I had never cooked giant cous cous until a few weeks ago when I saw it in Aldi. I tried a quick lunch experiment and it turned out well so last week I decided to recreate it with a few added touches. It turned out amazing and it’s so quick and easy….
vegetable stock paste
This Instant Pot Squid Stew is so tasty and it’s amazing how tender the squid goes! I’m posting it quickly for Dejanka to have and will make it prettier later on. Serve it on its own, with plain rice, with pasta or with quinoa like Alli did below. If you want a quick method to cook quinoa in your Instant Pot (the best quinoa), just ask.
LittleT loved it!!
Let me know if you enjoy it….
You may have already gathered from my last two recipes that I am a big fan of soup. Yes, I admit it, I love soup. When you can pressure cook your own Chicken broth or stock at home in no time and without filling the house with its smell, it becomes a weekly staple and, once you have that stock or broth (whatever you prefer to call it) in the fridge, it’s so versatile!…
This is one of the myriad of recipes you can cook after pressure cooking a whole chicken in the Instant Pot. Find the method for pressure cooking whole chicken first here.
Then, after making Chicken Stock as per that delicious recipe. You can keep the stock and some of the meat (or just the stock and none of the meat) to make this Instant Pot Soup with Greens, Beans, Potatoes and Chorizo.
If you fancy the idea of this recipe but are not a meat eater and wish it didn’t have the chorizo or the chicken stock, how about making it vegetarian or vegan by preparing my Vegetable Stock Paste and cooking this soup with 1 litre of water, 3 tablespoons of my vegetable stock paste, 1 tsp of paprika and omitting the chorizo, keep the potatoes, the greens and the beans….
Hello! Here I am again. Being perfectly imperfect. Did you read last week’s Thermomix recipe post? No? Make sure you do! But make sure you read this one too and then add it to this week’s menu plan. Julie’s Thermomix Mexican Bean Soup is really good and really worth making now that the weather has turned bitterly cold.
I’ve been giving some thought to what Feisty Tapas is all about nowadays lately. We’ve been through a lot together over the past few years eh! Then things went crazy when I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia last year.
It wasn’t until earlier this year that I was called a perfectionist. “Perfectionist?! Me????”, it tooks months but I did come to realise that perhaps I am, perhaps I am a perfectionist and then it took a few more months to kick perfectionism in the derrière. No one is perfect, right? Care to be imperfect with me? It’s going to be great fun and lead to lots more posts and recipes!
This time of year in 2015 our Christmas Fairy Vanessa was getting us all busy with Christmas Makes. Do not forget, start making your lime pickle and your Christmas pudding! The Christmas Makes list is right here. It will be constantly added to so keep checking it for more things to make.
Ready for Julie’s Thermomix Mexican Bean Soup recipe?
Julie’s Thermomix Mexican Bean Soup
Serves: 8 approx
– 1 red onion
– 2 garlic cloves
– 1 red pepper
– 1 yellow pepper
– Extra virgin olive oil
– 2 tins of chopped tomatoes
– 1 tin mixed beans OR equivalent drained weight (approx. 240 g) in homecooked dry beans. I pressure cooked the contents of a Waitrose Love Life 500 g 10 Bean Mix packet in the Instant Pot covered with water. Manual, 30 minutes, natural release. Rinse and soak them first.
– 1 tin green lentils
– 1 tbsp Skinnymixer’s Mexican Spice Mix (you can make my Instant Pot Beef Stew with Mexican Spices with the leftovers) OR Schwartz Cajun Spice works well
– 1 tsp of my homemade vegetable stock paste
– 2 tbsp Demerara sugar (optional, I didn’t add it)
– 8 squares Green & Black’s 70% chocolate (optional, more calories but worth it for the flavour)
– Tortilla chips
– Limes, cut into wedges
– Wensleydale cheese
– Cumin seeds, toasted
1. Chop red onion and garlic: 5 seconds, speed 5.
2. Manually chop 1 red and 1 yellow pepper into bite sized bits. Add to bowl.
3. Add oil and sauté 10 mins, Varoma (120ºC in TM5), Reverse, Speed 1.
4. Chuck in the tinned tomatoes, mixed beans and green lentils. Add 1 tbsp of the Mexican Spice Mix. Add 2 tbsp Demerara sugar (optional but add if you don’t like sharp tomatoes).
