Cheesecake is delicious but fattening, so I had never made one. Also, cheesecake baking is labor-intensive, with its water bath and springform pan. Then I read about pressure cooker cheesecake. Now cheesecake can be a Hasty Tasty dish.
You can lighten the cheesecake by substituting Neufchâtel cheese for the cream cheese, but I don’trecommend other low fat substitutions. For me, cheesecake is a decadent dessert I save for a rare treat or to give as an impressive gift.
I made plain cheesecake and topped it with fresh berries. I used a 7” pan and my 6 quart Instant Pot Duo Evo Plus.
16 oz. Neufchâtel cheese (room temperature)
2 oz. sour cream
2 eggs (room temperature)
1 Tbsp. Vanilla extract
1 cup Graham cracker crumbs for crust
2 Tbsp. Unsalted butter, melted, for crust
Prepare crust by combining Graham cracker crumbs and butter. Press mixture into a 7” springform pan.
Place crust in freezer for 10-15 minutes.
Combine sour cream and Neufchâtel cheese with sugar and beat, but don’t over beat.
Add eggs one at a time.
Add vanilla extract and stir just until combined.
Pour filling into prepared crust.
Using a sling, place pan into pressure cooker on a trivet over 10 oz. water.
Seal cooker. Cook under pressure for 28-30 minutes.
Quick-release pressure and carefully remove cheesecake from the pot. Check for doneness. if edges aren’t set and center jiggles, it’s done. If not, return the pan and trivet to the pressure cooker and cook 5 minutes additional.
Cool cheesecake completely on a rack. Cool another 4 hours (or overnight) in the refrigerator.
Slice cheesecake into 8 pieces, top (optional), and serve.
Cheesecake should be stored in the refrigerator and eaten within 4 days. (It won’t last that long!) 😋
I want to thank Barbara Schrieving for her excellent tutorial on foolproof cheesecake. If you don’t follow her Pressure Cooking Today site, I recommend you subscribe.
Butfor the COVID19 pandemic, this would be Kentucky Derby week in my hometown of Louisville. In its honor, I made a staple of Derby parties, Benedictine Cheese.
As a child, I had no idea what this stuff was, yet I loved it. To me, it was green cheese. Yummy stuff to spread on crackers, I now enjoy it on sliced zucchini, carrot sticks, and celery.
Here’s how I make Kentucky Benedictine Cheese.
8 oz. cream cheese
1 medium cucumber
1/2 small sweet onion
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp hot sauce
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
1/4 tsp. Freshly ground black pepper
(Optional) Fresh herbs for garnish
(Optional) green food coloring
Add chopped cucumber and onion to food processor (I used my Vitamix) and purée.
Strain to remove excess liquid. (Cheesecloth works well)
Add seasonings and lemon juice. Blend.
Blend mixture with cream cheese until creamy.
Refrigerate until serving.
As April draws to a close, so does the quarantine (to a certain extent. Re-opening will vary from location). The Kentucky Derby may be postponed, but I can pretend I’m Derby-ing by enjoying the traditional Derby foods like Benedictine Cheese. Maybe I’ll bake a Derby Pie next, who knows?
Those who follow Dixie Pixie Dust (my travels blog) may remember we spent our wedding anniversary in El Reno, Oklahoma, dining at Sid’s, home of the original onion burger. It’s a classic diner along historic Route 66.
Today I duplicated the experience in our kitchen. I need to tweak my technique a bit, but we were pleased with the results.
I toasted whole wheat hamburger buns, which I discovered hidden in my freezer, on the griddle while frozen fries cooked in the air fryer.
Using two quarter-pound burgers from the freezer and one onion, chopped, I grilled the onions first before adding the burger. Onion burgers are created by pressing the meat into the onions, incorporating the onions into the meat. Sid’s uses 3 ounces beef, which yields a thinner burger.
The onion burger was born in the Great Depression as an economic move to stretch beef. Like many recipes of that era it’s now a popular, beloved dish. Onion burgers are a way to reduce red meat and add a vegetable to a meal.Unfortunately, I already had 4-ounce patties. Next time I will use 3 ounces of meat for a better meat-to-onions ratio.
I can’t compete with Sid’s Diner, but this was a close knock-off. Not bad quarantine cuisine.
I had fun using several of my kitchen gadgets to make my healthier version of taco bowls. First, I “fried” the taco shells in my new Power Air Fryer oven. I cooked my chicken breast in my Instant Pot Duo Mini 3-quart, shredded it using my Cuisinart, and heated my cheese sauce in my microwave oven. The payoff was a delicious and filling meal that counts only 3 Weight Watchers SmartPoints.
HASTY TASTY TACO BOWLS
½ pound chicken breasts (Fresh or frozen)
1 can Ro*Tel (you pick heat level)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn kernels, rinsed and drained
1 onion, chopped
1 jar Tostitos Queso con Salsa (or similar brand)
Fresh cilantro (optional)
Form each tortilla into a bowl using a mold or oven-proof bowl.
Air-fry at 370°F for 12 minutes.
Place chicken breasts and contents of a can of Ro*Tel into the pot of a pressure cooker. Cook under pressure 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow pressure to drop on its own.
While chicken cooks, prep beans, corn, onions, and cilantro and combine.
Carefully open pressure cooker and remove the chicken (replace lid to trap in the heat). Shred chicken and return to cooker.
Stir in beans, corn, onions, and cilantro mixture with the shredded chicken. Cover and allow residual heat to warm the beans and corn.
Pour Queso con Salsa into a heatproof measuring pitcher and heat 2-3 minutes in the microwave oven, stirring occasionally.
Place taco bowl shell on a plate, fill with 1/4 of the mixture, and then drizzle with 2 Tbsp. of the queso con salsa. Serve immediately.