Author: Mike Vrobel

Instant Pot Sloppy Top Round Sandwich in a bun on a white plate with a pickle and potato chips, with a cola in the background

Instant Pot Sloppy Top Round Sandwiches with Certified Angus Beef® Brand

Instant Pot Sloppy Top Round Sandwiches  Photo courtesy of Certified Angus Beef® Brand  Instant Pot Sloppy Top Round Sandwiches. Recipe created for the Certified Angus Beef® Brand. Check them out at hashtag #BestAngusBeef and #SteakLover for more beef recipes, or join them in the Certified Angus Beef Kitchen group on Facebook. Sloppy Joes? Shredded beef? Why not both? My friends at Certified Angus Beef® Brand  commissioned me to write Instant Pot recipes using their fantastic beef, starting with these sloppy top round sandwiches. “Sloppy Tops,” as Chef Gavin Pinto calls them. Their version of the recipe is here: Instant Pot Sloppy Top Sandwiches [CertifiedAngusBeef.com] I also spent the a day at Certified Angus Beef® Brand headquarters (just down the road from me in Wooster, Ohio), doing a professional photo shoot of my recipes. I got to see how photographer Mark Merryweather worked with food stylist Bonnie, Chef Gavin, and Chef Michael Ollier to plate, style, and photograph these fantastic sandwiches. Thanks again for the pictures, and enjoy the recipe, everyone! Print Instant Pot Sloppy Top …

A teal bowl of cooked flageolet beans with chunks of lamb and carrot and a sprinkling of thyme leaves on top from the recipe Instant Pot Flageolet Beans with Lamb

Instant Pot Flageolet Beans with Lamb

Instant Pot Flageolet Beans with Lamb I got a bag of flageolet beans in my Rancho Gordo bean box and immediately thought of France. Instant Pot Flageolet Beans with Lamb, here we come! This recipe is in memory of Peter Mayle, author of A Year in Provence. He is a large part of why I’m writing this blog; I vicariously visited the south of France through his books, dreaming of lavender and sunshine. Ten years ago I got to live that dream, traveling to Provence and Paris, and taking cooking classes. Six months after that, energized by the trip, I started writing Dad Cooks Dinner. Unfortunately, Mr. Mayle passed away last month at age 78. His last book, My Twenty-Five Years in Provence, is sitting unread on my bedside table. I don’t have the courage to open it yet. Au revoir, Mr. Mayle, and thank you for the inspiration. Flageolet beans (pronounced Fla-zhoh-lay) are small beans, some white, some pale green. They remind me a lot of navy beans and are as Traditional French as …

Do Not Wash Chicken Before Cooking!

A question from a reader: Marinating chicken…contained in a bag, in a baking dish to catch any drips Is it best to wash the chicken off after removing from package or not? I hear conflicting advice on this. Some say to wash off any germs from packing and some say it’s doesn’t matter b/c the germs are cooked off. Should I wash chicken? No! Please, no. Do NOT wash poultry before cooking. (Or any other meat for that matter.) Washing chicken doesn’t rinse away bacteria; it splashes it around. The bacteria is still on the chicken…and now it’s been sprayed onto the sink, countertops, arms, clothes, and anything else nearby. The safest thing to do is take chicken directly from its packaging to the stove. Now, I don’t take chicken directly out of the package and to the stove. I usually have to mess with it first – seasoning, cutting it up, that kind of thing. I treat chicken juices like a biohazard – because they are, until they’re cooked – and try to contain …

An orange bowl full of cilantro lime rice with a text block on the bottom saying: Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Rice

Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Rice

Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Rice This recipe for Instant Pot Cilantro Lime Rice came from my kids’ love of Chipotle burritos. I knew I could make them at home, but the kids didn’t believe me. And…ahem…they were right. Until I got the rice right, they kept saying “these are good…but can we go to Chipotle now?” Now they ask “can you make burritos for dinner?” (I have to go on a rant here. It kills me that my kids still think of “Chipotle Burritos” when they’re really Mission Street Burritos. I even took them to a burrito joint in San Francisco, on our one trip to the West Coast, to show them where burritos as big as your head came from. They still think of them as Chipotle burritos. Not that there’s anything wrong with Chipotle; it’s the principle of the thing. San Francisco! Mission street! Authentic burritos! It goes right over their heads. I’ll remind them of the San Francisco visit, and they’ll say “Oh yeah, I loved those!”, and then go right back …

Bag of Happy Rice - Risotto Feliz - From Riceria Ferron in Italy

PicOfTheWeek: Happy Rice!

Happy Rice! Happy Rice! From Italy! One of the leftovers from my trip to Riseria Ferron in the Veneto is the bag of Risotto Felice. I couldn’t pass up the bag with the happy grain of rice “for the kids!” Because what do kids love more than rice with dried vegetables already mixed in? It was great – but the kids wouldn’t touch it. “Ew. What’s all that stuff in there?”

A black paella pan full of paella, bristling with shrimp, mussels, and clams, on a gray wooden table

Throwback Thursday: Paella!

