Saturday, August 24, 2019

Tracy's Orange Muffins

I'm not a big muffin gal, or cupcakes for that matter, I don't often see the point.  HOWEVER, that being said, when I want a muffin and I want an ORANGE muffin then this is the go-to.  There's a leap of faith here with the whole orange in the food processor thing but, trust me, I haven't led you astray yet.  Try this, you're gonna love this.  Read through to be sure you have the ingredients and go for it...  I'm experimenting today with lemons, same method, I'll let you know! 



In a blender or food processor: 

1 orange (barely trim off the stem end if it is gnarly, and remove pips, cut into hunks)
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup plain oil

Blitz like crazy till smoothish but a little chunky. 

Add 1 egg

Blitz again 

SIFT OVER all at once: 

1 1/2 cup self raising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
Pinch salt

                         *IF you don’t have self raising, then make your own, using all purpose flour and increase to 1 tsp baking powder and measure 1/2 tsp salt

MIX gently together

Divide into 12 (lined with paper OR sprayed) muffin tins,  IF your orange was massive you might have extra batter, just put in greased ramekin and bake along side, 

Bake. Preheated 355F or 180C? Oven for 20 minutes, middle rack

Make a glaze with 1 cup of confectioners sugar and enough orange juice to make a thick pourable glaze, and add a little cardamom if you have it. 

Glaze when they’re cool… EAT THEM

Here's the picture play by plays:

the WHOLE orange, sugar and oil, blitzed then I shot the egg down the tube, sifted the flour on top, whizzed it quickly then finished with a spatula, divide and bake

They dome beautifully, just 20 in the oven, extra batter divided in two greased ramekins, perfect mini cakes.
Truth, I dipped the tops in glaze, these are fine unglazed or use any icing you like, maybe cream cheese? mmm . or just a sprinkle of sugar would be nice a they bake

So, there's the muffins, go make them, they're crazy easy, moist and really really good, the pith doesn't make them bitter at all... try them, let me know what you think, 


Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Instant pot Cold Start Yogurt

Ok, this is QUICK and I don't even have any play by play pictures, BUT, I did a quick video so... here's the low down,

you have an Instant Pot pressure cooker, a bunch of little jars, ultra filtered milk (insert Fairlife) and you have some active yogurt culture, like from a previous batch or you grabbed a little .75 tub of Fage greek yogurt.  You're set.  Unless you want it sweet, then add between half and a full can of sweetened condensed milk.  NOW you're set.

Combine the ingredients, divide them in the jars, add about a cup of water to the inner liner and put a trivet in if you feel like it, then play real life tetris and stack those jars!  Put some lid on, either the pressure cooker lid or a plate or whatever you have.  NO pressure, just keeps the dust off.

Set timer for 11 hours on yogurt setting and go to bed.
MORNING! put lids on the jars, put them in the fridge, go to work or go have your day
AFTERNOON! eat the yogurt. :)


Here is the link to the video of the process and my charming chit chat,  and be nice, I'm just making some yogurt.

/thanks, tracy

Friday, July 19, 2019

Chicken and potatoes in the pressure cooker


This is my goto for chicken thighs, it's easy, quick and absolutely delicious.  Thighs are cheaper, tastier and way more tender and juicy than chicken breasts and this method will convince even the die hard thigh-hater.  Seriously, it's yummy!!

RECIPE (and method)

6 chicken thighs, boneless, skinless
dredge (flour, salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, any other spices you like)
plain oil and/or bacon fat
1 large onion
1 small bag mini potatoes
2 garlic cloves
cream to finish

Dredge the chicken thighs and saute on high in the pressure cooker.  Fry them in batches until beautifully brown. 

Remove chicken and fry cut up onion for a few moments, then add the potatoes and garlic. Shush around a little bit.  Add about a cup of water and deglaze the pan.  Return the chicken to the pan, just set it on top of the potatoes/onion.

Lock and load, high pressure for 15 minutes.  Open either quick or natural, your choice.  This super easy dish can wait for you happily!

Remove chicken and veggies to a platter.  Turn pot on high and boil the sauce a little, add a little cream to enrich it if you're feeling the love.

Drape a little sauce on the chicken, serve with sauce on the side and in my case, with a little blob of aioli . (video recipe link below)

I didn't to play by play pics but here's the link to the video, it's real time so grab a glass of wine.

