Pressure Cooker Split Pea and Ham Soup – with a Spanish Twist

This is a great, quick  self-care recipe for low energy days because:

  1. with a pressure cooker, it takes just long enough to wash up what’s in the sink (about 15 minutes)
  2. Split peas are cheap and last a long time in a cupboard, as do potatoes
  3. It uses 5 ingredients (excluding oil for frying first). but could be made with just 2 ingredients.
  4. It tastes great, is very filling, but easy to digest

We got our split peas from a store nearby called Pepito y Grano, which stocks every lentil an grain imaginable – including teff! It also stocks many gluten-free types of pasta, including ones made from lentils and chickpeas. If you love cooking outside traditional Spanish food in Madrid, it’s a must-visit.


  1. Half a cup of split peas. I rinsed these and left them to soak for an hour. Longer in colder weather will help their digestibility.
  2.  Half a white onion, chopped.
  3. 1 small potato, peeled and cubed.
  4. A pack of diced ham. We used a pack of diced serrano, which is sold in Carrefour all over Madrid.
  5. Ham stock, liquid. I could have skipped ingredients 2, 3 and 4, and just used this for a more “budget” or “no grocery shop” version, since it already includes them. We loved the way it tasted and the texture of this version, though.

Bonus Points:

I added about a teaspoon of dried mint to give this a little kick. It doesn’t taste like toothpaste, it just balances the ham taste out and makes a hot soup feel more “right” in the summertime.


  1. Fry the onions in a little oil, until soft and add the potato
  2. Drain the split peas and add to the pan, stirring to avoid having them stick
  3. Add the diced ham/Serrano and then add half the stock (about 300 ml)
  4. Bring to pressure and eave for 15 minutes. Then let it release pressure naturally.
  5. Use a slotted spoon to mash the peas a little bit. You could use a handheld blender, but the mix of smooth and chunky is a feature.
  6. Enjoy!


I didn’t take any pics because this was one of those recipes that came about from needing something easy and quick to cook and we were too hungry to fuss with photos.

Nom-tember recipes

Or, “fall recipes I’m excited about trying”.

The amazing thing about Yummly is that it does deliver these gluten-free, paleo, and vegan recipes into my inbox.

I’m not vegan, but since I allergic to anything from the sea that isn’t seaweed, my meat-free meals are essentially vegan meals.


  1. Beetroot, Celeriac and Fig Salad, porridge & papaya porridge
  2. Paleo, gluten-free and vegan burgers (hint: here be cauliflower)
  3. Maple roasted Brussel sprouts with pomegranate. Pomegranate is pricy AF, tho, but looks pretty.
  4. (bonus!) Rainbow power salad with roasted chickpeas

South Indian Dhal Slow cooker recipe

As it goes into the slow cooker. So simple!

Note: This recipe is taken from The Indian Slow Cooker, but as written, it makes a LOT (11 freaking cups!!). So, I started an allrecipes profile in the hopes that the ‘change servings’ option will be useful to people not intending to feed an army. It turns out that recipes on there require editorial review before that feature is available, so I’m double publishing. 

Pink lentils, spices and curry leaves give this simple dish an amazing flavour. The prep time assumes you have your spices somewhere that is not at the top back of that unreachable shelf in the kitchen. Otherwise, this recipe is pretty much a dump-and-run, except for chopping the tomatoes and onions. The amount of salt might seem crazy, but remember that the lentils will expand and make a lot of dhal, so you will miss it if you add less at the beginning. This dish goes great with some fried poppadoms and mango chutney. Continue reading

Gorgeous aternatives to glass straws

Gorgeous aternatives to glass straws


Kitchen gadgets tool
€18 –

Kitchen gadgets tool
€12 –

Kitchen gadgets tool
€8,96 –

Kitchen gadgets tool
€5,40 –

Gold jewelry
€2.475 –

My favourite kitchen items for allergy cooking

There’s cooking, and there’s allergy cooking. Cooking is something most people do once or twice a week, in between takeout, eating out, and buying prepared or semi prepared meals for preparing at home.

Allergy cooking happens every day. When you have deadlines, when you have tickets to the ballet at 8, when you’re sick,  even when you’re traveling.