My family demanded paella. Demanded, I tell you! I was packing for my family vacation at our cottage on Lake Erie, and Diane asked if I was bringing my paella pan. When we got there, my brother asked if I brought my pan, and my Dad asked if he could buy the seafood. Paella? of course…once I run back home for the pan, which I forgot to put in the car. (I had to go back for my hernia surgery anyhow. The surgery went fine, thanks for asking.) Paella is THE traditional Spanish dish, with rice, seafood, chorizo, and a pinch of saffron, cooked outdoors over a wood fire. It’s their equivalent of our backyard barbecue – cooked by the guys, gathered around the fire with a tasty beverage to keep them hydrated while they stir the pan over the heat. I make paella on my kettle grill to add that hint of smoke. Paella pans are wide and shallow to cook the rice properly. Which is another reason to use the grill; stove burners …

Lake Erie Vacation 2018

I’m on vacation, spending a week at my family’s cottage on the shores of Lake Erie. Then, the week after that I’m recovering from hernia surgery. (Fun!) In other words, posting will be sparse for the next two weeks. (Cell coverage and wifi are spotty out here.) I’ll be back to my regular schedule in August. See you then! PS:  Amazon’s Prime Day Instant Pot Duo for $58 deal is still on through the end of the day today. Did you get one? Let me know in the comments.

Amazon Prime Day 2018 – Instant Pot Deals? (Yes, on the IP-Duo)

Looking for a deal on an Instant Pot? You’re in luck – it’s Amazon Prime Day! I’m an Amazon affiliate, and I get a small commission on anything you buy through the Amazon links on my site. Thank you! Why is Prime Day such a big deal for Instant Pot fans? Because Amazon traditionally has a fantastic Instant Pot deal on Prime Day for Amazon Prime members. Their lowest prices of the year are on Prime Day and Black Friday. (Side note: Prime “Day” is now Prime Day-And-A-Half, starting at 3 PM EST July 16 (today), running through the end of July 17.) Which Instant Pot is on sale for Prime Day? I don’t know yet, and I’ll update this post when I find out. The sale is usually on one specific model; 2015 and 2016 were on the IP Duo 6-Quart, and 2017 was the IP Duo 8-Quart. What will it be this year? I think it will be one of these six Instant Pots: [UPDATE 2018-07-16 3PM] The sale is on the Instant …

PicOfTheWeek: A Rainbow of Beans

I had to take a picture of my colorful selection of beans, from this month’s Rancho Gordo Bean Club delivery. Beans, left to right: Scarlet Runner Domingo Rojo Yellow Eye Azufrado Flagolet Aluba Blanca How do I cook them? Sorted and rinsed (but not soaked), with 7 cups of water and 1 teaspoon of fine sea salt (and a peeled onion), 35 to 45 minutes at high pressure, depending on the size of the bean, with a natural pressure release. Details here: Pressure Cooker Beans (Basic Technique) What do you think? Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below. Related Posts Pressure Cooker (or Instant Pot) Refried Black Beans Pressure Cooker (or Instant Pot) Santa Maria Pinquito Beans Pressure Cooker (or Instant Pot) Vaquero Beans in Broth My other Pressure Cooker Recipes Enjoyed this post? Want to help out DadCooksDinner? Subscribe to DadCooksDinner via email and share this post with your friends. Want to contribute directly? Donate to my Tip Jar, or buy something from Amazon.com through the links on this site. Thank …

Grill Smoked Trout: trout on a foil sheet, on a grill, with smoking coals on the other side of the grill

Throwback Thursday: Grill Smoked Fish

My grill smoked trout recipe is suddenly popular! I’m not sure what happened, but I all of a sudden I’m getting questions and comments on a post I wrote years ago. That’s a good thing – I love smoked fish, and grill smoking is easy enough to make this one of my go-to appetizers for parties. Now, grill smoked fish are different from cold smoked fish, like smoked salmon or lox. Cold-smoked fish are cooked at 180°F for hours. Grill smoked fish are a cross between “cold smoked” and grilled – they have a similar taste to cold smoked, but a flakier texture. The grill smoked technique is simple: Brine the fish with salt and brown sugar Lay the fish on a sheet of aluminum foil and pat dry Put in a 250°F to 300°F grill with smoking wood until cooked through and flaky, 30 to 90 minutes depending on the fish thickness. Here are my two favorites: Grill Smoked Trout and Grill Smoked Salmon Recipe: Grill Smoked Trout Recipe: Grill Smoked Salmon What do …

Throwback Thursday: Sous Vide Steaks

So, when are you going to embrace cooking Sous Vide? Those steaks are begging for a water bath then a quick sear! Facebook comment But…but…it’s right there, in the menu at the top of the page: Sous Vide. I have dozens of sous vide recipes, from baby back ribs to rack of lamb to salmon. And steaks, oh so many steaks. Sous Vide Peppercorn filet mignon, Strip Steaks with maitre d’hotel butter, Ribeye with Salsa Criolla. I even have a Beer Cooler Sous Vide Grilled New York Strip Steaks recipe, from back before I owned a sous vide circulator. (Which is a great way to test out sous vide – hot water, a beer cooler, a thermometer, zip-top bags, and you’re ready to go.) Because the commenter is right – steaks are begging for a water bath and a quick sear, especially if you love rare to medium-rare beef. I know I’ve focused on Instant Pot recipes recently, but I still sous vide at least a couple of times a month, mainly from frozen. I …