5. Fill bowl to just below the MAX line with water and add 1 tsp vegetable stock paste. Cook 20 mins, 100ºC, REVERSE, speed 1.
Optional step. Add about 6/8 squares dark chocolate 2 mins before end of cooking time. This increases the calories quite a bit but adds real depth of flavour.
At home we like Mexican Bean Soup served with lime wedges to drizzle the soup with lime juice. A handful of scrunched up tortilla chips (basically, grab a handful and scrunch them up to add them to your soup). Little chunks of Wensleydale. Toasted cumin seeds.
Note: Have some of the Mexican spice mix left? It goes great in this Instant Pot Beef with Mexican Spices recipe.
If anything doesn’t make sense, remember we’re going for perfectly imperfect and you know where to find me, yes in the Thermo Cooking UK with Feisty Tapas Facebook group of course!
**This post contains affiliate links, thanks for supporting Feisty Tapas**
This All-in-One Pressure Cooker Sausage and Tomato Pasta was improvised today in the Instant Pot for the little Tapita’s dinner, it went down so well that I thought I’d share it with you all. Even better, there are leftovers.
The little Tapita very excitedly proclaimed that the sauce and the pasta taste like dumplings. She’s very into dumplings since we have a dumpling man at Ely Market on Saturdays.
I used Heck’s Chicken Italia sausages, they are very thin, like chipolatas, if you are using thicker sausages, make sure you fry them really well otherwise they may not be quite cooked in the short time it takes to cook the pasta.
I have another one pot pasta recipe for the Instant Pot right here. And a fabulous Mac and Cheese recipe here. Soon I’ll publish my one pot Tuna Pasta too. All my Instant Pot recipes are right here, all with UK ingredients and measurements.
Ready for the recipe?
Instant Pot Sausage and Tomato Pasta
This Instant Pot Sausage and Tomato Pasta would probably serve two hungry people or four with a normal appetite. In my child’s case it’s two, the girl eats a lot. If you decide to double it, make sure you double everything as the pasta expands and needs the liquid.
– 5 Heck Chicken Italia sausages (or whatever sausages you want. These heck sausages are very thin, like chipolatas, if you are using thicker sausages, make sure you fry them really well otherwise they may not be quite cooked in the short time it takes to cook the pasta)
– Extra virgin olive oil or oil of your choice
– Half a large onion (or one smaller onion), finely chopped
– 1 small carrot, finely chopped
– 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
– A couple of glugs of red wine
– A good glug of Worcestershire sauce
– Tin of chopped tomatoes
– 150 g fusilli (Waitrose Essential to be exact)
– 300 ml water
– Vegetable stock, I added a teaspoon of my homemade stock paste. If you are using a cube I’d cut it in half for this amount of pasta.
– 1 tsp dry parsley (I would have added mixed herbs but I’m out of the usual mix I make)
Note for Thermomix users: you can chop the onion, carrot and garlic together for 5 seconds, speed 5.
1. Add the oil and press Sauté, brown sausages for a few minutes, add a dash of red wine and deglaze scraping any burnt bits off with a wooden spoon.
2. Add the onion, carrot and garlic. Keep sautéing for a couple of minutes. Add the Worcestershire sauce, give it a couple more minutes and deglaze with another dash of red wine 🍷
3. Press Keep Warm/Cancel and add the rest of the ingredients. Stir. Lock lid in. Steam release handle pointing to Sealing. Press the Manual or Pressure Cook button and use the – and + buttons to programme 5 minutes. At the end of the cooking time do a 3 minute natural release followed by a quick release. If you want it more al dente do a 2 minute quick release.
– Quick release means venting the steam as soon as the pressure cooking process finishes, i.e. moving the steam release handle from Sealing to Venting. This video shows you how to do it.
– Natural release means letting the float valve pop back down of its own accord, so basically you don’t need to do anything at the end and can keep your feet up. No need to cancel the automatic Keep Warm function. If it takes over 15 minutes, you’re ok to release the rest of the steam (by turning the steam release handle to Venting) that may be left in order to unlock and open the lid.
Tip: if you use a different pasta shape just remember that the key is in halving the cooking time and not waiting too long to do a quick release, otherwise it may be overcooked, if it’s undercooked, pop the lid back on and let it rest for a little while
Let me know if you try my Instant Pot Sausage and Tomato Pasta over on my Facebook Page.