I hope you enjoy,




Saturday, May 18, 2019

My beef, pepperoni and cheese Empanadas


ok, straight into it, I'm not going to make you read paragraphs of my hopes, dreams, aspirations or thoughts about my version of empanadas.  There are videos, which are linked, here's the ingredients, quickie method and then you can start making yours.


DOUGH (dump in a food processor, you can make it by hand if you don't have one)

2 cups all purpose flour
pinch salt
tsp baking powder
1/3 cup ice water mixed with an egg

Dump it all in the food processor, pulse till it's a dough, divide in two, wrap each half, toss in fridge or freezer till you want them.  DONE :)

FILLING *this time it's beef, pepperoni and cheese but you can fill these with ANYTHING

a little oil for the pan
1 lb of ground beef
1 carrot, onion, celery, large garlic clove, chopped small
tomato paste
salt, pepper
italian season blend or whatever herbs/spiced you love
aleppo pepper if you have any, gives a lovely flavor without too much heat

Throw it all in a frying pan, fry till the meat is brown and the veggies are a little soft and the tomato paste is brown.  Add enough water to make a loose mixture.  Cover and simmer about 20, leave to cool, throw in a bag in the fridge till you want it.  Freezes great!! DONE

*shred some mozzarella cheese or whatever cheese you like, put in a ziplock and keep it in the fridge till you're ready.


Roll half the pastry on a lightly floured board, this stuff is super easy to deal with.

Cut into 6 inch circles, reroll and cut as you need.  I get 4 from each half of dough with a little waste or I make smaller ones with the leftover pastry and filling.

Fill each round with some cheese and a scoop of the cold meat filling.  I use a 2 inch ice cream scoop.

Fold each round and pinch closed.  Either press with a fork to seal or go fancy and roll the edges.

Egg wash each empanada and bake on a parchment lined pan, Preheated 400 oven for 20 mins or so, until lightly browned and heated through, remember the filling is cooked.

EAT! or cool and freeze for another day if you can hide any from your family, or, preferably, just eat them... all!

Here's the links to the videos:

Empanada dough:

Empanada filling:

Empanada bake and the reveal

/thanks for your support, and enjoy!

I felt like chicken piccata, so I made some, it was pretty easy

I had some chicken breast, some pasta and some capers.  I added some flour, some water (or broth), some lemon and some butter.  I had a pretty killer dinner for one.  This is easy to upsize to feed as many as you want. 

This is one of the drive-by meals, it's a method more than a recipe.  Once you get it, you can alter and swap things out (like salmon for the chicken which is amamamamzing!) or different pastas, you're going to use it all the time. 

Here's the link to the video, it's sort of long but if you slip past my nagging at the beginning, I think you're going to be delighted with this new shortcut :) 

/enjoy! :)

Beef and broccoli in the Instant pot Pressure cooker, you're going to love this

Alright, here it is... I did beef and broccoli in the pressure cooker (the Instant-pot) and it's tender and rich and tasty and amazing, it's pretty quick and super easy. 

The cheap, tough, cuts of meat are the wheelhouse for pressure cookers.  IF you don't have one, get one, if you have one, use it for this sort of cut of meat. 

Here's the link to the video and recipe, enjoy!  Let me know what you think and when you make it. 

Oh and full disclosure, it's absolutely easy to double, you are going to want to


Aioli! I have a shorter, better, method... no one has time for one drop at a time

DriveBy recipe, it's a QUICKIE!!!  

I always have a batch of aioli in my fridge.  This is the short and sweet method, you're going to love it, go make it... here's the link to the video and recipe... let me know how you love it!  


Wednesday, April 17, 2019

SUPER easy flaky Biscuits... there's a video too :)

Ok, you want biscuits?  I can get you biscuits on the table in 30 mins if you focus :)

This super quick and easy biscuit recipe can be completed in just 30 minutes! Recipe below! --- --- RECIPE 3 cups all purpose flour 2? TBS sugar, more or less to taste 1/4 tsp cream of tartar (knife tip worth :)) 2 tsp baking powder 1 1/2 sticks butter/margarine combo (3/4 cup) I like a combo but you can do all butter or all margarine if you want, I won't judge pinch of salt RUB it all together, float and drop method, yeah, i invented that term ADD 1 cup of milk with 1 egg mixed in Mix with knife, be nice pat on floured surface and roll to a long rectangle fold a couple of times, flip and repeat Pat to about 1 inch, cut biscuits with a straight sided cutter, don't twist!, yeah this is one of those times it really actually matters BAKE in preheated 450 for 15 mins

IF you need to, brush them with butter when they come out of the oven.
Throw them in a basket, be prepared to make more... they're delicious.


here's the youtube link if you'd like to check out the other videos too...

