Recipe Roundup: Get pressure cooking!
by Cally Peterson
When she was deployed stateside in 2018, Capital Electric Cooperative member Shaundra Ziemann-Bolinske spent a lot of time with her electric multicooker. She experimented with recipes and honed her pressure-cooking skills. It was a way to keep her mind off all she was missing out on that year.
As a nearly 20-year active member of the U.S. Army Reserves, the Hazen native had been deployed before. She served in the 2008-10 campaign of Operation Iraqi Freedom, earning a Bronze Star Medal and a Combat Medical Badge as the executive officer of a forward surgical team.
“It was life-changing,” Ziemann-Bolinske says.
Her second deployment was life-changing, too. By this time, Ziemann-Bolinske was a wife to Bob, a busy lawyer, and a mom to two equally busy little boys, ages 3 and 1 ½. She had been a family and community wellness agent with NDSU Extension – Burleigh County for several years. It was a job she loved, and one that fit with the family life she wanted, too.
“I love working in Burleigh County. Extension provides information that is anti-bias and research-based,” Shaundra says. “Working in public education allows you to use your background to bring to the local population.”
In addition to her military service, Shaundra’s background includes stints with General Mills Inc., as a food science technician, and Cloverdale Foods Co., as the food safety and quality control director. She studied at Bismarck State College for a year before graduating from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. There, she faced a choice: dentistry or food science?
“I chose food, because that was my love,” she says.
Returning from her first deployment, Shaundra moved home to North Dakota, desiring to be closer to family. She met her husband a week later.
“Our connection was food,” she says.
Today, Shaundra uses her knowledge of food and nutrition both in her Extension job and to nourish her growing family. She is due with their third child – a girl – later this month.
“Healthful and nutritious eating is a lifestyle. Making sure my family has the knowledge and skills to make those healthy choices – it’s everything to me,” she says.
Her advice to families is simple: “Just keep introducing healthy choices every time you eat.” If you’re in a pinch and have to grab a boxed meal, that’s OK. Add a vegetable to it.
Shaundra recalls a time when her husband had to go with a quick boxed mac and cheese dinner.
“My son said, ‘Dad, I don’t like my mac and cheese without broccoli!’” she recalls. With no broccoli at home, Shaundra’s son happily settled for spinach.
“One of the best edges you can give your child is sitting down to eat a meal,” she says.
Shaundra has found the pressure cooker to be an advantageous tool in the kitchen.
“It’s actually your best friend when you’re busy. You can turn a recipe that takes hours into minutes,” she says.
Conversion charts for turning stovetop, oven or slow cooker recipes into pressure cooker versions can be found online or through the pressure cooker manufacturer.
Plus, pressure cooking aids in digestion.
“Pressure cooking also helps break down the starches and sugars, and even proteins, that can be hard on the body,” she says.
Shaundra encourages readers to not be afraid to give pressure cooking a try. Do the research and find the model that works best for you.
“There are so many fail-safes on these units,” she says. “I love the pressure cooker!”
NDSU Extension has developed many resources to help individuals find pressure cooking success. A new handout focuses on pressure cooking dry beans and offers pressure cooker tips, helpful information on beans and recipes. NDSU Extension agent and Capital Electric Cooperative member Shaundra Ziemann-Bolinske joined us in the North Dakota Living test kitchen this month to try two of the recipes – classic chili and red beans and sausage.
Visit www.ndsu.edu/extension to learn more.
RECIPES by NDSU Extension
1 cup pinto beans, dry
SHAUNDRA’S NOTE: To aid in digestion, try soaking your beans overnight in the saltwater mixture. Certain nondigestible carbohydrates in beans, called oligosaccharides, are to blame for intestinal gas and stomach discomfort. The longer dry beans soak, the more those gas-producing carbohydrates are released into the soaking water.
Makes 12 servings. Per serving nutrition: 200 calories, 5 g. fat, 24 g. carbohydrates, 7 g. fiber and 420 mg. sodium.
RED BEANS AND SAUSAGE
1 lb. kidney beans, dry
NOTE: This recipe has Louisiana roots. “Red beans and rice” is a traditional Cajun dish of the South. For traditional kick, serve with a splash of your favorite hot sauce. This would be a great dish to serve at your Mardi Gras party in February!
Makes 12 servings. Per serving nutrition: 240 calories, 9 g. fat, 16 g. protein, 26 g. carbohydrates, 10 g. fiber and 680 mg. sodium.
Cally Peterson is editor of North Dakota Living. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.