Let’s Party #1

Hey! Let’s Party!

Welcome to the first week of Let’s Party! I don’t have any rules for the party, just ask that you do not link up Etsy shops, giveaways and sweepstakes stuff … this is suppose to be a fun, learning place!

Make sure you stop and visit some of the other bloggers that are sharing as well! I’ve picked up some pretty great ideas and tips by visiting others! Share the love and leave a comment!

Instant Pot Baked Potatoes

Technically, they aren’t baked, but rather steamed, right?

Anyways … when Luckys Market had their 8 pound bag of taters on sale for $1.99, you bet I was right there to pick up a bag and use my $5 off $30 coupon. Of course, I spent more than $30 … I apparently have no self control in a new store.

Instant Pot Potato ready to eat

I did, however, pick up a beef tenderloin to make on Christmas day so hey, $30 of it was for the beef. Pricey little thing.

My original plan was to make it when Jamie & Amanda were around (Mark was in Indiana) but I also wanted to do it during daylight to snap a few pics … cuz we all know the night time pics just look horrible. Not that my daytime pics are a whole lot better, but to some degree, they are. I’m working on that little skill, trust me.

So, was I worried about doing this without poking them? A little. Ok, A LOT. I mean, heck, we are putting these things under pressure and they need to breathe, right??? Expand?? Something.

potatoes cleaned and ready

But I went ahead and did it the way the majority of sites told me to … and NO POKING the taters.

Grab a few taters, make sure they are the about the same size. Give them a good wash cuz you know they grow in the ground, right?? *My brother in law and his wife grow taters and can I tell you how awesome they are when you just dug them out of the ground?? Tender and soooo flavorful.

Back to our task at hand. Sorry about that …

cup of water fire-king glass

Add a cup of water to the Instant Pot.

pour water in

Place your trivet in the pot. It came with it, you have it, just go find it.

Put your taters in there.

Put the lid on and lock in place. Make sure the valve moves freely and flip it to pressure cooking.  If you see a stream of steam coming out of the vent after 10 minutes, better check to make sure you have it locked in. I didn’t and wasted my first 10 minutes.

vent open.jpg

Set the pressure cooker to 10 minutes. After about 10 minutes, you’ll hear a beep and the countdown begins! Beep means it’s to pressure and now it starts to cook for the time you programmed!

vent open and not pressurizing.jpg

Allow to cook and release naturally.

Instant Pot Potato cut open

This does TAKE longer than 10 minutes. About 10 minutes to come to pressure, 10 minutes to cook and 10-15 minutes to release. About 30 minutes total. Certainly LESS time if you were to bake them in the oven AND you will not be heating your kitchen up AND it leaves your oven open to cook other things!

flaky inside

Would I do this again? Yes!! I live in Paradise which is also known for the amount of humidity we have so anything to avoid heating the kitchen up is a bonus!!

times up

*I used the leftover taters to make some country fried taters the next day for Mark when he got back from his trip. Just diced the tater up, tossed in a large skillet with some ghee, add some all purpose seasoning and let them crisp up.

Looking forward to sharing this with some of these awesome parties! Go check them out! And come back to party with ME on Wednesday!

Chilled Spinach Dip

It’s that time of year again where we start pulling out our all time favorite appetizers for the holiday parties!  We just had the boat parade party Saturday so it was a perfect opportunity for me to get some pics of this!

spinach dip ready to serve

It’s a fairly simple recipe and I have yet to meet a single person who does not like this!

real life photo shoots

This is one of those things that happens behind the scenes of real life food bloggers … apparently Kitten was thinking she was supposed to be part of the photo …

ingredients

A little cropping helps out but you can still see her paw above the spinach!

Ok, here’s what you need to make this really awesome dip!

2 boxes of frozen chopped spinach, thawed

2 packages of Knorrs Vegetable Recipe Mix

1 carton of sour cream

1 can of water chestnuts, chopped

2 cups mayo

1 round loaf pupernuckle bread, hollowed and pieces torn

green onions for garnish

First things first: squeeze that spinach as dry as you can … there’s a lot of liquid in there and you need to remove as much as you can. Toss the spinach in a large bowl with the rest of the ingredients EXCEPT the green onions.

Mix everything really well in a large bowl, cover and put in the fridge to chill for at least an hour.

hollow bread bowl
Bread Bowl

When ready to serve, fill up the bread bowl and serve with the torn pieces on the side for dipping. We generally grab two loaves, one for the bowl and the other we cut up and serve alongside for the dipping. Trust me, you will run out of bread if you don’t use two so keep a stash of tortilla chips and crackers on the side!

Enjoy!

Looking forward to sharing with some of these GREAT Parties … go check them out!

Classic Margaritas

I love margaritas. Yes, I know, I also love those Peach Vodka things … but a classic margarita is really hard to beat!  And when one of my girlfriends showed up with a bottle of Patron, I knew we had to make these.

Old picture and do not have any of these bottles, except the skull dude Continue reading “Classic Margaritas”

Dog Sitting

We took care of a puppy over the weekend.

dogsitting blue

Whee!

Mind you, the cats hate us, even though it’s only a 9 pound Frenchie or whatever he is … all I know is his name is BLUE.

Blue is only 12 weeks old.  I’ve never had a PUPPY before. 53 and I’m babysitting a PUPPY!

The kids are angry. Only because I don’t invite and welcome their dogs (Randi and Matt) or friends (Amanda) with open arms.  They have big dogs. Dogs that terroize the cats. Not sure what Blue will do but the cats are bigger than he is so I’m not overly worried there.

Mark isn’t crazy either.

Well, now he is because BLUE is such a FUN puppy!

And Jamie and Amanda are having a blast with him as well. Amanda has a ‘few’ dogs and she’s got some tricks up her sleeve … including making Blue his very own customized toy!  I’m gonna be sharing that later because I think it’s totally worth sharing.

Friday night, Mark made a lead run for Blue so he could be outside with us while we were in the pool. Blue is small and I don’t think he understands docks, water, falling, etc. just yet so I didn’t want him to have free run of the yard. Imagine explaining THAT to his owner?

Kitten bolted out the door when the kids came home. Big Kitty hid under the bed. Blue slept all night in his crate til 7am. Better than any baby!

All in all, we had a pretty fun weekend dog sitting … not sure how soon we’ll be doing it again though as it was a LOT of hands on playing!

At the end of Sunday night, we were ready to get back into our normal routine and let the real parents take over …

Cobb Salads

Somedays, all I want to do is head out to Sweet Tomatoes and have an all you can eat salad buffet with unlimited soups and a few other starchy things on the side. I never opt for dessert because I’m usually a stuffed pig by the time everyone is ready to hit the yogurt bar.  No thank you.  Mark and Jamie, on the other hand, are all about the frozen yogurt and such …

They do NOT serve Cobb Salads there but whenever I get around to making this, I’m always like, YUMMMM, we should do this more often!

Continue reading “Cobb Salads”

The New Us!

Welcome welcome Welcome!

Some of you may know me from FrugalinFlorida … others of you are most likely huh? Who the heck are these people?

It’s ok, you’ll find out all about us soon enough if you stick around!

For a year or so, I’ve been wanting to do the blogging thing full time and was actually one of the things I had goals for when I retired. Obviously, I’m not retired just yet but I decided to go ahead and just do it! So here we are!

Continue reading “The New Us!”