Salmon with Warm Garlic Potato Salad

Along my Instant Pot/Quick Cooker journey I’m finding more and more recipes that I want to try and when I came across this one for salmon, I was sure it wouldn’t work! Well, we were all blown away at the flavor and consistency of the salmon and I don’t think I’ll cook it any other way again!

When I was thinking about how to cook the salmon, I knew resting on the trivet in the bottom wouldn’t be best because I didn’t want it to fall apart. It was fine when I was making the Salmon Curry because you want it in pieces, but I knew I wanted it to stay together so off to Amazon I went in search of an Instant Pot tray for steaming.

Nothing was doing it for me because most were bowls and I wan’t really wanting to spend money on it anyway and then I came across a recipe for steamed dumplings in an IP and they used a Bamboo Steamer! Genius! And even better? I have one tucked away in the basement. Now, I’ve owned this bamboo steamer for at least 20 years and have used it exactly one time. I got it because I saw an episode of Martha Stewart Living where she made a meal in it and it looked like one of the most elegant thing I had ever seen, so of course I purchased one immediately! Clearly the inspiration to use it fizzled out soon thereafter! Now just to see if the steamer I have would fit!?!?!

I had to stop home at lunch and when I got there, I ran down to the basement hoping that’s where it was and that I didn’t give it away thinking I’d have no further need for it! Thankfully it was right where I thought it was! I placed it in the Quick Cooker and it fit PERFECTLY! And last night it worked like a charm and now I’m excited to see what else I can use it for!

To being, I placed the potatoes in the bottom of the Quick Cooker. I found this great bag of multi-colored small potatoes at Aldi.

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Then I added the water and butter. I placed a lettuce leaf in the bamboo steamer and the salmon on top. Then I sprinkled the salmon salt, pepper and paprika and then topped it with the parsley and lemon zest.

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Into the Quick Cooker it went and we were off! (Have I mentioned how much I’m loving having a pressure cooker???)

When the cooking process was complete, I removed the bamboo steamer and added in the peppers and spinach mix.

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I cut the salmon into portions… look at how evenly it cooked!

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Then we plated it up, lit the candles, poured the wine and said grace! BTW, I’m LOVING how the multi-color potatoes look in this recipe!

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If you have a bamboo steamer, pull it out and give it a try! You’ll be so happy you did!

 

Salmon CaloriesSalmon with Garlic Warm Potato Salad
Serves 4

1 1/4 pounds small potatoes (I found a bag with
purple, red and yellow potatoes)
4 teaspoons butter, divided
1 cup water
salt and pepper
16 ounces salmon
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 tablespoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
1 large green leaf lettuce leaf
4 garlic cloves, pressed
1 red bell pepper, diced
4 cups spinach & arugula mix

  1. Put the potatoes in the bottom of the Quick Cooker. Add the water and 2 teaspoons butter. Sprinkle salt and pepper on top and place the trivet over the potatoes.
  2. Lay the lettuce leaf in the bottom of the bamboo steamer and place the salmon filet on top. Rub the top of the salmon with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and paprika. Top with parsley and lemon zest. Place the steamer on the trivet in the Quick Cooker.
  3. Close the Lid, making sure the steam valve is in the sealing position. Press Custom, then adjust the time to 3 minutes. Press start.
  4. When finished, press the steam release button to release the pressure.
  5. Remove the bamboo steamer and trivet and press Cancel. Set the Quick Cooker to Sear and press start. When the potatoes begin to sizzle, add the garlic and cook, stirring, until the potatoes are softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the remaining butter and season with salt and pepper. Smash the potatoes with the Mix ‘N Chunk to the desired consistency.
  6. Press Cancel. Add the red pepper and greens to the potatoes and stir until wilted, 1-2 minutes. Divide the salmon and potato salad among serving plates.

Enjoy!

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Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. Colleen Finley is an independent advanced director for Pampered Chef. She earns a commission by linking to products she uses and trusts. If you purchase a product through her website link, your cost will be the same, and Colleen will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us enrich lives, one meal and one memory at a time!

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Sweet Potato Avocado Toast

I came across this last week on Instagram and knew I had to try it! I was hesitant in the past because somehow each morning I manage to make myself run late, especially when I try to make breakfast!

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Then Leslie from Balanced-Life-Leslie shared how she makes it and I was sold! It’s so so easy so now there are no excuses!

I take two sweet potato slabs and poke a few holes in them with a fork. Then I microwave them for 2 minutes. I transfer them to a boiler-safe pan and rub the tops with ghee. Then I broil them for 3-4 minutes until browned. I top it with some avocado mash and an egg. Perfection!

To get Leslie’s recipe, click HERE!

