Thursday, September 27, 2018

My First Instapot Experience: Dairy Free & Gluten Free Bourbon Street Chicken & Cauliflower rice

My First Instapot Experience: 
Dairy Free & Gluten Free Bourbon Street Chicken & Cauliflower rice
My First Instapot Experience: Dairy Free Gluten Free Bourbon Street Chicken and Cauliflower rice

I borrowed the InstaPot 6 in 1 Lux mini from one of my mom’s ; so that we could test this expensive appliance out before we invest in one. Here is my chronicle of our First Experience.

We have dietary restrictions in our home and eat as clean as we can.

The first thing I was excited to try was Cauliflower rice. But to my disappointment, I couldn’t find anything that literally told me step by step what to do. I had no working knowledge of a pressure cooker, and knew this could become mush if not done correctly. I’m recording my exact steps so that I can repeat this meal later for us. It was a dairy free, gluten free hit!

Instapot Cauliflower rice:
Large head of cauliflower.
1 - 12oz can of low sodium non GMO chicken broth
      (Divided into 1 cup and what’s left over)
2 Tbsp Veg oil
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder
1/8 tsp Black Pepper
1/8 tsp salt

1.  Remove the leaves and cut raw cauliflower into large hunks.
2.  Pour 1 cup of chicken broth into metal inner pot.
3.  Add cauliflower hunks.
4.  Add lid, turn, and lock into place.
5.  Set the vent to the center seal position.
6.  Press the pressure cook button and set to 1 minute.
7.  After a few seconds, the pot will say “ON”.
8.  After about 9-11 minutes, the pot will have built pressure and begin counting down from 1 minute.
9.  Once pot finishes,stir around and be sure it is thoroughly cooked, but not mushy, or having large chunks
10.  Use potholder glove to move pressure release from sealed to low pressure vent on the right.
11.  Let 3 minutes elapse. Once the pressure is safely vented; open the lid.
12.  Remove from heat.
13.  Transfer cauliflower to strainer.
14.  I didn’t have a potato masher, so I used an egg beater to mash it into rice like pellets.
15.  Set instapot to Sauté, add two tbsp veg oil
16.  Add 4-5 shakes of garlic powder.
17.  Add 4-5 shakes of onion powder.
18.  Add 1/8 tsp of black pepper and 1/8 tsp of salt.
19. Add 4 Tbsp of chicken broth.
20. Sauté for 2 minutes.
21.  Then add cauliflower and sauté 2-3 minutes.
22.  Remove inner basket (don’t forget potholder gloves!), and set to the side for later.

Dairy free Gluten free Bourbon Street Chicken:
2.5 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
1/2 cup organic soy sauce
1/2 cup fresh diced yellow onions
1 cup organic 100% pure honey
1/4 cup organic ketchup (I use up the condiment packets in the fridge, because I’m cheap.)
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black Pepper
2 Tbsp Yellow corn meal (NOT corneal mix)
1 Tbsp water

1. Combine first 7 ingredients in Instapot.
2.  Close and lock lid.
3.  Set vent to center sealed position.
4.  Press pressure cook button and set to 20 minutes.
5.  Instapot will display the word “ON”, as it builds pressure.
6.  Once pressure builds display will begin counting down from 20.
7.  When 20min expires, use potholders to set vent to right side & low pressure release for 5 minutes.
8.  Move vent to far left to quick release the end of the pressure.
9.  Use tongs to remove and chicken.  Dice Chicken.
10.  Add yellow cornmeal and water together and mix in small bowls.
11.  Set Instapot to Sauté
12.  Add diced chicken and corneal mix.
13.  Cook 4-5 minutes as sauce thickens.
14.  Remove from Heat.
15.  Transfer to serving dish.
16.  Add diced cauliflower back to inner bowl.
17.  Sauté for 2-3 minutes with splash of left over chicken broth.
18.  Remove from heat.
19. Transfer to serving dish.
20. Serve as much cauliflower rice as desired and spoon chicken over it.
21. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 22, 2016

My repurposed "Easy Peasy 18" doll panties"

As many of you already know, we sell around 3,000 hooks a year at SICK LIL MONKEYS!  Like our CURRENT SALE at some of our LOWEST prices ever! Get a 6 pack of standard size Bates or Boye hooks sizes F, G, H, I, J & K for just $120 plus shipping!!!!!!! (hooks are filled with "mudd canes" or surprise designs) Hurry this is ONLY available THIS week only!  (Clover Amour sets of 10 $400 and steel sets of 6  - $210 THIS WEEK ONLY.  Ends 10/31/2016 11;59pm EST)

To order just visit here: our SICK LIL MONKEYS Facebook Page

Thursday, September 29, 2016

WIDE Color Pooling

Not long ago, like most of you, I began to see "color pooling" popping up everywhere in our crochet world.  I was very drawn to it,  especially since I have never really appreciated variegated before. Now I saw a way to really enjoy some of my favorite variegated colorways!  So, last week I gave it a shot, and it was neat but I had this fairly narrow piece of fabric, and the first method I read about, i.e. chaining 20 or 24, certainly isn't fool proof, I finished not really understanding HOW I successfully color pooled, and with a piece of rectangle crocheted cloth that was not good for very much.   

