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The Meat

July 3, 2019

Good morning, foodie friends,

Summer is in full swing, which means plenty of birthday parties, potlucks and impromptu neighborhood cookouts at my house. 

The only problem is, I don’t really want to cook anything. Last weekend, we hosted a small birthday celebration for my aunt — complete with a Captain Jake and the Neverland Pirates balloon that my sweet boy was convinced was perfect for a 65th birthday party. That humid morning, when faced with the impending doom of turning on my oven to bake a cake, I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.

But what, oh what is a baker to do? Turn to her trusty Instant Pot, of course. “But Lindsey,” you must be saying to yourself, “Instant Pots are for soup, silly features editor!” You are right, dear reader, but apparently, it’s also for baking a super easy, moist cake.

Simply make your favorite box mix cake and pour into two 6-inch, or 7-inch cake pans and cover each tightly with foil. Put 1 ½ cups of water in the pot and place one cake pan on your pot insert and cook on high pressure for 35 minutes, then let naturally release for 10 minutes. Repeat with the second layer. Sure, this takes longer than popping it in the oven, but I was able to make a sweet little cake without heating up my kitchen.

I also turned to this great, classic recipe for Strawberry Pretzel Salad — the perfect salty-sweet combo that gives the tasty nod to Jello. It’s super easy to make and only requires 10 minutes of oven time. Or, if you’re invited to a picnic tomorrow, maybe make one of these classic side salads that are always a hit. 

Happy Fourth of July!
Lindsey Hollenbaugh
Managing editor of Features

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