Thanks for all your support, I'm trying a new thing trying to link the blog and the YouTube channel which finally has MY name on it, so I'm Tracy Cooks in Austin everywhere!!!


Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Pancakes, in the pressure cooker, in little molds, so sort of like pancake muffins, they're yummy and super easy and totally hands off!

Ok, there's a ton of things you can do with a pressure cooker, and there's a ton of things you should NOT cook in it... just because you can doesn't ever mean you should.  That being said, pancake muffins... yeah man and you use a mix because, if you're going to junk food it, do it all the way.  No, not bisquick, sorry, but no.  get the cheapie all in one pancake mix, the one where you just add water, that's the level of hack we're doing here.  Trust me, when I go rogue, I go all the way and yeah, they're delicious, weird, sure, but yummy.  

Stick with me here, now, the short version:
My chocolate chip Pancake bites.
*In the 7cup “egg bites” silicone mold. They look weird but they're light and fluffy (for steamed puddings) and taste like pancakes, big shock, but also like muffins, also big shock! hahaha
Spray mold with non stick
Put 1 cup water and trivet in pot
Combine well:
1 cup “complete” pancake mix
3/4 cup water
Handful of chocolate chips
Full the mold, use it all.
High pressure 5 minutes
Npr rest for 5 minutes
Remove from pot and let rest 10 minutes.
Pop them out of the mold.
Eat with whatever dipping sauce floats your boat.
I’d say they save or freeze but it’s 7, they all go.

I'm doing a video but wanted to get the quick and dirty details out... enjoy, go make them!!!

Monday, August 27, 2018

Hot Smoked Salmon, inside, using the pressure cooker, this time an instant pot, seriously good, seriously easy


I have a smoker and regularly make hot smoked salmon.  I love my smoker and I wished my mom could have the same thing, she doesn't have a smoker.  She does, however, have an instant pot pressure cooker and I decided I would try to find a way she could make the salmon I make here but there, without a smoker.  I think I've done it.




Salmon, with skin, in 1 inch pieces
salt, sugar, pinch of cinnamon
Pecan or hickory chips


Cut the salmon into 1 inch pieces

Sprinkle fish with equal amounts of sugar and salt and sprinkle a little cinnamon, leave to dry at room temperature.

Make foil packet, open, with dry wood chips


Set pressure cooker to saute, put open foil packet with chips in it on the bottom of the liner pot, let heat and cycle through hot/on for the 30 mins setting. close lid

When cycle finishes, open lid, pour one generous tablespoon of water on the hot chips.
Put trivet and plate with salmon in the pot, close lid.


Time for 11 minutes.



Open, remove salmon, shut off pot.


I've done this a number of times and it's delicious and I am thrilled that I can cook for my mom in another country, even though she doesn't have a smoker but we both have pressure cookers :)




Sunday, August 19, 2018

MY steamed Pork Buns, another use for my pressure cooker, as a steamer! bamboo baskets fit perfectly and tonight, it's leftover bbq pork steamed buns

Here's the video link to youtube:; 

I made some 'chinese' bbq pork the other day and had a little left.  I chopped it into tiny pieces, threw it in a pan with some of the ingredients i used to make the pork, boiled it and set it aside.  i made some dough, pretty easy, and then married them... may i present my cheap eats, leftover bbq pork steamed buns... ala me


TRACY'S BAO(ish) bbq pork steamed buns

2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp yeast
1 tsp sugar
3/4 cup room temperature water
DUMP it all iin a kitchen aid with dough hook, knead till smooth. OR do it by hand if you have that kind of time and energy
LET it rest, covered, till double, about 45 mins.
Divide into 12 
Roll into balls, let rest
WHILE THE DOUGH IS RESTING, make the filling: 
You need about 2 cups of chopped (tiny) meat filling (I made charsiu yesterday, recipe coming)
1 TB light soy
1 TB oyster sauce
1 TB hoisin
1 TB sugar
1/2 cup water
1 TB cornstarch
THROW it all in a saucepan, boil till it's thick, put aside.

