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Last Christmas my son and DIL gave me an Instant Pot. I was excited to use it, but I have to admit that it has been a real learning curve for me. But, at last, I have come up with a recipe that I know I will go back to again and again because it cooked up this delicious side dish so quickly and easily. The addition of butter and brown sugar to a mixture of carrots and butternut squash with a bit of cinnamon almost makes these healthy veggies seem more like a dessert than a side vegetable.
I used baby carrots in this version of the recipe. Sliced large carrots will work equally well. I was worried that the squash might night cook as quickly as the carrots, or visa versa, but they came out beautifully in just 4 minutes! It was so easy to make, just throw everything into the Instant Pot, put on the lid, push manual and set the timer for 4 minutes. Voila!
Here is the recipe:
This recipe of glazed carrots and squash would be a terrific side dish at Thanksgiving. But, because it doesn't heat up the house during the summer, it is great any time of year!
You can also vary this recipe for only butternut squash or only carrots, but I love the mixture of the two. I hope you love it, too!
You don't have an Instant Pot yet? Here is a link to get you started!
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Summer is here and coping with kids and heat sometimes requires some creative thinking and helpful gadgets! Every so often, in our day to day lives we come across gadgets that we realize we are relying on almost everyday and really don't want to do without. I was thinking about what those gadgets are for me right now and I asked the girls what their favorite gadgets are as well. Here is a list of things you may come to find will make your life easier!
Back when we were doing Friday Faves, we did a similar post. It is funny to look back and see how the list has changed. Of course, we aren't limiting ourselves to just kitchen gadgets this time.
PIttsburgh 7/8" Spring Clamp Set: My husband and I were in Harbor Freight and I saw these little clamps. I knew they would be perfect for all of the summer snack bags, etc, that I need to close up. If you have a Harbor Freight near you, they were only $1.99 there, for a set of 6. They close tightly and are so cute!
Oster Bread Maker: Alicia loves this bread maker. She says that it mixes up the perfect pizza dough for her every time!
Kitchen Aid Food Processor: Along with her bread machine, Alicia loves her food processor. She says she makes tomato sauce in her food processor with canned whole tomatoes, garlic, onions and spices. Then she keeps it in a container in her fridge and uses it throughout the week! Perfect for the pizza sauce! (I love my food processor too, which is this one.)
OXO Salad Spinner: Salads are a big part of the menu in the summer months. This gadget, the salad spinner, comes in handy when you want your oil based dressings to stick to the salad. Lindsey loves it. (They are pretty fun to spin! Get your kids involved!)
Pampered Chef Ice Cream Scoop: Another thing that gets used a lot in the summer is the ice cream scoop. I just purchased the Pampered Chef scoop this year. I don't know how I lived with any other scoop. It cuts through had ice cream really easily and makes nice scoops. It is easy to grip and has a great look as the cherry on top. It may seem pricey for an ice cream scoop, but I am not regretting it!
Air Fryer: Lindsey loves her air fryer! Especially since her husband likes to cook in it, too! It is a great way to have fried food without the oil and extra fat in your diet. You can even bake a cake in it, so no heating up the oven and your kitchen!
Himalayan Rock Salt Night Light: Like I said, we aren't just sticking to kitchen gadgets! Maddy loves her salt night light so much that she got one for me! These night lights glow beautifully and they are natural air purifiers! Even though it gets dark later in the summer, Maddy works late much of the time and this beautiful light is welcoming when she gets home.
What gadgets are you loving right now? Let us know in the comments! Some of these could even make nice Father's Day gifts! ( A little set of clamps, or the air fryer? How about the ice cream scoop along with his favorite flavor of ice cream?) We would love to see your ideas.
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What is it about St. Patrick's Day that makes everyone want to celebrate it even if you aren't Irish? After doing our DNA tests my kids found out that they do have some Irish heritage through my husband's line, but not mine. We don't drink beer, which seems like a traditional way of celebrating the day. But still, if you look through our posts over the last few years, there is usually something about St. Patrick's Day every year! Maybe it is the beautiful Irish accent or the idea of pots of gold at the end of the rainbow. Whatever it is, for today's Friday Faves, we are honoring St. Patrick's Day once again.
Here are the things my family has always looked forward to, and then I will share one new special thing:
We have an entire section about St. Patrick's Day on our blog where we share food, party ideas and printables to help you do little things to mark the day with your children and family! These little Rice Krispies Treats Pots of Gold can be made so that they are vegan if you use vegan marshmallows!
Now, here is the one more special thing that I told you about. For many years now, one thing that is always fun to do for St. Patrick's Day is to go to McDonald's and get a Shamrock Shake. It is a minty green nod to the holiday. I already had mine for this year, and I wondered if there was a way that I could make something similar for my vegan Maddy. Here is what I came up with!
I used Tofutti, a vegan cream cheese, almond milk Reddi Whip, and mint Oreos! They were super easy to make, and they taste so good! The Tofutti was available at Sprouts and I purchased the Reddi Whip and the Oreos at the regular grocery store.
I hope you give this recipe a try, and enjoy your St. Patrick's Day this weekend!
Currently on Panna Cooking: Sautéed Scallops with Asparagus Purée by MICHAEL RUHLMAN
Creators of Hot Cocoa Bombs! (copyrighted)
Helen Reynolds: Mother of six children , grandmother to ten and counting! I love to cook, craft and create things and I especially love doing that with my family, So, when my lawyer daughter, Lindsey, and my artist daughter, Madalynn, and I came up with the idea of Hot Cocoa Bombs, this blog was born. Then, one more daughter, with her technical and science skills, plus creativity has joined in to round us out! Read more about us here!
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