Tag Archives: Recipes

Lesson 1366 – Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Barbecued Ribs

Okay another pressure cooker recipe. This time my husband, Marc and son, Griffin decided to make ribs in the cooker. They made this decision in part based on this pressure cooker ribs video. Combine that video with the fact ribs were on sale at our local grocery store, and by watching me they knew that no one was going to die using the pressure cooker anytime soon and it was a done deal.

The recipe calls for you to braise the ribs in apple cider and vinegar for 32 minutes at high pressure in the cooker. Then you take them out of the pressure cooker, put them on a baking sheet, cover them with barbecue sauce and bake for 15 minutes. Continue reading



Filed under Recipes, Tiny house cooking

Lesson 1361 – Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Baked Ziti experience

We’ve been continuing to use our pressure cooker (my kids think of it as our evil experiment every time they hear the escaping steam whistle.) This time we made Baked Ziti Florentine.

In a nutshell, I sauteed the onions in the pot (this seems to be a common first step in a lot of the recipes, but that’s okay, pretty much everything is better with onions in it.) I added red sauce and chicken broth (which will create the steam later on) and when it came to a boil, I added spinach and basil and waited until they wilted. Then I added the pasta.

And here’s where I made a mistake. Because we had 8 people for dinner that night, I doubled the recipe. (I always alter recipes when I cook, a little more of this, a little less of that.) That meant I used 2 pounds of ricotta cheese mixed with egg and Parmesan cheese. The directions said to layer it on top of the mixture. Let’s just say that 2 pounds was too much. Apparently I created such a seal on the top of the food with the cheese mixture that I never got the pot to high pressure. We kept waiting and waiting and waiting but we never saw steam come out. Continue reading

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Lesson 1356 – Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Pot Roast experience

It all started off with a simple question on my Facebook page – if you had a tiny kitchen (I had my “someday” tiny house in mind) what are the things that you would absolutely have in it?

People talked about coffee machines, stoves, fridges, and crock pots. Several people mentioned pressure cookers. This came as a bit of a surprise to me because I had always equated pressure cookers with grandmothers and personal injury. But so many people mentioned a pressure cooker that I decided to look into it. (Never met a challenge I didn’t like.)

Apparently I need to get out more, it seems that pressure cookers are the new black in the kitchen. But today’s pressure cookers are not your grandma’s cookers. Now they are electric and programmable.

And people RAVE about them. Continue reading


Filed under Recipes, Tiny house cooking

Lesson 1352 – A love poem to black truffles

I messed up. Yesterday’s post was supposed to be today’s post. I was supposed to cover recipes on Thursdays. Oh well, I’ll just put this week’s recipe post here.

This is a black truffle.


This is how much they cost (and yes you read that right.)


This is the tool you need to buy if you want to eat truffles. I didn’t bring my reading glasses to the store with me and what I thought was $19.99 turned out to be $39.99 when I got home. The art of eating truffles is very expensive.


This is about $8 worth of truffle.


I scrambled eggs and added just a little bit of shredded Swiss cheese and then topped it all with the truffle slices.

This is heaven.



Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

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Filed under Recipes, Tiny house cooking

Lesson 276 – trying to find a deviled egg that we’d eat

Small confession here.

I’ve never met a deviled egg that I’ve liked. I mean, let’s be real, deviled eggs are nothing but egg flavored jello filled with that nasty smelling dry yolk stuff. (shudder even to think about it)

I know, I know, with having so many chickens in our life, you’d think that we would live on deviled eggs. And apparently you are not alone, you wouldn’t believe how many deviled egg plates I am now the proud owner of. I get them for Christmas, as gifts in return for eggs, at Easter, and in one case when the sun was shining on a summer afternoon. Continue reading


Filed under All things chickens, Backyard Chickens, Eggs, Everything Eggs, Holidays, Project Chickens before the Eggs, Recipes, The Family

Project Chickens before the Eggs – Lesson 138 – Deviled eggs? not in this house

At a recent yardsale I found this adorable chicken item.

It's the thought here that counts

It’s a deviled egg plate with a salt shaker. It’s missing the pepper shaker but it’s still cute.

I happily bought it home knowing that I would never, in this life time anyway, ever make or eat deviled eggs. Neither would any of my kids or husband.

