I pulled out the pressure cooker for the first time in a long time. John actually uses it more than I do, mostly for sweet potatoes and pumpkin. Anyway, I have been craving beef stew for quite a while now and finally got around to doing this. I was going to use the slow cooker, but that takes all day for beef stew, and I figured I would do something different.
Anyhoo, this recipe comes from the book I got from the library that I mentioned last week Cook it Slow, Cook it Fast from Mr. Food Test Kitchen. This book has a lot of yummy sounding recipes in it, too. This is the Quick as a Wink Beef stew. It’s not actually quick as a wink, but for stew it’s pretty fast LOL.
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 to 1.5 pounds of stew beef, cut into 1 inch cubes (it calls for 2 pounds, but I got this size package)
- 1 tablespoon oil – I used coconut
- 1/4 cup of chopped onion
- 2 pounds of potatoes cut into large cubes
- 2 to 3 carrots cut into chunks
- 1.5 cups of broth
- A 15 ounce can of diced tomatoes with juice
- 1/2 teaspoon of browing agent
I cheated a little and used frozen carrots:
and onions for that matter…
In a bowl, mix the flour, salt and pepper. Add the meat and toss to coat. In the pressure cooker, add the oil and brown the meat for 5 minutes or so. I like to do this in a couple batches. If you have too much meat in the pan, you end up steaming the meat because of the liquid.
Then add in all the rest of the ingredients except for the browning agent.
Cover and bring to pressure. It takes a few minutes to come up to pressure, but the indicator will pop up like this:
Or whatever indicator the pot has. Now turn the heat down to medium low and maintain pressure for 8 minutes. If the button falls down, the heat is too low and you have to bring it back up to pressure. The nice thing about current pressure cookers is that they are safe. No more blowing lids and peeling your dinner off the ceiling. They have a pressure release valve that will automatically release pressure if it gets too high. I have seen that in action, so I know it works.
Anyway, after 8 minutes, do a natural release, which is removing the pressure cooker from the heat and letting the pressure come down on its own. It took about 10 minutes or so for me. The little button will fall back down.
(FYI – a quick release is where you turn the knob to the steam vent setting and it will release the steam all at once. It’s pretty loud when it does that, but it only takes about 30 seconds.) Then carefully open the lid. Now for the browning agent.
This is a suprisingly flavorful add in, plus it darkens the color. You don’t need much, just 1/2 a teaspoon.
Yum, right? Then serve!
The nice thing about the pressure cooker is that it makes the meat really, really tender, but not mushy. I love the slow cooker, but sometimes the pressure cooker seems a little more fresh tasting, if that makes sense. Because of the shorter cooking time.
Since John is a vegetarian, obviously he will not be eating any of this, so I am set for a fair number of meals LOL. Unless anyone wants to come over and have some!
What do you cook in the pressure cooker?