Have you joined my Pressure Cooking UK with Feisty Tapas Facebook group? As Instant Pot’s social media girl, I also run the Instant Pot® UK Community. If you are wondering about buying an Instant Pot, feel free to send any questions. You can find all my pressure cooker / Instant Pot recipes right here.
**This post contains affiliate links, thanks for supporting Feisty Tapas**
I am a big fan of serrano ham, it’s right up there with chorizo (chorizo being the clear winner as you may have gathered from previous recipes). In particular I love serrano ham with very garlicky mushrooms (recipe here). So this Chicken, Serrano Ham, Mushroom Stew was bound to happen sooner or later.
I own an electric pressure cooker (which also slow cooks, etc.), mine is an Instant Pot and I love it for the convenience of being able to walk away from it, it means I can programme it and walk away from it without having to hang around for it to hiss and then set a timer (so, if you’re making this in a stove-top pressure cooker, all you need to do is hang around and programme the time, which should be the same). All my Instant Pot and pressure cooking recipes are right here.
If you’re making it the conventional way or on a slow cooker, just follow the first sauteing/frying steps and let it run for a few hours in your slow cooker.
Serve this with mashed potatoes, cauliflower rice, cauliflower mash, vegetables, whatever takes your fancy but don’t forget a good slice of crusty bread to dip in that lovely sauce.
Don’t forget to join my Pressure Cooking UK with Feisty Tapas group over on Facebook.
– 75 g serrano ham, diced (you could use a gammon joint/ham cooked in your Instant Pot of course, here‘s a recipe)
– 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– 750 g chicken thigh fillets, diced
– 1 medium onion, chopped
– 5 garlic cloves, chopped
– 175 g mushrooms, sliced
– 100 ml dry white wine
– 1 teaspoon chicken stock paste or half a chicken stock cube (or of course you could use my Vegetable Stock Paste which is full of flavour)
– A couple of handfuls of cherry tomatoes
– Salt and pepper
Instant Pot method:
1. Press the Sauté button, add the oil and, when it starts feeling a bit hot, add the diced serrano ham and fry it for a few minutes until it starts getting a bit golden, stir a few times.
2. Season the diced chicken with salt and pepper and add it to the inner pot to brown, stirring regularly and making sure it doesn’t catch at the bottom. If it does catch easily, you can turn the Sauté heat back down by pressing Keep Warm / Cancel followed by the Sauté button and then, immediately, the Adjust button twice to set the IP to Less (if you have v3 of the DUO / you received your DUO from June 2018, just keep pressing Sauté until the light under less is lit up).
3. Add the chopped onion and garlic (in Thermomix 5 seconds on speed 5) and stir well, let it sweat for a little while and then add the mushrooms, stir. Add the white wine and chicken stock. Scrape the bottom with a wooden spoon to deglaze the pot, make sure you get rid of any caramelised bits. Let it bubble a minute or so with the lid off for the wine to reduce a bit and not taste so strong later. Add the tomatoes, no need to stir. Lock the lid in, steam release handle pointing to Sealing, press Poultry and use the – and + buttons to programme 5 minutes, natural release.
At the end you can reduce the sauce using the Sauté setting of your Instant Pot, with the lid off. Add flour, arrowroot or gravy granules if you prefer to thicken the sauce but I don’t.
Conventional cooking (on the hob)
1. Heat oil in a heavy and wide-bottomed pot/cast iron casserole, slow cooker, whatever you have to hand. Fry the diced serrano ham over a medium-high heat until it starts getting a bit goldeny, stir a few times.
2. Season the diced chicken with salt and pepper, add it to the pot and stir well. Let it brown all over.
Turn the heat down a notch and add
the chopped garlic and onion (in Thermomix 5 seconds on speed 5) and
stir well, let it sweat for a little while and then add the mushrooms,
stir. Add the white wine and chicken stock and let it bubble for a few minutes, then add the
tomatoes and let it cook on a low-medium heat until the chicken is not only cooked through but also tender.
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….
The Feisty Tapas community is on fire lately, full of creative recipes, putting me to shame with my lack of energy as I learn a whole new concept for someone like me “pacing myself”. Basically, it means turning 42 years of “me” upside down and starting small, saving energy for the next day, the next hour even, constantly saving spoons in my energy bank. This Sticky Sesame Chicken, extra quick in an Instant Pot or the pressure cooker you may have, is an extra special dish for days when I really need to cook an easy dinner, the meat is so tender you’ll think you’re dining out rather than at home. Thanks Fran A!