Get Out Those Kitchen Gadgets

September 17, 2020 Tambra Nicole Kendall

Do you have a Babycakes machine but don’t use it much? I have the one with the interchangeable plates. I like that it doesn’t heat up my kitchen like the oven does. I’m in Texas and the temps are still in the 80s. But you can also make small batches and that’s nice, too.

You can make more than cake pops in them. Why not try a batch of hush puppies? Or Pizza Bites? I forgot where I got this recipe or else I would attribute it to the person. These would be great for a family movie night or game night (like Monopoly or Scrabble).

Cake Pops with sprinkles

Babycakes Pizza Poppers

2 cups Bisquick
2 tsp Italian Seasoning
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 c Mozzarella cheese, grated
1/2 cup Pepperoni, finely chopped
1/2 cup Cooked Sausage, finely chopped
Pizza Sauce, warmed

In a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients.  In a small bowl combine liquid ingredients and add to the dry ingredients.  Fold in cheese, pepperoni and sausage.  The batter should be a thick pancake batter consistency, if it get too thick, stir in more milk until it reaches desired thickness. 

I put the batter into a gallon plastic bag and cut off a corner (remember
there are chunks of meat so the opening will need to accommodate)
 to easily fill the wells.  Cook for 4 minutes. ***A note from Tambra: You might have to cook a little longer than the recipe calls. I always make a test batch of a couple and adjust as necessary.

Pinterest has lots of Babycakes recipes sweet and savoury. Better Homes and Gardens has a Stocky Pecan Upside Down Babycakes recipe. You can find it here: https://www.bhg.com/recipe/cupcakes/sticky-pecan-upside-down-baby-cakes/

With Autumn arriving for some folks here’s a recipe that sounds perfect for the holidays: Apple Butter filled Apple Cider Cupcakes. Take a look here: http://www.pluggedintocooking.com/2011/10/apple-butter-filled-apple-cider-cupcakes/

This Ham and Cheese Puffs recipe looks good. http://www.partyfood2go.com/2011/06/babycakes-ham-and-cheese-puffs.html

I haven’t used my Babycakes maker much but with the weather cooling down a bit I plan to use it more and for making Smudge some homemade dog treats while I have it out. Have any of you made your homemade dog treats in the you Babycakes treat maker? I have the Dog Treat maker and it occurred to me that it was a Babycakes for dogs, so why not use my machine to make Smudgie pupcakes?

If you have one of these treat makers and aren’t sure how to use it, I found a blog post that might help you and don’t forget to search YouTube. https://www.lovefromtheoven.com/cakepops-with-the-babycakes-cake-pop-maker-and-a-babycakes-cakepop-maker-giveaway/

China cup, gold spoon and a pink rose

Now, let’s talk Air Fryers. When I bought mine I wasn’t sure if I would like it or if I would use it much. Whenever my Air Fryer goes where dead appliances go, I will get another one. Stephanie Manley of CopyKat Recipes has a huge variety of recipes (not just Air Fryer). Stephanie can be found here: https://copykat.com/category/type/air-fryer-recipes/. The Blue Jean Chef has some great Air Fryer recipes and tips. You can find her here: https://bluejeanchef.com/reces/cooking-method/air-fryer/

Mini frosted donuts

These appliances are a blessing to a person who has health issues. I have two Instant Pots, the 6 quart and a mini 3 quart. I use them so much I have them sitting on my kitchen counter. Getting an Instant Pot for Christmas was the best present I could have asked for! I make pork loin that falls apart it is so tender. Recently, I made turkey tenderloins and they came out wonderful. Pinto beans come out great, too.

The learning curve on these kitchen helpers isn’t steep. A little experimenting and using a notebook to write down your adjustments is all you need.

I hope this post has given you some ideas on how you can get more use out of these kitchen gadgets sitting on the shelf. Have a tea party or a picnic to celebrate…anything you want.

Teddy Bears Picnic

Hugs to all, stay safe, and be kind.

Tambra Nicole

Valentine’s Day Recipes and a Few Ideas

I have an Instant Pot IP-Duo60, which is a 6-quart size. The size is great for just us. I use it this appliance frequently. In fact, my sweet hubby got me an IP Lux Mini for Christmas.

With Valentine’s Day coming up I thought I’d offer up some menu ideas for those who are celebrating at home instead of going out. When you’re loved by family and good friends, your richly blessed. A day to celebrate love is a good idea.

I’m sure there are those out there who are going to complain about the commercialisation. Well, quit grumping about it and celebrate it in a less commercialised way. Make them a card and write the words of your heart. How good they make you feel when you’re with them. How you appreciate the things they do for you.

