Under Pressure Beef Stew

I have a new love – my pressure cooker! In a fit of spring-cleaning on Thursday, I found the forlorn, never-used, and undeniably fabulous cooking vessel in the rear of a cabinet. It’s been sitting back there for over 5 years, at least. Why hadn’t I used it? Frankly, I was scared of it. I had nightmarish visions of food spewing out, lava-like, onto the kitchen ceiling. In that very moment, I decided to conquer my fear and forge ahead – I would make beef stew! Fortuitously, I had 2 pounds of boneless short ribs defrosting in my refrigerator, along with carrots and celery, just begging to be part of the melee. Onions and garlic in the pantry rounded out the seasoning.
It was, by far, the tastiest beef stew I’ve made. I’m totally serious, this was some GOOD stew – tender unctuous beef, well-seasoned gravy, and the best part, it took 50 minutes (cooking time), start to finish. How does that sound to you? Unbelievable? Amazing? Oh my God, I need one of those? Yes, you need one if you don’t have one. If you have one and don’t use it, get it out and start cooking! If you have one and use it, send me some recipes. I’ve got some ideas brewing – don’t worry, I’ll share them with you!

Under Pressure Beef Stew Printable recipe
2 lbs boneless short ribs cut into 2-3 inch chunks
4 stalks celery, diced
2 onions, diced
4 carrots cut into chunks
2 tablespoons garlic
1 bay leaf
2 cups water
1 cup flour, for dredging
¼ teaspoon dried thyme, or 2 fresh sprigs
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon cayenne, optional
4 tablespoons unsalted butter and 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided (You may need more)
Hot, cooked rice

Measure 1 cup flour into a gallon-size plastic bag. Toss in the meat and shake until well coated; remove onto a piece of parchment or wax paper.
In the pressure cooker over medium-high heat, combine 2 tablespoons of butter with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Once butter has melted, add the meat. Be careful not to crowd the pieces – you want to caramelize the meat, not steam it. I had to brown the meat in 3 batches. Brown meat on all sides and remove to a plate. Continue with the remaining meat, until all pieces have been browned. If during the browning process you notice that there is no butter and oil, add more.
Once all of the meat has been browned, add the onions, garlic, celery, carrots, and bay leaf. If the pot is dry, add more butter and olive oil. Sauté the mixture until the edges of the onions are starting to brown. Return the meat to the pot, and add the dry thyme or thyme sprigs, salt and pepper(s). Pour in 2 cups of water and stir to combine. Cover the pot, and cook according to the manufacturer’s directions. My stew cooked for 40 minutes.
Ladle stew over rice and enjoy!

Tomorrow…..macarons

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