When a major publisher knocks on your door (or your agent’s door) and asks you if you’d like to write a book that combines two of your favorite things (The Instant Pot and Italian food), you say, “Si, per certo!” and get to work.
This last year I had the opportunity to fall more deeply in love with my Instant Pot AND got to use my experience living and working in Italy to write a book with 100 Italian recipes for the Instant Pot. Truly more fun was never had.
If you’re not familiar, the Instant Pot is an electric pressure cooker that cooks food quickly, infuses dishes with flavor, turns tough cuts of meat into rib-sticking ragus in a quarter of the time, and makes incredible one-pot meals. It’s also a rice cooker, a steamer, sautés, and even slow cooks food. People are taking to it with all the fervor of a new religion. If you need proof, the first print run of my Italian Instant Pot book was 100,000 copies! (That’s breath taking.)
In my book, you’ll find comfort food favorites like Chicago Italian Beef Sandwiches with Instant Pot Giardiniera (quick pickled veggies), creamy 1-pot Spaghetti Carbonara, buttery Rosemary Focaccia, and Italian Stuffed Artichokes. But there is also regional Italian dishes that you won’t find in the dump-it-and-forget it blogosphere–Savory Parmesan Custards with Red Bell Pepper Sauce; Porcini Dumplings in IP Chicken Broth; Venetian Duck Ragu; Beef Braciole; and even a desserts, including a seriously awesome Sicilian Cassata with Instant Pot homemade ricotta. (Yes, you can make ricotta in your IP!)
But don’t take my word for it. Get a copy here. Here. Or here. While you wait for the book to arrive (the publication date is February 6th), try this recipe for 1-pot Farfalle with Sausage Meatballs, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, and Arugula, and be sure to tag me on Instagram (ivy_manning).
And don’t forget to enter the book giveaway! I’ll be sending 3 copies to random winners (US residents only) who comment in response to this question by 2/14: “What is your favorite Italian dish of all time?”
Farfalle with Sausage Meatballs, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, and Arugula
Serves 4 | Active time: 20 minutes | Total time: 35 minutes
This lovely pasta is made up of ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen, so it’s sure to become a go-to on busy weeknights. The recipe is endlessly adaptable—make it lighter by using turkey sausage; substitute chopped dandelion greens, escarole, or baby kale for the arugula; or use jarred roasted red peppers instead of the sun-dried tomatoes.
8 ounces bulk sweet Italian pork sausage
1 tablespoon olive oil
12 ounces dry (uncooked) farfalle pasta
2 cups low- sodium store-bought chicken broth
1 small yellow onion, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced through the root end (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup oil- packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped
4 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper
2 cups loosely packed baby arugula leaves
1/2 cup grated Pecorino romano cheese
1 Form the sausage into dabs that are about 1 tablespoon each—no need to roll them into perfect spheres (rustic is good). Put the oil in the pot, select SAUTÉ, and adjust to NORMAL/MEDIUM heat. When the oil is hot, add the sausage dabs and cook them, without stirring, for a few minutes. Stir gently and cook until browned on a second side; they don’t need to be cooked through, as they’ll finish cooking with the pasta. Press CANCEL.
2 Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat in the pot. Add the pasta, broth, onion, sun- dried tomatoes, garlic, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt, several grinds of pepper, and 1 cup cold water. Stir to combine.
3 Lock on the lid, select the PRESSURE COOK function, and adjust to LOW pressure for 6 minutes. Make sure the steam valve is in the “Sealing” position and that the “Keep Warm” button is off.
4 When the cooking time is up, quick- release the pressure. Remove the lid, stir, and let the pasta stand in the pot, uncovered, for 5 minutes to allow the sauce to thicken. Add the arugula and cheese and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
—recipe and image from Instant Pot Italian, by Ivy Manning (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2018), photos by Lauren Volo, 2017, All rights reserved