It’s a texture thing in our house. Solidified egg- jello just doesn’t (literally) go down well. If I tried to make my kids eat a deviled egg, I had better have a bucket handy. ‘Nuff said.

I think I have the only kids in the entire world who actually don’t like eggs. Sure they’ll eat them when I hide them in foods (sausage-bread-egg-cheese casseroles are considered yummy) and will on occasion eat scrambled eggs if I use onions and (really good) cheddar cheese, but a fried egg? Soft boiled egg? A hard boiled egg? There is just no way.

I even got the following deviled egg recipe ideas from a friend of mine: Continue reading

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The 2009 Fabulous Food Network Magazine Challenge – Grilled Steak and Eggs with Beer-Molasses Sauce

Recipe 26 – Grilled Steak and Eggs with Beer-Molasses Sauce – page 133

41 recipes to go

I think that guys making their own bar-b-Que sauce is one of the surest ways to put them into a state of nirvana. Put beer into that sauce and you have someone who is very near to perpetual happy time.

For our return to the Fabulous Food Network Magazine challenge we jumped back in with Grilled Steak and Eggs with Beer-Molasses Sauce. (seemed a natural combination with our meat-eating teenaged boys and our egg-laying family hens)

First we (Marc) had to make the sauce. It’s a combination of butter, onion, garlic (yum right there) along with ketchup, molasses, apple cider, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, spices and larger style beer. (ah, there’s that magical ingredient). The recipe simmers for about 30 minutes on the grill and makes approximately 2 cups of sauce. Continue reading

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The 2009 Fabulous Food Network Magazine Challenge – Resurrected

Last summer we started a challenge where we were going to make every recipe in the June /July 2009 Edition of the Food Network Magazine. There are a total of 67 recipes listed in the index and we made it to 25.

We got a bit sidetracked by two family surgeries, one on Trevor to correct a broken nose born of a gymnastics vault where he decided to land on his face instead of his feet, and one for me to correct a knee born of, well, a life not lived sitting on the sidelines.

In talking to the kids about our plans for this summer more than one asked about “that food thing we did last year”. Unanimously we’ve all agreed to resurrect the challenge for this summer, to finish what we had started.

So even though it’s 2010 we are going to complete The 2009 Fabulous Food Network Magazine Challenge.

2009 June/July Food Network Magazine

Continue reading


Filed under School Vacations, The 2009 Fabulous Food Network Magazine Challenge, The Family

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Cookbook Review – Burn-down-the-house Baked Cod Wrapped in Bacon with Rosemary

In an ongoing effort to review recipes from Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Cookbook, the other night I made the Baked Cod Wrapped in Bacon with Rosemary.

Consider this review a cautionary tale.

The recipe itself couldn’t be easier. You take thick slices of a cod (or a nice firm white fish) dredge it through olive oil, chopped Rosemary (yum) and sea salt, wrap it in a good smoked bacon and then cook it.

What could go wrong eh?

Jamie Oliver's Baked Cod Wrapped in Bacon with Rosemary

Continue reading


Filed under Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution, Recipes, Teaching kids

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Cookbook Review – Sizzling Beef with Scallions and Black Bean Sauce

Last night, based on a friend’s suggestion, we made the Sizzling Beef with Scallions and Black Bean Sauce (page 69, Jamie’s Food Revolution).

When I say we made it, what I really mean is that my husband Marc and my son Logan (13) made it. You see this was a test. Sure I can cook (when you make the decision to have 6 children, you either learn how to cook or you go broke) but Marc is more of the chicken nuggets, spaghetti and jarred sauce kind of cook. Go ahead and ask him about his love affair with canned cheese (you think I’m kidding?)

Part of Jamie’s Food Revolution is teaching people how to cook. With real ingredients. So I put the whole Revolution to the test, if Jamie could get Marc to cook a tasty healthy dinner that actually had flavor then I would give Oliver, the “well done” he deserved.

I went to the grocery store, got the ingredients needed for the recipe, dropped them off at the house and left to do my hour of exercise at the gym. You can do it, I assured my newly anointed cooks. Marc panicked for a few minutes before he and Logan settled down to prepare the pepper, rice, meat, and cilantro. (just as a personal aside, when I die, I want to be buried in a field of cilantro). Continue reading

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