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Reviews: Momofuku, America’s Test Kitchen, Pressure Cooking for Dummies

This week my Aunt Shirley, better known as Sher Sher, passed away.  It was a sad time, but at the same time she was not well and we were glad to not see future suffering.  She will be missed and our time of sadness will continue a while, but her time of joy has come.

One of the ways we comfort each other in times of sadness, sickness, and new birth is food, lots of food.  Being from the south means you are guaranteed fried chicken, biscuits, sweet tea, and usually deviled eggs. Not to mention lots of pie. This week was no different.  Lots of “down home” goodness, cooked and brought with love.  Thank you to everyone who took such good care of our family!

This week’s Reviews:

Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

The Process: For a full explanation visit this page

1. Sit down, relax and plan 4-5 meals (or pick some meals from here, that’s what this is here for.  I’ll pick so you don’t have to)

2. Make a grocery list and stick to it!!!! This saves time and money

3. Do the shopping-aim for one trip (My British friends will need to make several trips)

4. Bring Back Dinner and enjoy.  Remember that there is such an opportunity to build friendships and family when gathered around a meal.  Even if you mess it all up.  So, just relax, experiment, and have fun.  Don’t forget to include your friends.

The Meals:

noodles in 3

Time: 30-45 minutes.  Time varies based on what you choose to add to these awesome noodles.

Ease: simple

Review: For Christmas I got a gift card to a book store and bought the Momofuku book. I have wanted that book for so long! This is the first thing I tried and I love this recipe.  I will keep the ginger scallion sauce on hand.  It was easy to make and very tasty. I used Udon noodles because it is what I had on hand and we also topped ours with cauliflower, cabbage and mushrooms.  

Tips: Don’t let Asian food intimidate you.  This is a great starter recipe. Remember to have fun and be flexible.  You start with the sauce add noodles and from there it is up to you.  David Chang gives some suggestions for toppings, but this is truly up to you.  Customizable.  PS-read the book, it is very interesting.

marinera chicken e

Time: 30 minutes

Ease: Simple, once I overcame my fear over using the pressure cooker!

Review: For Christmas I received an electric pressure cooker!  It was a little scary at first, but I found a great book by America’s Test Kitchen that I highly recommend.  The charts and tips are worth the cost alone.  One thing they do is tell you why it works, I find this to be very helpful and allows me to feel more confident in my attempt.

The link is to a blog by America’s Test Kitchen, but it is basically a jar of marinara over chicken.  This could be done in the oven as well, but I found the sauce to be richer after cooking in the pressure cooker.  If you have one you should definitely pull it out and give it a try.

minestrone for dummies

Time: 20 minutes in pressure cooker, allow more time if on stovetop.

Ease: Simple

Review: mehh.  This is the first review I’ve done where I just thought it was “ok”.   I felt from reading the recipe that it might not develop enough flavor, but since I’m new to pressure cooking I decided to give it a try.  I was right.  I thought that the soup was a little bland.  That said, it wasn’t unpleasant and the vegetables cooked nicely.  I will probably play around with the leftovers though.  If you make this try adding some tomato paste, extra seasonings etc. to your own personal tastes.

BBQ Chicken in the Slow Cooker

Photo 6

Time: 6-8 Hours in slowcooker or cook in oven until chicken reaches temp.

Ease: Simple

This can’t get any simpler if you are in a hurry.  You have a couple options: 1. a bottle of your favorite BBQ Sauce, hey no one is judging or 2. your own favorite homemade BBQ recipe.  I like Emeril’s if I’m going to make it.   So, just toss in chicken breasts, BBQ sauce and turn on the crockpot and forgot about it.  You may need to add water if you BBQ sauce is too thick.  When you get home, just chop it all up and serve on a rolls-easy peasy!

I hope you have a wonderful week and remember to enjoy time at the dinner table.  It can be easy to fall into a pattern of just slapping something down and filling the bellies.  I encourage you to remember to connect with each other and don’t forget to set the table!


Photos may be used, but please link back to this blog and credit Lisa Burbach, recipes are links to existing recipes and I have no ownership of recipes other than the ones I Have created.  Thank you.

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