A sincere effort should be appreciated by the recipient. Giving a token that means something, an item they will treasure by you. Take look at what Etsy has to offer. There are many great artisans and a price range to fit most budgets. Plus, you’ll be supporting craftspeople and their unique items.

So, here are two recipes for your consideration:

Garlic Herb Pot Roast from WellnessMama.com

5 minutes prep time, 40 minutes cook time

Serves 6+

3-4 pound beef chuck roast

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon white pepper

1 teaspoon garlic powder or 3 cloves fresh, minced

1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning or equivalent dried herbs of your choice

2 Tablespoons coconut oil or butter

1 onion, peeled

6 large carrots, peeled

1-pound of chopped potatoes

2 cups bone broth

¼ cup of red wine, optional

4 ounces of cremini mushrooms, optional

½ teaspoon dried thyme, optional

Cut beef into 2-inch or smaller cubes. Place on a plate and sprinkle evenly with spices and set aside.

Turn Instant Pot to “Saute” setting and melt the coconut oil or butter in the pot.

Thinly slice an onion and add. Saute for 4-5 minutes until tender and slightly browned. Deglaze the pan with the red wine if you’re using it.

Add roast pieces in a single layer on top of the onions.

Pour broth over the roast.

Put on the lid, lock and set to seal.

While roast is cooking chop the carrots into 1-inch pieces.

Press the cancel/warm button to stop the Saute setting, then press the “Manual” button and set the time for 40 minutes.

When the time is up, turn off the Instant Pot and carefully release the pressure by pushing the lever to the “venting” position until all of the steam is released.

When the pressure releases open the lid and add the carrots and potatoes. Quickly replace the lid, turn the lever back to seal and press the Manual button for 10-minutes.

Repeat the venting process and check the carrots and potatoes for doneness. (You might have to add another 10 minutes.)

You can use the liquid to pour over the roast and vegetables or you can use it to make a gravy.

happy-valentine-day-1453206530PEgLarisaKoshkinaPubDomainPics Heart and flower graphic by Larisa Koshkina/Pixabay

Tambra’s Pork Loin with Mushrooms (Instant Pot)

45 minutes, plus 5 minutes then Quick Release

You might not have exactly the same ingredients I do, so use what you have. Don’t have A1 or Lea&Perrins, but you do have French’s Worcestershire, use it instead.

2-pound pork loin, cut in half

Brush on A1 sauce or Lea & Perrins Steak Sauce to all over pork loin

Sprinkle some steak seasoning or chicken seasoning

2 tablespoons Olive Oil or Coconut Oil to brown

1 ½ cups Bone Broth/Vegetable Broth or Chicken Broth

*I use Better than Bouillon and it works great, too

Small can of mushrooms, add the liquid with the broth

Trivet that comes with the Instant Pot

Plug in Instant Pot and turn on the Saute function. Add the olive oil or coconut oil. Take one half of the pork loin and lightly rub around the bottom of the pot. Now, add the other half of the pork loin. Brown. Remove to a plate while you add the broth and the can of mushrooms.

Place the trivet in the Instant Pot and the pieces of pork beside each other.

Put the lid on and make sure the lever is set to “Seal”.

Press the Manual button for 45 minutes. Let it go 5 minutes more and then do a Quick Release.

You can serve this with rice or mashed potatoes; the liquid is great to pour over the meat or you can make gravy. Add some steamed vegetables and you have a meal. Leftover meat can be shredded and barbeque sauce mixed in for sandwiches the next day.

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For other recipe ideas, pick up my book The Scottish English Texas: 56 Teatime Recipes, available at Amazon.com. A Valentine’s Day tea would wonderfully romantic. You could make the pork loin and some of the recipes from my tea book. Take some photos and put them in a memory book with notes written by both of you about the special things that were said, how you felt.

Kids can write messages on construction paper hearts with chores or things they’ll do without complaint. Maybe have 5 hearts. This needs to fit in with the child’s age. Example: Fold their clothes and put them away. Empty the dishwasher. Clean their room. Have the kids think of what they want to do. Place them in a decorated container so the recipient can pull one out.

While the craft supplies are out they could make Valentine cards for their grandparents. Pinterest has lots of great crafty and DIY things to do.

Whatever you decide, I hope your holiday is filled with love and happy memories.

Hugs to all, Tambra

PS: My website is up https://tambrakendall.com It still needs a bit of tweaking but at least I’ve got one again. Yay!