i wasn’t about to write a food diary on Christmas day, so here’s a few-days-late recap of some things i made in the days leading up to free turkey.
Sunday: Whole chicken in the Instant Pot
This is a really easy meal that i usually do with a paprika-and-salt spice rub in the crock pot. i did it in the Instant Pot this time, and can absolutely confirm that the crock pot is the better way to go here.
More on “why” when we get to Tuesday’s Sausage and Peppers.
Monday: Korean Beef
Ha! This one was so bad that i actually lost it and started leaving angry comments on the woman’s recipe blog.
The first problem is that my blade roast was way too fatty, and it took me 20-30 minutes to cube it and remove all the fat. By the time i was done, about a third of that thirty dollar hunk was discarded as belts of white lard and sinew. Not great.
Next problem was that i got all the way through the recipe, and at the moment i need to set the Instant Pot, the author says “put it on medium.” There is no medium setting on an Instant Pot. It’s either low or high.
Spazzing a bit, i read her pre-ramble, and saw that she said “put it on high.” But in the comments, some ladies had reached the same point i had in a panic, and the author said “low should be be fine.” What the what??
i took her to task in the comments section, not only for the hugely long prep time (one hour to get everything into the pot), but for screwing up the settings, AND for not editing her recipe even as multiple people pointed out the error.
i think what happened is that she took a crock pot recipe, and changed it into an Instant Pot recipe (and may not even own an Instant Pot) just to get more hits on her site. Pretty skeezy.
To add insult to injury, the food was not good. It tasted like beef. Sauce, such as it was, could barely be detected. To coin a phrase from the immortal Street Cents, this one’s fit for the pit.
Tuesday: Sausages and Peppers
This recipe looks great in the pictures… slightly blackened peppers and sausages. Yum. Just know that the chef did NOT cook this in an Instant Pot to attain those pictures.
Here’s the deal with the Instant Pot: it has its strengths and weaknesses, like any other applicance. It doesn’t obliterate food like a crock pot does, but it DOES cook food by essentially boiling it. So if you want sausages that are boiled and grey and look like they came out of a Wallace and Gromit special, use the Instant Pot.
This recipe would be best suited to a 19×13″ baking pan in the oven, with some oil. It needs to be bRoiled, not boiled. The Instant Pot didn’t even save any cooking time, which is the entire point of the device.
So! Sausages and Peppers: yes. Sausages and Peppers in an Instant Pot: HELL to the naw.
Wednesday: Company Christmas party at the Pour House
We were given a prix fixe (French for “fixed pricks”) menu beforehand, so i was able to plan my day. i definitely wanted the fried chicken, for there is no better food on Earth, but i also didn’t want thighs that make a balloon noise as they rub together when i walk. So i had a light salad for lunch to make a calorie allotment for that fried chicken.
In the end, it was the after-meal slider that sent me over the calorie edge. But i didn’t overeat as badly as i might have. 50 calories over. No sweat.
Thursday: Chili in the Instant Pot
The couple that runs this food blog had all sorts of wild suggestions for how to prepare and cook an Instant Pot chili, which included (but were not limited to):
– adding cocoa powder and fish sauce
– straining the beef midway through browning
– putting the tomato sauce on top of the beef before pressurizing, but not mixing the two together.
All in all, the recipe made a flavourful chili with good consistency … i’m just not sure how crazy i was about the actual flavour. i might try this again, adding the optional vinegar at the end to “change the flavour profile,” as they put it.
Friday: Beef Stew
We had Cheryl’s dad over Friday night, and she revisited that beef strew recipe that she had already had so much success with the week before. Once again, this required me to excise an ungodly amount of fat and beef knuckles from the blade roast while cubing it.
This is all because i bought the last two roasts at the grocery store, which had been rejected by all the other shoppers before me. Hopefully next time, i’l get a better cut.
True to form, Cheryl’s dad had already eaten before arriving, but we all enjoyed the stew regardless, as much as we had done the first time.
Saturday through Now:
Turkey and gravy and mashed potatoes and stuffing and Ferrero Rochers and Lindor chocolates and Mary Brown’s and butter chicken kathi rolls and Hot Tamales and every other forbidden fruit from the Tree of Knowledge That You Are Fat.
My weight is holding, but she cannae take much more, Cap’n. Looking forward to resuming our food routine in a couple of days.