Spicy Instant Pot Chard and Pinto Bean Risotto

Quick and infinitely adaptable by changing out ingredients and seasonings, risotto is one of my favorite dishes to make in an Instant Pot or pressure cooker. Under pressure, short fat Arborio rice kernels transform into delectably creamy risotto–in just 4 minutes. By adding green chiles, spicy pepper cheese, and pumpkin seeds, the Italian rice dish takes a Southwestern turn—into spicy Instant Pot chard and pinto bean risotto. This recipe first appeared on Pressure Cooking Today where I’m a contributor.

Spicy Instant Pot Chard and Pinto Bean Risotto | Letty's Kitchen

I’ve read that modern Italian cooks often prepare their risotto in a pressure cooker. It makes sense: My trusty old stovetop pressure cooker is Italian-made, and, world-wide, for one reason or another, many busy families have two working adults. If home-cooked healthy food is important, so are timesavers like pressure cookers.

Risotto is a culinary canvas—paint it however you like. Start with this spicy Instant Pot chard and pinto bean risotto recipe, then sub in different  greens or beans, like I did in these risotto recipes featuring bok choy, spinach, or kale. You might stir in another variety of cheese, goat cheese, for example. Parmesan, the traditional risotto cheese, is always a good choice. Continue Reading…

Chocolate Honey Pie with Cinnamon Graham Crust

Deep rich chocolate, creamy with cashews and hinting of cinnamon, vanilla, and espresso, this chocolate honey pie with cinnamon graham crust is a new, better than ever, enhanced update of one of my long-time favorites.

partial slice of Chocolate Honey Pie with Cinnamon Graham Crust | Letty's Kitchen

This rich, healthy-ish pie begins with a press-in crust made with cinnamon graham crackers, maple syrup, and vegetable oil. All the filling ingredients, raw cashews, Dutch process cocoa, honey, coconut oilarrowroot flour, and flavorings are blended until smooth, whisked and cooked until thickened, and poured into the pre-baked crust. Pretty straightforward. Continue Reading…

Instant Pot Irish Potato Kale Soup

Instant Pot Irish potato kale soup is a blend of potatoes so soft they’re falling apart, with ribbons of dark green kale, mildly sweet leeks, and garlic, all in a tasty no-tell vegetable broth. Just five ordinary ingredients–extraordinary flavor that will steal your heart away! Make in your pressure cooker or in your regular soup pot—it’s wonderful either way.

Instant Pot Irish Potato Kale Soup Continue Reading…

Creamy Vegan Kiwi Lime Avocado Pie

This green on green pie is just what I imagined—a healthier melt-in-your-mouth version of the sweet-tart American dessert, key lime pie. Instead of softly whipped cream or sweet meringue, vegan kiwi lime avocado pie flaunts a wreath of bright green kiwis. It’s a delicious and wholesome food play on the original.

Creamy Vegan Kiwi Lime Avocado Pie | Letty's Kitchen

It always surprises me how soaked and softened raw cashews pureed with a little water morph into a creamy stand-in for dairy, “cashew cream.” Blend this “cream” with coconut milk, coconut oil, and sugar, for a remarkably similar, lick-able alternative to sweetened condensed milk. Add lime zest and juice to this vegan riff, and you’d swear you were in Key West singing along with Jimmy Buffet. Continue Reading…

Quick and Easy Tomato Carrot Marinara Sauce

Everybody needs an easy marinara sauce in their kitchen repertoire. Made with ingredients we aim to keep on hand for meals at a moment’s notice, this flavorful tomato carrot marinara sauce comes together as fast you can boil pasta water.

Quick and Easy Tomato Carrot Marinara Sauce | Letty's Kitchen

Marinara sauce originates in the southern Italian port city of Naples. Minutes after her fisherman husband returned, a mariner’s wife could quickly cook up a garden-fresh marinara–thus the name for quick tomato sauces.

I’d wager there are as many interpretations of marinara as there are fisherman’s wives. One sauce might be kept chunky, another blended smooth. You’ll see marinara recipes with and without onions, many with fresh herbs, and some made rich with tons of butter.

Fresh carrots enrich this version, enhanced with garlic, onions and dried herbs. When the carrots are cooked to very soft, you puree everything into a smooth sauce. For an extra velvety feel, add a tablespoon of butter, just at the very end. Continue Reading…