So, to speed this process up and eat the foods I miss AND stay on budget, there are tools.

Summer recipe find & Kitchen haul: Grilled Zucchini Roll-Ups with cream “cheese” and Herbs

This recipe would go great with gazpacho in the Madrid summer heat, and is just begging to be made with the dairy and soy free cream cheese I found at Planeta Vegano in Lavapies. Bonus points: the store delivers!!

Recipe: Grilled Zucchini Roll-Ups with Ricotta and Herbs — Appetizer Recipes from The Kitchn
Grilled Zucchini Roll-Ups with Ricotta and Herbs — Appetizer Recipes from The

In addition to having dairy and soy free cream cheese, the same brand also has smoked and mozzarella flavors available at planeta vegano. They’re not meltable like Daiya, but they are very, very good on toast, in sandwiches, on home-made pizza, and in salads in place of feta.

The store also has nutritional yeast flakes available to order online, but I do recommend going to the store in person, because they also have Booja Booja ice cream which isn’t available for sale in the online store. When I went in, they had Hanky Panky Chocolate flavour, Keep Smiling Vanilla M’Gorilla (the flavour that converted me from cynicism about a desert made from blended cashews!), and possibly my new favourite flavour of any type of ice cream ever, Fiesty Rollercoaster Ginger.

One more thing:


I seem to have accumulated more kitchen stuff. The pyrex dish is to fit inside my 5.7 Litre slow cooker in case I want to cook smaller amounts of food. You can of course simply put less food into the slow cooker, but it affects the cooking time in an unpredictable way if you fill it less than halfway, and food may get overdone. Putting in a heat-proof dish effectively gives you two sizes of slow cooker with the same cooking times: a larger one for making food for up to 8 people (with my size of crock pot, at least), and a smaller one for when it’s just you and you don’t want to eat the same meal for the next two weeks – which has happened when my partner’s been travelling. The steamer is for inserting inside my pressure cooker.

I play for both teams when cooking: slow and fast cooking.

Slow cooker “dump and run” recipe: ‘creamy’ chicken, mixed mushrooms and artichoke

This took less than 15 minutes to get ready right before heading out to watch The Minions on saturday night, including taking the food out of the grocery bags and freezer and packing everything away after.


  • 1 large spring onion (the onion part was decent-sized). I could have used regular onion, but I like the flavour the green parts add. And this is what I had in the fridge.
  • 1 packet of chicken breasts.
  • half a packet of carrefour frozen mixed mushrooms (maybe 100 grams?) or any frozen mushroom mix. This was a mix that includes shitake and other varieties.
  • Frozen artichokes (again, I just grabbed carrefour brand. Frozen veggies are my salvation on busy days and there’s never too much frozen veg). I have no idea how much I used. I just added until I thought “that’s enough”.
  • 1/4 can of coconut milk. Really, just the thick creamy part of the top of the unshaken can + a little milk. You could use regular creme fresh, or sour cream, though.
  • a good shake of apple cider vinegar.
  • 1 teaspoon of dijon mustard (I would have added more, but that’s all we had left in the bottle. I’m happy with the result as it is, where you don’t taste it but it has flavour)
  • I didn’t have garlic so used a liberal shaking of dried garlic granules, but would always prefer real garlic.
  • herbs de Provence
  • a small bay leaf
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 chicken stock cube (I used my home made paste)
  • 100 ml boiled water
  • Frozen peas

Method: brush inside of slow cooker with olive oil & start the kettle. Put sliced onions (green and white parts) on the bottom of slow cooker(if using real garlic, put that in now too), put chicken on top of that as evenly as space allows. On top of that, add the coconut cream and milk. Add boiled water. Stir in the mustard & chicken stock cube. Add bayleaf. Shake on herbs & garlic, add vinegar. Bang bag of peas on the counter to loosen up the frozen peas and dump in (as much as you think looks fine. I like a lot). Put on the lid and cook for 4:30 hours on high (because of the frozen veggies).

Before serving, I shredded the chicken with a fork. You could cut the chicken breasts before adding to the crock pot, but since I was running late, this was fine, and I like the shredded texture.

I recommend serving with rice or mashed potatoes to absorb the creamy goodness.