A pressure cooker. A cold and snowy day with no school. Hearty food and good friends soon to become neigbours. Does a day get any better than that? Only if you add in rum punch it does….
Everything old is new again. I love when things come full circle…. especially something as time saving as this! My sister-in-law had us for dinner recently and made the most amazing Chinese meal. One dish in particular, really stood out for me. A soup made with carrots, ginger, onions and well, ridiculously tender pork ribs. The carrots were so sweet and incredible, I literally could not stop eating them. The meat on the ribs literally fell off the bone (okay, maybe I had one or two – I had to be polite and try them, didn’t I?) And the broth!! Oh my goodness, that broth! Of course, when food is that outstandingly delicious, I have to ask; “How did you make this”?
Well, since Anna is Chinese, her regional cooking comes naturally and easily for her – with much joy I might add. I think she enjoys feeding me as much as I do her – foodies are global! Anna has lovingly showed me many of her cooking methods, and I have willingly listened and learned. Thank you Anna! In her broken English, she showed me the “cooking machine” and listed the simple 5 ingredients she put in. Now, I’ve heard of pressure cookers, and I’m sure I’ve seen one at some point in my lifetime, but never did I expect such wonderful things from one! She then said “five teen meenit coooking time”. Translation – that this incredible meal (fall of the bone tender) was made in just 15 minutes. I was sold. I purchased a Pressure Cooker cook book the very next day, read it from cover to cover and a few days later was opening my brand new, very own “cooking machine”.
I experimented and made a Jamaican inspired vegetable curry for lunch. Since there was no meat in mine, I set the timer for 10 minutes. I cooked some rice and wok fried bok choy on the side. Dee-lish! And it went perfectly perfect with the Jamaican Rum Punch. Is a Jamaican themed lunch, on a snow day a good way to celebrate with new neigbours? Heck ya!
- 3 potatoes, cut into cubes
- 4 carrots, peeled and rough chopped
- 1 purple onion
- 3 big handfulls of green beans, cut in half
- 1 cup mushrooms (I used white), cut in half
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- 1 cup chopped collard greens
- 1 red pepper, seeded and cut into cubes
- handful washed whole (left on stems) cilantro – to be removed after cooking (let sit on top)
- 2-3 1 inch pieces fresh ginger
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp Jamaican curry powder or curry of choice
- 1 can tomatoes
- 2 cups vegetable or mushroom broth
Add all ingredients to pressure cooker. Cilantro set on top. Put on lid and bring to a boil. When steam starts to escape from top, put on the cute little steam lid, turn heat down to med/low and set timer for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, remove from heat and let sit until steam escapes through top – lid will not open until pressure of steam has been released. On mine, you can safely hold cute little steam lid up to release steam more quickly. If not, it takes about 10 minutes before it will open.
That’s it! Super quick, super easy, super yummy and…. because of the quick cooking method, many more of the nutrients are left intact! And so fast! If you don’t have a “cooking machine” of your own, go out and get one! I paid $49.99 for mine at Canadian Tire. It’s not a top end model, but it’s a good starter.
I almost forgot how much I liked snow days…. it’s been a while since we’ve had one – and even longer since we had one that was an ACTUAL snow day. For some reason, blizzards from my childhood felt far more dramatic than they do now. Is it just my perspective or something else? Who knows and honestly, who cares! I for one thoroughly enjoyed my snow day. This one started off perfect and ended perfect with wine and a chick flick with yet another great friend and neigbour! How lucky am I to have started AND ended the day with visits from friends?