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2018: Happy New Year!

Hey y'all!

I pray that the New Year has found you all happy and healthy!

Do you all do the traditional "New Year" things like making sure your house is clean, all laundry is done and eat greens and black eyed peas?

For most of us southerners, this is tradition. We do it faithfully. Guess what? This. Year. I. Did. Not.

I've never frantically ran around trying to get things done anyway, but I would try to at least have the house in order when the New Year hits. This year though, we got back in town on the 30th. We were tired. On New Year's Eve we went to breakfast with friends and did a little grocery shopping. Then we rested. And all of my sisters decided my house was the place to bring in the New Year. The kitchen and dining areas were clean!

I do, however, eat my greens (collards for me) and black eyed peas. I fell into the electric pressure cooker craze in 2017. I actually bought the thing in 2015 and had never used it! I didn't get one of the top brands either. I found one at Aldi for like 40 bucks and it has been working like a champ. So, in the spirit of being jet lagged, I vowed to cook almost everything in the pressure cooker because I wasn't interested in being in the kitchen all day. And guess what? I was still in the kitchen all day! I need to invest in another one to save time!

I cooked my collard greens and my black eyed peas in the pressure cooker. Both were good. I should have used a little more water with the peas and maybe a little less liquid with the greens. 

My goal for 2018 is to use the electric pressure cooker more and share ideas and recipes with you. I can't find the model online for the one I have, but I'll link to some popular ones below. (I will earn a small commission if you purchase through these links).




Pressure Cooker Collard Greens
I used a recipe from The Foodie Eats and modified it slightly.


Author: The Foodie Eats
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Ingredients
2 lbs. Shredded Collard Greens
1 Smoked Turkey Wing
6 Cups Chicken Broth
1/4 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes

Instructions
Add all ingredients to Instant Pot - turkey first. (You may need to pack in the greens.)
Set manual time for 60 minutes.
After cooking is complete, quick release pressure.
Mix well - so that meat falls of the bones.
Serve and enjoy!

*Notes*
If you use low sodium broth, then add 2 tsp. salt. But if you use regular broth, there is no need for salt.

*I added additional seasonings and they were needed (for my taste buds). I added garlic powder, onion powder, and Mrs. Dash table blend.*

The greens were tender in an hour! I ended up transferring them to a pot on the stove because 1. I needed to put the peas on, and 2. I had forgotten to put the red pepper flakes in. This gave me a chance to adjust the seasonings as needed. I let them cook for about 15 minutes more and then turned them off. 

I purchased collards that were already cut. I like them small, not ripped in big shreds. I didn't feel like cutting greens up though! I can usually find small shredded greens from a local farm at Publix. I always wash them, even when they say they have been washed. Wash them again! I will definitely continue to cook my greens in the pressure cooker, making adjustments until I can get it right. These did the job. And Baby Magic loved them!

**UPDATE**
I've since made the collards again. I used 3 cups of water instead of the broth and added extra seasonings. I sauteed onions and garlic first, added the water and the smoked turkey wing and cooked at high pressure for 30 minutes. Then I added the greens and the seasonings (and a little sprinkle of sugar) and cooked at high pressure for 60 minutes. I preferred this way. My sister (who makes the best greens) even liked them.








Pressure Cooker Black Eyed Peas

This one, I kind of just winged it. I had pinned a few recipes, but none of them seemed like they would tickle my fancy. I eyeballed it so I don't have exact measurements.

Ingredients
1 bag of black eyed peas (dry)-no soaking needed
Olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 small piece of green bell pepper
1-2 pork ham hocks
seasonings of your choice (I used salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and Mrs. Dash)

Instructions
Rinse ham hocks and place in the pressure cooker basin. Cover with water.
Cook on high pressure for 30 minutes. You can quick release or let the pressure naturally release.
While ham hock is cooking, sort through your beans and rinse them. No soaking is required!
Once the ham hocks have finished, remove them from the pot and discard the liquid.
Set your pressure cooker to sear (or saute' or brown - depends on your cooker)
Add olive oil and saute' the onions until tender. 
Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.
Add the ham hocks, beans and seasonings to the pot and cover with water.
Stir  to combine.
Set manual time for 25 minutes (30 if you like them really soft)
Allow the pressure to naturally release

Enjoy!

The peas on top needed more liquid, but the bottom peas were fine!


Easy Peasy Baby Back Ribs

These are my new go to. This recipe comes from Alexandra's Kitchen and is DELICIOUS!


prep 

cook 

total 
yield 3

Ingredients

  • 1 rack of baby back ribs
  • kosher salt
  • freshly cracked black pepper
  • smoked paprika (if you can find it) or parika
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • Heavy duty foil, if you have it

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 275ºF.
  2. Rinse off the ribs and pat dry. Liberally coat the ribs with the kosher salt, pepper and the paprika. Pack on the cup of brown sugar.
  3. Lay out two sheets of foil slightly overlapping. Place ribs on top and close foil on all sides. Repeat two more times so that the ribs are covered in three good layers of foil. Place ribs on a sheet tray and place in the oven for 2½ hours. Note: When placing the ribs on the tray, try to place them meaty side down. It’s not critical but it makes for a crisper exterior.
  4. Remove tray from the oven. Let sit for one hour. Do not open the pouch during this hour.
  5. When ready to serve, reheat the ribs in the oven for about 15 minutes at 350ºF (this is assuming the ribs have not been refrigerated) or open the pouch, baste the ribs with the juices and place them under the broiler for five minutes.

The only thing I did differently was to remove the membrane from the back side of the ribs. I do this with any type of slab ribs.

Remove that membrane!






You also want to make sure you are properly cleaning and disinfecting your sink and work surfaces.

I also made Brazilian Cheesy Bread and a Pineapple Upside Down cake for my brother in law!






I pray that 2018 brings you all joy and nothing but happiness occurs!

XOXO
RoJo

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