Monday, December 07, 2015

Instant Pot Steamed Eggs

I bought myself a little early Christmas present during a black Friday sale on Amazon. I got the amazing Instant Pot IP-DUO60 7-in-1 Programmable Pressure Cooker for only $78.50. Little did I know it's more than just a pressure cooker. This thing does just about everything. It has various settings for steaming, yogurt, rice and you can even saute in the thing. Had I known it did all these things I would have gotten one earlier. I've only had it out of the box for 3 days and in that time have made 5 different things in it and have enough leftovers to last me the rest of the week. This is what I've made so far:
  1. nom nom paleo's kalua pig
  2. predomenantly paleo's lemon garlic chicken
  3. instant pot's soft boiled eggs
  4. 100 days of real food's pumpkin purée (I used lakota squash)
  5. nom nom paleo's Mexican Beef
Instant Pot On Fresh Eggs in Instant Pot
I thought I would share my experience with using the Instant Pot to make steamed eggs. You may know fresh eggs are a pain in the arse to peel using traditional boiling methods so I always steam the eggs for easy peeling. I decided to use the steam setting on the Instant Pot to make a few boiled (steamed) eggs to see how it does. I didn't realize the recipe I was following was for soft boiled eggs until I got them out of the cooker. Next time I'll try adding 2 more minutes to the time and that should get a nice hard boiled egg. The 4 minute cooking time I used resulted in a nicely cooked white with a yolk that wasn't runny but more a medium consistency.

Steamed Eggs Egg Ice Bath

Instant Pot Medium Soft Steamed Egg

Ingredients:
6 eggs
1 Cup Water

Directions:
  1. Add 1 cup of water to Instant Pot and place wire rack (trivet) in the bottom
  2. Place eggs on wire rack, spacing evenly on the bottom
  3. Close cooker and be sure the valve on the lid is set to "Sealing"
  4. Plug in cooker and push Steam button and reduce time to 4 minutes for medium soft egg (6 minutes should give you a hard boiled egg)
  5. When done, place a cool wet towel over lid and move valve to "Venting" to release steam
  6. Remove lid and using pot holders, remove rack with eggs, drain pot and fill with cold water and ice cubes
  7. Lower rack of eggs into ice water bath, adding more water if needed to cover eggs and cool for 5 minutes
  8. Remove and enjoy or refrigerate 
I had one of my 6 eggs crack during cooking. I've seen various recommendations to reduce the chance of eggs cracking which include using a steamer basket, placing eggs in cookie cutters or canning lids.

Semi Soft Boiled EggEgg Topped Salad

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

2015 Chicken Additions

Over the past 4 months my flock of chickens has grown by 6 so I thought I would give an introduction now that they are nearly all grown up.

This is Agnes, a silver laced wyandotte. I always thought wyandottes were one of the prettiest breeds and they are also known to be one of the most docile and friendly. She joined my flock the beginning of October. She was delivered to me by a neighbor who was having trouble with her bullying his other girls. She's a young girl that just started laying so I was happy to see if she would get along with my girls. We decided to just put her in the run with no introduction period to "give her a taste of her own medicine". I was skeptical and a little scared she would get beat up. We kept a close eye on her and was surprised how well it actually went. They didn't welcome her with open wings but there wasn't much fighting other than Lucy but she likes to fight with everyone. Now they seem to be best buds and frequently hang out together when free ranging. Agnes held her own quite well and moved up the pecking order pretty quickly and has settled in around #3 or #4. She's currently my most regular layer but is still laying her baby eggs that are much smaller than the rest of the girls. The first couple of weeks she laid her eggs in the chicken run but has finally figured out the proper place to lay them and now leaves them for me in one of the bottom nesting boxes while everyone else lays in the top boxes. I'm glad I was able to provide a home for her and that she didn't end up in a soup pot.

The other 5 additions are now 4 months old and came to me as fertilized eggs from someone I met in a local chicken Facebook group. Bailey, one of my buff orpingtons, had been broody for 3 weeks and didn't show any sign of breaking out of it. I saw a post on the group about someone having fertilized olive egger eggs for sale and decided to give it a try. I've been wanting to add some olive eggs to my already colorful egg basket. I brought 5 eggs home and gave them to Bailey to sit on. After being broody for 3 weeks, I wasn't sure if she would be up for sitting on some eggs for 3 more weeks. I marked the eggs with a pencil just in case some more eggs happened to appear in her box and I'm glad I did because I found 2 more eggs in her box and was able to remove them.

On day 21 (July 29) all 5 eggs hatched. The day after they hatched I moved Bailey and the babies to a sectioned off corner of the chicken run with a brooder so the others wouldn't bother them. After a couple of weeks I let the babies and mom out with the others, with supervision, until I was confident Bailey would be able to protect them. Luckily Bailey is the top of the pecking order and if anyone even looked at her babies they got chased away. She was a great mom and hope she will be able to raise more babies for me in the future. At about 2 or 3 weeks it was clear I had two boys and three girls. The boys got their combs and wattles well before the girls. Their biological parents are a black copper marans hen and either a blue or black Isbar roo. Only two of them look alike and the rest are pretty easy to tell apart. The girls should start laying in a couple months and the boys are now crowing like there's no tomorrow and starting to get the urge to procreate.

Calypso and Oliver



Izzie and Shylo



Onyx