Roll balls flat, there's a technique, i'll show you in the video tomorrow. put filling in each, seal and put on parchment squares and put in the steamer to rest about 10 mins.
Put steamer over boiling water, steam 15 mins, remove steamer, covered, and let it rest 5 mins.
Open, eat. 

I'm doing the play by plays and editing a video of the method and it'll be up tomorrow, for now here's the recipe 

BY WAY OF A TEASE; here's the pork


Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Poached eggs, perfect every single time, this is a method, not a recipe, c'mon, you can do it



THIS is my method for making poached eggs... they're perfect every single time, you an make one or a bunch for a crowd.  SO easy and completely foolproof, seriously, trust me

in  pan of boiling water at least 1 1/2 inched deep, transfer an egg from a small dish, remove from heat immediately and time for 3 minutes.  remove with slotted spoon, leat.

BUT I couldn't leave it alone, so I made toast, added some of the salmon I hot smoked yesterday (yes, recipe on the blog) and put the egg on top then draped some of my cheater hollandaise (yes, on the blog) over it and ate it.  it was so crazy delicious.

IF you like a firmer egg, add 30 second increments till you hit your sweet spot.  MINE is a cooked through but still tender white and a custard runny yolk.

Go make some poached eggs...  then tart them up!

Here's the howto:

Friday, May 11, 2018

Hot Fudge Peanut Butter sauce for ice cream or just for eating if it's been a really bad day...


I have a recipe in my back pocket for 30 years, easily.  I can make this in my sleep, sometimes with peanut butter, sometimes without.  Nothing else changes, either add it or don't.

It's quick, delicious, rich, thick and you will absolutely love it, I promise.  It tastes like real hot fudge, yeah, it's my party trick piece.  I wasn't going to share it but I have to, you're welcome :D


Ingredients and method, video link below

Use it over ice cream or cake or just eat it

IN a saucepan, combine:

1/2  cup sugar
3 TB cocoa
1.5 TB cornstarch
pinch salt
1/2 cup water
MIX and BOIL till thick
1+ TB peanut butter

ADD 2 tsp corn syrup OR golden syrup (optional)

when thick
drizzle of vanilla
1 TB butter

MIX and EAT!!!

**add water if it gets too thick after it's cooled a bit**

MICROWAVE instructions:

this is CAN absolutely be made in  a microwave! Just combine the sugar, corn starch, cocoa and water and salt, in a 4 cup measure (this does bubble up)  Nuke till thick, stirring frequently, about 2 mins.  add the peanut butter and optional syrup, nuke 20 seconds.  Add vanilla and butter and stir till melted...  add water if desired to thickness that makes you happy

Here's the video...

go make it...:D


Thursday, May 10, 2018

Another version of the mini crustless quiche egg bites in the Instant Pot pressure cooker

So, I did a new video to update these little mini crustless quiches, also known as Egg Bites and copycat starbucks sous vide egg bites, but they're just crustless quiches :) so easy, so delicious, so fast and eggs and pressure cookers are just best friends! this is more a method than a recipe. For the babyfood silicone mold, I fill each about 1/3 full of whatever makes me happy. Today it's bacon, green onion, fried onion. sometimes I add potatoes or whatever roasted veggies I have left over, the list of possibilities is ENDLESS.

I use 4 eggs, 1/2 cup cheddar cheese and 1/3? cup heavy cream in my blender and whip till smooth.
Fill the mold and steam, over about a cup of water, on steam setting for 7 minutes, leave to rest about 10 and then leave on the counter a few more so they set up. Easy.

Faster than traditional? no way but the texture is different and tender and I prefer them this way to baked. You can add other cheese, cottage cheese, cream cheese, again the list is endless. Play with what makes you happy.

Go make these. I like to hoard a little of the veggies and/or meats from the week and on the weekend make a mountain of these, in the little molds and in the jars and in whatever else you have and then you have a week of snacks.

I do like to take these, when they're cold, and slice and put them in sandwiches...too yummy!

Here's the link to my youtube video with the details and some chatting