Several months ago I took the plunge and bought the Instant Pot. Pressure cookers are no novelty to me. My mom has been using them for all the time I can remember, back to the days when we would have to search the kitchen for the circular metal topper before we could use our stovetop version and have to put it into the kitchen sink and dose with cold water to lower the pressure inside to even open it.
I’ve also been a long-time fan of the slow cooker having grown up with hearty stews made from ton cuts of deer, elk, or antelope meat that my dad had hunted during our years growing up in Montana.
And I eat rice and hard boiled eggs. Like a lot of Seattle’s techy throng, I subscribe to the excitement for intellectual cooking as typified by Sir Alton Brown however not quite the McGyver-esque zeal that propels me to make a smoker out of foil, terracotta planters, and wood chips I harvested from my last foray into the forests.
Nope, I’m a lazy cook. I like to understand enough to make choices like which cut of meat to speed the dollars on and which ones to troll the discount bins and throw in the slow cooker.
Oh, and I hate washing dishes. Or really, putting them away. Yeah I never minded filling the dishwasher or even sudsing up myself. But putting them away….ahhhh, man!
So after reading all the virtues of said Instant Pot (which my friend Kate and I both agree should be called Insta-Pot, because it’s so quick it needs to abbreviate the word. Ha!), I wanted to give it a go. Also, living in a much smaller space in the city, I was interested to see if I could get rid of my other slow cookers to settle on the One-To-Rule-Them-All!
Boy, have I been sold! So much so that I can often be heard selling its features to friends and family and have made a Pinterest board dedicated to recipes. I moved quickly from fresh hard boiled eggs every morning to whole chickens, frozen pork shoulder, lotion bars, and now cheesecake. I haven’t tackled yogurt or bread yet…but I’m getting there.
I’ve even now hosted a Pothead night to help my friends who hadn’t even unboxed their trendy purchase break the seal and start cooking. Which presented an interesting problem: I leverage plenty of other recipes across the Internet but there is one recipe that is uniquely our family’s, a second-generation Italian family’s loving legacy of our matriarch. Grandma Z’s spaghetti sauce. What to do about updating, storing, and posting that recipe to friends and family.
Well, enter the dust-covered lifestyle blog that I started many moons ago as an offshoot of my fiction blog. The outcomes of converting and creating new recipes can nicely land right here in addition to other important lessons of Pot-ter mastery: timing and toys. Sometimes it helps to know when you are putting meals together when to start up the Pot, when to fire up the broiler, and whether the metal or silicone heating basket might do best.
So to this end, I re-launch Style Just be, a lifestyle diary of discovery, experimentation, and dedication to promoting your own learning, creativity, and fun.