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Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. Colleen Finley is an independent advanced director for Pampered Chef. She earns a commission by linking to products she uses and trusts. If you purchase a product through her website link, your cost will be the same, and Colleen will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us enrich lives, one meal and one memory at a time!

Classic Sausage & Peppers

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A friend of mine shared this recipe with me and I made a little twist by making my own sauce (or gravy) for it. Of course, a jarred marinara would work perfectly too but I like to control my ingredients as much as possible!

This meal comes together so fast due to three kitchen tools that are a necessity! The Simple Slicer, Quick Slice and Quick Cooker. There seems to be a theme there: simple and quick!

I wanted to surprise Bill with this meal when he got home and one of my favorite things to do for him is to have him walk through our front door and smell something delicious! Mission accomplished!

As soon as I arrived home from work, I started the sauce. It’s so easy with just 5 ingredients!

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As it simmered, I got started on the onions and peppers.

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Then I seared the sausage.

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Then everything went it and the pressure was on! Bill loved it just as I knew he would and I’m confident that this recipe is going to be repeated A LOT!

Enjoy!

 

Screen Shot 2018-10-27 at 11.56.47 AMClassic Sausage & Peppers
Serves 8

1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 garlic cloves, pressed
2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning Mix
4 bell peppers, sliced
1 medium white onion, sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
32 oz sweet Italian sausage

  1. In a heavy saucepan, combine the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, garlic and Italian Seasoning Mix. Bring to a boil, then reduce to low and let simmer until you’re reading to put it into the Quick Cooker.
  2. Using the Simple Slicer, slice the onion. Using the Quick Slice, slice the peppers. Set both aside.
  3. Set the Quick Cooker to Sear and add the oil. When it starts to shimmer, add half of the sausages and brown for 5 minutes without moving. Turn and brown an additional five minutes. Remove the sausages from the Quick Cooker to a plate. Repeat with the remaining sausage.
  4. Reset the Quick Cooker to Sear and add the onions and peppers. Sear, tossing occasionally for 3 minutes. Press Cancel.
  5. Return the sausages to the Quick Cooker and pour the simmering sauce over the top. Stir to combine.
  6. Cover and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to “sealing.” Press Custom and adjust the time to 8 minutes.  Press Start.
  7. When the timer beeps, you can manually release the steam or let it naturally release and keep warm until ready to serve.
  8. When ready to serve, remove the sausages and slice. Return the sausages to the Quick Cooker and stir to combine.

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Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. Colleen Finley is an independent advanced director for Pampered Chef. She earns a commission by linking to products she uses and trusts. If you purchase a product through her website link, your cost will be the same, and Colleen will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us enrich lives, one meal and one memory at a time!

Guacamole Frankenstein

I was invited to a neighborhood Halloween party for the kids and was assigned “guacamole.” The host said, “You’re doing the guacamole coming out of the pumpkin.” Well, that’s been done for the last few years so I immediately hopped online and googled “Halloween Guacamole.”

A lot of pics came up and most were the usual pumpkin-vomiting guacamole. Then I came across the Guacamole Frankenstein and I was sold! Here is what I ended up with:

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As soon as I finished, I felt that he looks more like a hockey player than Frankenstein so go ahead and blame my upbringing for that one!

Instead of making the guacamole myself, I opted for store-bought for one single reason: I knew I could leave it out for several hours and it wouldn’t brown. It was a party and I didn’t want to have to babysit it. I used green olives with pimento centers and eggplant skins for his hair, eyebrows and stitches.

I mounded the guacamole on the platter and smoothed it into the shape I wanted with a spatula. I used a knife to make his mouth and then I took a large spoonful of guacamole and slid it out to make his nose, then smoothed it into place.

I wasn’t sure how the kids would feel eating his head but they dove right in and didn’t have any problems! Happy Halloween!

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Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. Colleen Finley is an independent advanced director for Pampered Chef. She earns a commission by linking to products she uses and trusts. If you purchase a product through her website link, your cost will be the same, and Colleen will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us enrich lives, one meal and one memory at a time!

Halloween Cookie Cutters

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Whether you’re having a party, making a gift, or just having fun in the kitchen, the Halloween Cookie Cutters are the cutest way ever to get little ghouls and boys cooking (see what we did there?)

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These seven darling cutters were tested and approved by kids and include a vampire, skull, mummy, owl, monster, scarecrow (which I totally thought was a witch!), and ghost.  They measure 3½” diameter and make 3″ cookies.

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The cutters snap together for easy storage and they are dishwasher-safe.

