Whether you are cooking under pressure to get a meal on the table on a busy week night …or are literally Pressure Cooking…The recipes I am including today are recipes that can be made in a pressure cooker OR a slow cooker. They are adaptable to both ways of cooking.
Have you ever laid in bed in the early morning hours and thought about food? I did that this morning! I was thinking about the porcupine meat balls that my grandmother used to make for me….and the more I thought about it, the more I knew I would be preparing these little balls of meat and rice!
No wonder my hips look like little meat balls!
Seriously, pressure cooking seals in flavors and results in healthier eating.
I think that is written down somewhere…..;)
Have you ever used a pressure cooker? Both my Grandmothers, My Mother, Mother-in-Law, Sister-in-Law and two of my Aunts have/were using Pressure Cookers for a good percentage of their meal prep.
I loved hearing the pressure regulator noise…hiss hiss hiss….as it rocked atop the lidded pot on the stove …and the smell of the food was amazing! I am like Pavlov’s classical conditioning theory…I salivate whenever I hear certain sounds!
I know…I am weird like that!
Manufacturers have made electric pressure cookers, which make pressure cooking even easier. It is a lot like a slow cooker on steroids. 🙂
I own both a stove top and an electric pressure cooker and I like working with both. Many people are concerned about explosions with so much pressure building up…but they are really safe when you are following the directions.
Let me tell you that when you are wanting to serve Mexican Food with Pinto Beans….your friend is definitely the pressure cooker. Dry Beans take a long time to cook and get tender….in a pressure cooker it is a breeze!
The pressure cooker allows one to quickly get dinner on the table ….you put ingredients in the pressure cooker and while it is cooking, you can set the table and toss a salad and dinner is served in a matter of minutes.
The slow cooker (I have two of these babies) allows you to put the ingredients in the slow cooker before you go to work and have dinner ready when you return home.
Both methods are time savers in this busy world we live in….;)
So my porcupine meat ball recipe is below, and I make them all the time in the pressure cooker.
Another favorite of mine is Turkey Sloppy Joes! I have modified this recipe using ground turkey and honey rather than ground beef and brown sugar.
Chicken marsala! I really like this recipe. When I go to an Italian restaurant, this is a favorite to order, although I believe my recipe tastes just a bit better…but I am most likely prejudiced.:)
And finally, Black Bean Wraps with Mango and Pineapple Salsa….healthy eating at its best!
All four printable recipes are below: Let me know if you try them and if you like cooking with pressure cookers or slow cookers…or both!
- 1 1/2 pound ground beef
- 1/2 cup of rice (uncooked)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup of finely chopped onion
- 1 can of condensed tomato soup (10.5 ounce)
- 1/2 cup of water
- Combine the ground beef, rice, salt, pepper and onion in a medium bowl. (don't overmix or your meatballs will be tough)
- Shape into small balls...I usually make them the size of a 50 cent piece. (gosh, haven't seen that coin in a long time)
- Sometimes if I have time, I will brown the balls in a little hot oil before putting them in the pressure cooker...but it is not necessary. You can just put the balls directly in the pressure cooker raw.
- Add the soup and the water to the bottom of the pressure cooker. You don't have to mix.
- Add the meat balls, close the lid tightly and cook for about 10 minutes.
- Allow the pressure to go down and open the lid to a bubbly mixture of goodness.
- To adapt the recipe to a slow cooker....complete all the steps, but place in a slow cooker and cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours.
- One more note....if the balls do not hold together, it is not a problem....in fact sometimes I like them to not be formed into balls...the flavor distribute all through the meat...so good.
- Serve with a garden salad, and/or a veggie and you have a complete meal.
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 6 small boneless chicken breasts cut in half (2 pounds)
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 cup Marsala wine or any dry red wine
- 1 teaspoon chicken base
- 1 cup of water
- 16 ounces mushrooms, either sliced or cut in half (depending on the size of the mushroom)
- 2 tablespoons corn starch mixed into 1/4 cup of milk
- Add the oil and butter to the pressure cooker and heat to a high heat
- Dust the chicken breasts with the flour, salt and pepper
- Brown on all sides in the cooker
- Pour in 1/2 cup of the Marsala, reserving the other half cup
- Add the chicken base and the water and mushrooms
- Securely lock on the lid and set the cooker on high for 10 minutes
- Move off the butner and let the pressure go down
- Release the lid and remove
- Add the remaining Marsala wine and the corn starch mixed with milk.
- Stir constantly until the sauce has thickened.
- Add more salt and pepper if needed.
- Serve over pasta or with a side of mashed potatoes as I like to do.
- If using a slow cooker, brown the chicken in the hot oil and butter before adding to the slow cooker.
- Cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 4-6 hours. At the end of cooking, remove the chicken to a platter and put the sauce in a saucepan and thicken. Pour over the chicken.
- I like to use baby bella mushrooms because of the rich flavor, although I have used white button mushrooms.
- Chicken base is usually found near the chicken broths at your grocery. I like the Better than Bouillon brand because there is less salt. You can also use your own home made chicken stock or the canned chicken stock.
- 1 1/2 pounds of lean ground turkey
- 1 can tomato sauce (15 ounces)
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder or minced garlic clove
- 1 tablespoon onion powder or chopped onion
- 2 large red bell peppers (chopped)
- Combine all ingredients in a pressure cooker (or a slow cooker)
- If in a pressure cooker...cook for 5 minutes, remove from heat and let cooker cool down before removing the lid.
- If cooking in a slow cooker, cook on low for 4-6 hours.
- Because some turkey is injected with water, you might find the sloppy joes really sloppy with too much liquid. Remove as much as needed to get the right consistency.
- Serve on whole wheat bun or roll of your choice.
- Add sliced tomato for garnish or what ever you choose...Dill pickle? Slice of Avocado?
- 1 cup dried black beans
- 1 1/2 cups fat free low sodium vegetable broth
- 1 cup water
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- salt to taste
- 12 low sodium whole grain wraps
- 1 mango peeled and seeded
- 10 pineapple chunks
- 1//4 cup diced red onion
- 2 tablespoons diced green chile peppers
- 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup of dried black beans (cooked with 3 cups of water in pressure cooker for 15 minutes or in a pot on top of the stove for about 2 1/2 hours or until tender ...or in a slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours) You can use canned black beans but the caloric intake will be different.
- When beans are tender no matter the cooking method, add salt and cumin and oil.
- Cook for another 15 minutes and drain
- In a food processor add the mango, pineapple chunks, onion, green chile peppers, cilantro, lemon juice, cumin and black pepper and pulse 3-4 times or until ingredients are the desired consistency A fine dice is preferred.
- Cover and store in fridge until ready to use
- Use 1/4 cup black beans
- 2 tablespoons avocado
- 2 tablespoons fat free sour cream
- 2 tablespoons of Mango and Pineapple Salsa