Meanwhile, also like most of you, I was reading lots about all of these amazing super scarves! I had a super cool idea  for one I Wanted to make myself , but I needed a wider section of color pooling.....Hmmmmmm.....     

Then two days ago, I came across the article that made my "light bulb click".  I REALLY HOPE YOU will checkout this explanation of color pooling by Ann Mancini-Williams, over at the Glamour4You Blog.  The article is appropriately titled, "Planned Pooling With Crochet Made Easy - 4 Simple Steps".  Once I finished her article I felt certain I knew how to go WIDE.  

Go read her tutorial, and then try working TWO full color repeats for the first row.  In the photos above I added one stitch past my color repeats, but I think my next attempt I will try adding 1 stitch for EACH color repeat. I may even try a full afghan size.  Have YOU TRIED WIDE COLOR POOLING?  PLEASE COMMENT AND  LET US KNOW below! 

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

What IS a Mudd Bubble Hook anyway?

As we grow, we have many fans that have been with us since we began four years ago, and we are happy to welcome many new fans.  At one time we utilized Etsy for order processing, however Etsy doesn't allow me to accurately reflect wait times, and I felt really creatively stifled with a constant list on order.  Etsy has a separate messaging system as well, which some of our customers never check or respond to when we have questions about their order. We understand our hooks are an investment.  The caning takes hours to weeks, the sculpting itself takes even more, then they are put through 5 grades of hand sanding, a mineral oil treatment, and dremel buffing to achieve a truly silky smooth feeling on what we feel is the BEST hook you will ever use.  We take our customers feedback SERIOUSLY.  Over the four years we have even edited and streamlined the sculpt based on YOUR combined feedback.  We are proud to say we have a very successful hook line, but unlike some hook makers with a team of over 20 artisans, I am but one person.  My hands are beginning to argue and dictate how much I can work the clay each day.

Just to give you more background on "us", the hubby, "Daddy Monkey" got a wonderful promotion at his job last week.  He began training this week, and his new salary, however we will have a small delay in the income as it will take about 3 weeks to see the first full paycheck.  When he first applied for this promotion, we had a customer so so upset that the wait times were not reflected accurately.   AFter a few ugly emails, and lots of tears, Daddy Monkey said, "No More.  Your hands hurt daily.  Finish Etsy and then sculpt only when you are inspired, as with the promotion we won't NEED you to sculpt any longer, you can get back to design, and sculpting when your hands feel good."  And this was the plan until we received a phone call late on the evening of 9/15/2016.  His dad has that ugly "C" word.  And they are using very finite terms, and we won't give it power by speaking it.  Suddenly I know I MUST sculpt and nothing matters but getting him to his dad.

I still had 4 Etsy orders for a total of 14 hooks to finish when I began the sale. As I worked them I decided to start practicing canes, I mean they are mudd hooks anyway, right?  And I think we have found the best solution for both me AND you!  The last 6 mudd hook styles I have made came from one of three places:
1)Practice canes
2) Older canes that needed to be mudded because they were too difficult to work
3) The ends of new canes I have reduced
What this is doing is causing each hook to be more of a surprise design rather than just swirling into muddy colors.  I will continue to work mudds in this fashion, depending on what is on my table or coming off my pasta roller you could get ANY design from an ombre, to a mudd cane, or cane ends.  Here is a photo of the last 6 styles before sanding:

I'm going to keep mudd prices where I have them for now, the sale prices will stand.  And those are:
Any size that I have on hand in Bates, Boye, or Amour:
Bates - $27
Boye $25
Amour  - $40
To order a specific size not in overstock or on hand:
Bates $37
Boye $35
Amour $50
To order any specific cane design, it will be full price as the canes will be limited and make 10 - 15 hooks each. Also just for the ease of processing I am no longer keeping canes and multiple listings for years on end, we will have them and make hooks with them until; they are gone.  If you want to be one of the 10 - 15 we that we make you'll need to order that specific design at full price:
Any size Boye - $45
Any size Bates - $47
Any size Amour - $57

I hope this helps clarify for any of you that may be confused.  We will continue the sale until the day of his dad's event just hoping on a wing and a prayer we get him there.  And if we don't thank you all for trying, and we will have to send Daddy Monkey to visit behind his other siblings in November.

After this sale, I will offer hooks occasionally but will mostly be getting back to hooking.....I HOPE!