Whenever I am using a recipe that calls for cookie cutters, I always default to this recipe for a lot of reasons.  First, it works EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. Second, the dough doesn’t need to be refrigerated so you are good to go as soon as you make it. Lastly, it holds the impressions of the cutters really, really well. And of course, it takes great!

Do you need these? Get them here: SHOP MY KITCHEN!

Want to see me making them?  Check out this video!

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Do you have these? Show me what you’re making!
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Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. Colleen Finley is an independent advanced director for Pampered Chef. She earns a commission by linking to products she uses and trusts. If you purchase a product through her website link, your cost will be the same, and Colleen will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us enrich lives, one meal and one memory at a time!

Pumpkin Chipotle Chili

Once I really started cooking, I stopped buying a lot of convenience foods because I wanted to be authentic and make everything myself. Yes, overachiever… table for one. But then I remind myself that most people are just trying to get something on the table each night.

IMG_5600Last week when I was in Aldi, I came across some sauces that I found interesting and this was one of them! When I brought it home and showed it to Bill, his reaction was that of a nine-year-old as he turned up his nose and loudly said, “Ewwwwww!” It might have been in that moment that I knew I had a winner! (Both with the sauce and my soul mate).

I wasn’t sure what I was going to use it for until yesterday while I was eating my lunch and reading some food blogs that I came across a recipe for Pumpkin Chili. That’s when I knew what I’d use it for and I was excited to get home and give it a try!

Of course when I got home, my ground turkey was a solid mass of frozeness. So I hopped back online and researched how to thaw and cook the ground beef in my new Quick Cooker! (BTW, I’m really loving this thing and I never saw myself embracing it the way I have!)

After adding the trivet and some beef stock instead of water, I put in the frozen hunk of ground turkey on top of the trivet, set it to Chicken/Poultry and adjusted the time to 20 minutes. Off it went and when it was done, the ground turkey was perfectly cooked! I chopped it up with my Mix ‘N Chop, then drained it.

IMG_5602I set the Quick Cooker to saute and added the chopped onion and got it started and cooked it a minute or two until it started to soften.  Then I mixed back in the ground turkey. This will be the way I do my frozen ground meats from here on out. I used to thaw them in the microwave and that always ended up not great. It was overcooked in some spots and completely raw in others. Yuck! This was cooked perfectly and evenly throughout.

IMG_5603Next went in the red pepper (I’ll use green next time for more color contrast), beans, tomatoes (undrained) and the sauce. I gave it a quick stir and then set it to cook on the Stew/Chili setting for 8 minutes. I let it release on its own and then it automatically kicks into the Keep Warm setting (I LOVE LOVE LOVE that feature!) And it was absolutely perfect when Bill got home!

He loved it! (As I knew he would!) After he had eaten about half of it, I asked him if he liked the flavor. Then I asked him what he thought it tasted like? He wasn’t sure so I confessed and told him what I had used and he was genuinely impressed!

IMG_5613And then he ask that I make it again!  Guess I better run back to the store and get a few more bottles before it’s gone for the season!

I hope you try this recipe and let me know how you like it! And what was great is that most of these things (aside from the sauce) are usually what’s on hand so it’s easy for a weeknight and even easier in the pressure cooker!

 

 

Screen Shot 2018-10-24 at 1.42.58 PMPumpkin Chipotle Chili
Serves 12

2 pounds ground turkey
1 cup white onion, chopped
1 24oz jar Pumpkin Chipotle Pasta Sauce
1 cup red pepper, chopped
1 15oz can black beans, drained
1 15oz can cannellini beans, drained
1 14 oz can petite diced tomatoes, undrained
toppings of your choice

  1. Turn your instant pot to the Sear/Saute setting. Add in the ground turkey and break it up with the Mix ‘N Chop. Brown it for a couple minutes and then add in the onion and saute until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. (If you’re using ground beef you may have to drain off grease). Press Cancel.
  2. Add in the sauce, red pepper, black beans, cannellini beans, and tomatoes and stir to combine.
  3. Cover and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to “sealing.” Set pressure cooker to Stew/Chili and adjust the time to 8 minutes.  Press Start.
  4. When the timer beeps let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes (or more, if you have time). When you are ready to eat, manually release any remaining steam and remove the Lid.
  5. Stir the chili and then season to taste.
  6. Ladle into bowls and serve topped with desired toppings. This chili tastes better as leftovers than it does the day of! Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week. This chili would also freeze well. Freeze in airtight containers for up to 3 months.

Enjoy!

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Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. Colleen Finley is an independent advanced director for Pampered Chef. She earns a commission by linking to products she uses and trusts. If you purchase a product through her website link, your cost will be the same, and Colleen will automatically receive a small commission. Your support is greatly appreciated and helps us enrich lives, one meal and one memory at a time!