use up, I remembered I had Skinnymixers Mexican Spice mix leftover in the cupboard and the rest just came about with a quick look in the fridge.

I looooove my Instant Pot. Of course, nowadays you could say I am biased as their Social Media Girl but I had my Instant Pot way before I had that job and I still totaly love it. On days like today, when I was really tired and needed something quick, the fact that it's virtually silent really helped. People with fibromyalgia call these days flare-ups or flares. I am too new to the concept and just call them bad pain days, because that's what I've been calling them for 25 years of chronic pain.

On days like today I love my kitchen gadgets and I hate my fibromyalgia.

By the way, have you joined my Facebook group Pressure Cooking UK with Feisty Tapas?

Ready for the recipe?

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

How to get started with your Instant Pot. A guide for beginners

So, you bought an Instant Pot, it's already at home or on its way and you're panicking that you're not going to use it enough or that you won't know how to use it, that it might be difficult to use...

Fear not! It's really easy to use and help is at hand at all times. As social media girl for Instant Pot UK that help might often come from me on their Facebook, Twitter or Instagram as well as the official Instant Pot® UK Community (an extension of Instant Pot UK's customer care) but don't forget that I also run my own Pressure Cooking with Feisty Tapas Facebook group.

Basically you will have no choice but to use it. No kitchen gadget worth the money will sit gathering dust on my watch!

The two models in the UK market (and markets covered from the UK) are the Instant Pot DUO 7 in 1 and the Instant Pot LUX 6 in 1. They work in similar ways. The DUO has a low pressure setting and a yoghurt function. They both can pressure cook, slow cook, steam, cook rice, cook porridge and keep your food warm at the end. The DUO also has a low pressure setting and a handy yoghurt function.

Feisty Tapas tells you the first steps to follow, recommended first recipes, tips and tricks

Both are really easy to use. They save time and money and, in my case, they totally save my sanity (I have one of each at home). They work silently for you while you have more time to get on with other stuff. Then they keep your food warm automatically at the end, even if you open the lid and help yourself to some of it, it will stay on Keep Warm for the next person. This is ideal in a household with a 6 year old (the little Tapita is six now!) who eats around 6pm and a commuting husband who doesn't get home until 8.30-9 most days. I can cook for my daughter, then I eat whenever I am ready (6pm is way too early for me to eat dinner), then food is kept warm for my husband when he gets home. 

Now, I know I own a lot of kitchen gadgets and that I now work with Instant Pot but this is me being totally honest: it's a great kitchen gadget that can make life easier so a great investment. Above all if you are stressed out trying to juggle work and family. If you happen to have a health condition like me and my chronic pain and fibromyalgia, you will appreciate how easy it is to use and how much it can save your sanity on a daily basis (and the fact that it's so silent it's a huge bonus if you have a problem with background noise).

There are a ton of recipes for it. Another bonus.

Did you miss the Amazon Prime Day offer? How about using the fantastic Feisty Tapas offer code?

Now, what to do when you first receive it:

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