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Thoughts & Cooking

Saturday | 16 January 2021 | La Quinta, California: Dear Readers: How are you doing? It has already been a very rough month, and I could not just continue this blog... oh, I baked a cake and went golfing... ignoring our nation under attack by her own citizens. The anti-Semitic and White Supremist signs, flags, and tattoos were so upsetting. Who raises these Orange-Kool-Aid-drinking COVIDIOTS? Too many questions. No answers. Praying for brighter times to come, with new leadership, and the promise of a vaccine in our future.

Maybe new Readers do not know The Lovely Lisa attended The George Washington University - virtually next-door to the White House - so we know the Capitol well, and are so saddened it was defiled in such an evil manner.

Our daily life - far from DC, and all the next round of expected riots - remains the same. Waiting. Exercising, cooking, eating, sleeping, not sleeping. Wondering. Worrying. Rinse. Repeat. We are still in pandemic lock-down. Confined. Social Distanced. See no one. Go no where. No notice from our health care plan of when we will be in line to receive our jabs.

I am keeping close contact with family and friends, trying new recipes, and trying to not listen to too much news. How are you coping? Please comment below.

Still having appetizers each evening
Half recipe of Instant Pot Vegetable Soup

A little late to the game, but decided it would be nice to have a pressure cooker for all the dried beans and pulses we I cook, and realized an Instant Pot was quite a bit cheaper and more versatile than just a pressure cooker. I've made a few things with the new machine, and am happy with the results. Can anyone recommend a good Instant Pot cookbook?

Another late-to-the-game product: we tried Zoodles ("noodles" made with zucchini spirals) for the first time. Wasn't good. Wasn't bad. The package was only $3 (Instacart), and claimed to serve four. I prepared the entire package (60 calories for the entire bag) on the stovetop, and there couldn't have been even 1.5 cups of shredded squash in the pan when ready to plate. The zoodles were served under a lamb-and-eggplant ragu from the freezer.

For My Runner, zoodles are not noodles... so I prepared Smoked Salmon Pasta the next night, served with roast carrots with dill, and arugula salad (from our CSA box). Our CSA box this week was loaded with dill, cilantro, parsley, chives, beets, radish, bok choy, kale, arugula, napa cabbage, lettuce and carrots.

A soufflé last tonight with a composed salad with the pretty beets (goat cheese and pistachios in a grainy-mustard vinaigrette) from the CSA box:

We are hanging-in-there; hope you are as well. It has been in the high 80's for the past several days - sunshine! Until my next update, I remain, your anxious correspondent.

17 thoughts

  1. Oregon’s numbers have been low, but with a case of superbug showing up in Portland, I think we will mask up anytime we leave the car. I have to limit news time, to attempt to minimize worrying. I’m so happy our daughter lets our two granddaughters see NO news. They will start back to private school 3 hours a day on Tuesday. They are so excited. We have them 2 days a week, and this homeschooling is not for the faint of heart.

  2. We are in Arizona for the winter where numbers are the highest in the nation. We mask up, go to Home Depot and Costco, do grocery pickup and stay home. We do have four friends who are also careful–we take turns cooking weekend dinners. My husband received his first dose of Moderna vaccine last Tuesday–he is 75–at a Medicine Shoppe pharmacy of all places. I am a conservative and have never been so ashamed of my political party as I have been in the last four years (I did not vote for trump in 2016 nor in 2020). The storming of the capitol at the behest of the President of the United States was so appalling, sad, and frightening. I have written countless emails to my senators and representatives who supported the President letting my opinion be known. I am weary, sad and disgusted.

  3. We are the same. Scott is cancer free, yeah, so our isolation has been extreme. Lots of cooking, too much tv and not enough exercise. Worst year ever. Still in shock after watching, live, the riot..anger, incredulous discusted. Praying for everyone’s future. Your souffle looks wonderful.

  4. We are also in. Like Linda, too much TV, not enough exercise, a lot of cooking and dish washing. Would love to wonder through a store. Was so shocked at the protest/riot. Angry that some people feel that behavior is acceptable. We’ve stopped watching news as well. Only Trump and Covid – over and over and over. Husband was able to get his first covid vaccine this past week for which we are thankful. Food on the table, roof over our heads, car to drive around the neighborhood and pick up groceries (delivered to car). Thankful for that. Enjoy your blog – helps remind me we are all “in the same boat” Thank you for that.

  5. For the best Instant Pot cookbook, try Pressure Luck. His original cookbook is a number one best seller and he is just coming out with another one that features lighter recipes. He also is very active on Facebook and has a website with many, many recipes. He is my main go-to site for recipes that can be depended on to really work. I also really like his writing style.

    1. We found Pressureluck YouTube videos very entertaining. But alas, I got rid of the Instapot because we didn’t like the texture of meats along with many other reasons.

  6. I get the majority of my instant pot recipes from food websites that I like. I’d suggest you check them for instant pot recipes. I like the suggestion of checking your public library for either paper or digital cookbooks. I have Pressure Luck cookbook and haven’t cooked anything from it yet. Check the author’s website (https://pressureluckcooking.com) and see if his recipes are to your liking. I have Milk Street Fast and Slow by Christopher Kimball and like it. I also have Melissa Clark’s Comfort in an Instant.

  7. RecipesInstantPot.com is what I found when I searched Instant Pot recipes. There are many many ones to choose from.

  8. Hi Terry! Love your recipes & enjoy reading about your new home. I have Dinner in an Instant by Melissa Clark. I also use the web & convert favorites to the Instant pot. Your Chinese Beef recipe turned out beautifully. For sure it is a difficult time for everyone. Respectfully, it would be wonderful if politics were left out of the discussion. It seems divisive and there’s just so much of it out there. Anyway, best to you & looking forward to some Instant Pot recipes!

  9. I like you am appalled at what happened on 1/6/2021. I thank my parents for raising me better. The hate that is being shown by so many in this country just leaves my husband and I sad and bewildered wondering what is coming next.

  10. I truly look forward to your “everyday” life blogs. They are sanity in a time of Trump and Covid and constant gloom and doom news coverage. No going out to restaurants, so I love seeing your meal creations and even trying some to supplement my own, which have become boring after all this time!

  11. I like you was disgusted by the capital invasion. I was so stunned as I watched it unfold on TV I couldn’t speak. The confederate flags, the anti Semitic and white supremacy signs, I was unable to even comprehend what was happening. I hope for a more peaceful future.

  12. I hope everyone that is decrying shameful behavior today also spoke up against the violence at the 2017 inauguration, 4 years of despicable Never Trump rhetoric, biased news reporting, and attacks on innocent family members , not to mention the violence that has roared on in the guise of BLM/Police brutality for almost a year (Portland). I may have also missed your fear & apprehension about the blatant censorship that is occurring daily. Silencing people is what happens in China, not our country. Just sayin…

  13. What’s the difference between an Instapot and a pressure cooker? I have an electric pressure cooker. The controls are much simpler, and it does anything the InstaPot will do, but I do have to tell it what to do: time and temperature.

  14. Hugs. We’re stuck too. My husband and I get our 2nd Moderna vaccine Feb. 1st. and pray for our future. Hope for good health, hope for a quiet enjoyment of life without constant chaos. My first grandchild is on his way. Yes, I have hope.

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