Wednesday, August 21, 2019

What We Ate: A Crock Pot, Instant Pot and Air Fryer Adventure!

A couple weeks ago, I decided to join the air fryer craze and bought myself a GoWise 3.7 quart with my rewards from BuyBuyBaby and my trusty 20% off Bed Bath and Beyond coupon. This means that I now have an Instant Pot, a crock pot AND an air fryer.  I used them all this past week and thought I would share my recipes!

One of the biggest misconceptions about these small appliances, in my opinion, is that you must love one with all your heart and never use the others again. Or your actual stove for that matter. I love food and I love to cook. I also love gadgets that make cooking good food easier. I personally will always have a crock pot. You can't convince me that the Instant Pot replaces it, because, well, it doesn't. An Instant Pot still as time to come to pressure and then cook the actual food. In the crock pot, that happens all day while I am at work. And sometimes, I like to come home and do nothing. But, I digress. The point of this post is to show you how I used all three contraptions in one week.

Sunday - Instant Pot Dulce de Leche Cheesecake
While out trying to find an air fryer to buy (I ended up ordering one), I found some Instant Pot accessories at Kohls.  I picked up a divided steamer and a 7" spring form pan.  And with new accessories comes new recipes! I actually used the recipe card that came with the spring form pan for a dulce de leche cheesecake. It was surprisingly easy and came out oh so good. I've decided that there's a good chance I will never eat cheesecake without dulce de leche again!

First I poured the entire can of sweetened condensed milk in one of my small cake pans.  I poured in one cup of water and sat the pan with the milk on the trivet. 

Then I made the cheesecake! I lined the bottom with parchment paper, added the crust and poured in the batter. The spring form pan sat on top of the pan with the sweetened condensed milk.

I made the cheesecake Sunday night and then we ate it Monday night.

I couldn't find the exact recipe online, but here is the recipe for the dulce de leche and the cheesecake. Just stack them and you're good to go!

Monday - Instant Pot Salmon with Sweet Potato Puree and Broccoli
This was another recipe card that came with the Instant Pot accessories. I didn't take photos of this one, but it was a really easy recipe! You simply peel and cube sweet potatoes and put them on the bottom. Then you add vegetable broth (the recipe called for a 1/2 cup, I upped it to one cup for coming to pressure) and then you put the broccoli in one portion of the steamer and then put a 4-oz cut of salmon in each of the other two portions. I seasoned the salmon and the broccoli with salt and pepper. You put the steamer on top of the potatoes and cook on high for 1 minute and quick release.

Salmon with Sweet Potato Puree and Broccoli
Aaron thought it was really good and I considered this a game changer and what really sealed my love for the IP.  I've used it a lot since I got it for Christmas, but I've mostly done soups and pastas.  I loved being able to do a simple, quick, healthy meal.

Tuesday - Basil Chicken in Coconut Curry Sauce in the Crock Pot
This is hands down one of my favorite comfort food recipes. I love making it in the crock pot. A few changes I've made to the recipe is that I use garlic and onion powder instead of chopping, simply for ease, and I don't add jalapenos.

Thursday - Chicken Cordon Bleu in the Air Fryer
As soon as I ordered my air fryer, I ordered the Skinnytaste Air Fryer cookbook. Basically, if Skinnytaste has a cookbook, I buy it. The only exception is the Fast and Slow cookbook. I didn't love that one. The One and Done Cookbook has some air fryer recipes, but not a ton. Amazon had the Air Fryer Cookbook on sale for $10, so I got it. This is my second recipe out of this book and, as usual, they've both been awesome.

Prepping the chicken.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Roll with Side Salad
I served the cordon bleu rolls with a side salad. I did have to make them in batches (batch of 3 and then a final batch of 4), so that took a little bit of time, but not bad. And clean up was still relatively easy. We both agreed that they were good and were going into the dinner rotation!

I had a fourth meal that I planned to use, but ended up having to work one night and we got takeout. Never fear, though, I made that recipe on Sunday! I've really enjoyed using my air fryer so far. And I think that, just like my crock pot and Instant Pot, it's a great tool added to my kitchen. But it doesn't replace everything. I still like to make casseroles and easy meals on the stove like Coconut Curry Shrimp.  Currently, the Instant Pot is the most useful, but my crock pot will always be #1 in my heart. You just can't beat coming home to a done dinner. Do you have any (or all) of these? Which is your favorite?!

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