Cherry Sriracha Baby Back Ribs

No grill? Celebrate the Holiday With These Easy Ribs!

Ribs Plate3

Talk about falling-off-the-bone tender. These were practically leaping off the bone. In fact, I had to point at my plate and in a stern voice, shout “Stay!”

Ok, that may have never happened, but the falling off the bone part is true. The rest may have been a delusion due to my being a bit under the weather this weekend, which is also why this post is a little later than usual, but it is worth the wait for this tasty treat. This would be good for your 4th of July party if you don’t have a grill, or if you want something in addition to your grilled foods.

Cherry Sriracha Ribs Ingredients

It’s not quite as sweet as it sounds, the Sriracha Sauce helps temper that a little.

Start by cutting about 5 pounds of ribs (2 slabs comes out to about the correct weight) into pieces small enough to fit in the pressure cooker.

Ribs In Pan
Rub them with Montreal seasoning (or seasoning of your choice such as seasoned salt). I have been using a lot of this Montreal Seasoning lately. Partly because it is tasty, and partly because I went shopping at the local warehouse store, so I came home with what is quite possibly a lifetime supply. They must release some kind of drug into the air vents in those stores, because it always seems like a good idea at the time to buy a container of seasoning that causes you to have to tie your trunk shut for the ride home.

Heat 3 tablespoons of oil in the pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat.

In batches, brown the ribs (meat side only), removing them to a plate as you go. I probably really needed a platter because the ribs were stacked precariously high on the plate. I dubbed it “Mt. Ribmore”.

Ribs Stacked3
Toss a chopped onion in the pot and sauté it until it is translucent.

Add in four cloves of garlic (run through a press), a couple tablespoons fresh ginger (about a thumb sized piece, chopped) and a teaspoon of dry mustard and continue to sauté for another minute.

Ginger Piece

Now, add a jar (about 12-13 ounces. If you have a larger jar, measure about a cup) cherry preserves, 1 bottle (12 ounces) cola, 1/4 cup Sriracha, 4 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 cup catsup, 2 tablespoons rice vinegar, and 1 teaspoon each sesame oil and liquid smoke. I always look for catsup and cola without high-fructose corn syrup. I know, it might seem strange considering other things I eat that HFCS is where I draw the line, but that’s just the way I am.

At this point, add in a little salt and pepper and return the meat to the pot.

Cover the pressure cooker and adjust heat to high and bring to high pressure.

When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure and set the timer for 40 minutes.

When time is up, let pressure come down on its own for ten minutes, then do a quick release.

Remove the ribs to a plate.

Adjust heat to medium-high and let simmer the sauce for about 7 minutes or so.

Sauce Reducing

Remove the sauce from heat.

You can use sauce as is (rustic style), but I prefer to whizz it with an immersion blender for a few seconds.

Sauce Blending
Serve the ribs with some sauce on top and some on the side.

Ribs Plate2

Cherry Sriracha Baby Back Ribs
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Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-6 servings
A sweet and spicy sauce with a slight Asian twist makes these tasty ribs perfect for your next get-toghether
Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons cooking oil
  • Montreal seasoning (for rubbing meat)
  • 5 pounds baby back ribs
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2 tablespoons ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 jar cherry preserves (about 12-13 oz. jar)
  • 1 12 oz. bottle cola
  • ¼ cup Sriracha chile sauce
  • 1 cup catsup
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • A few grinds of black pepper
Instructions
  1. Cut ribs into pieces small enough to fit in pressure cooker
  2. Rub with Montreal seasoning (or seasoning of your choice such as seasoned salt)
  3. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat
  4. In batches, brown ribs on meat side only, then remove to plate
  5. Toss onions in the pot and sauté until they are translucent
  6. Add in the garlic, ginger and dry mustard and continue to sauté another minute
  7. Add in the cherry preserves, cola, Sriracha, soy sauce, catsup, vinegar, sesame oil and liquid smoke
  8. Add in the salt and pepper
  9. Return meat to pot
  10. Cover the pressure cooker and adjust heat to high
  11. When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure and set timer for 40 minutes
  12. When time is up, let pressure come down on its own for ten minutes, then do a quick release
  13. Remove ribs to a plate
  14. Adjust heat to medium-high and let simmer for five minutes or so
  15. Remove from heat
  16. You can use sauce as is (rustic style), but I prefer to whizz it with an immersion blender
  17. Serve ribs with some sauce on top and some on the side

 

Pressure Cooker Taco Pasta

This Ain’t No Hamburger Helper!

Taco Pasta Plate1

Now that summer is upon us, I try to make a lot of super quick meals, so as not to generate any more heat than is necessary in the kitchen. This is based on the classic dish that is sometimes know as “goulash”, but I just can’t get myself to call it that, since it bears no resemblance to actual goulash.

Taco Pasta Ingredients

The version as written is quite spicy, but you can leave out as many of the jalapeños as you like, or replace them with canned mild green chiles.

I don’t often use packaged seasoning, but recently I’ve added some of them to  my repertoire (such as in my Atlanta Brisket recipe) to save time during the summer months. But I do try to avoid ingredients such as MSG.

So let’s get started on it now, so you have time to take a dip in the pool after preparing the meal:

Heat a couple tablespoons cooking oil in the pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat.

Add the ground beef, chopping it up as it cooks, until no longer pink, then move beef to the side and add the chopped onion. Sauté the onion until it starts to soften.

Ground Beef Browning

Stir the beef and onion together, then add the taco seasoning and stir it together.

Beef Onion Taco Seasoning

Add in the Ro-Tel, olives, jalapeños and the macaroni and stir everything together well.

Beef Rotel Mixture

 

Pour in the beef broth until macaroni is covered (I used the entire 32 oz. carton, but it might vary depending on your pasta).
For stove top pressure cooker, cover and turn heat to high until LOW pressure is reached, then adjust heat to maintain low pressure.
For electric pressure cooker, turn off sauté mode, put top on cooker and set for LOW pressure.

Macaroni

The general rule for pressure cooking pasta is to cook it for half the time that is specified on the pasta package for al dente pasta, but I prefer slightly softer than al dente, so I usually cook it half the specified time plus 1 minute and it turns out just the way I like it. In this case, the macaroni package specified 8 minutes, so I set the timer for 5 minutes (four minutes, plus 1 minute).

When time is up, turn off heat and do a quick release.

Remove top and stir everything together.

Cheese Shredded

Add in about half of the cheese (about 1-1/2 cups), reserving the rest for topping.  Add in about 1/4 cup of the sour cream.

Give it a stir and let it sit for a minute or so.

Stir it once more, then serve on plates, topping with the reserved cheese and sour cream.

Taco Pasta Plate 4

Pressure Cooker Taco Pasta
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Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Comfort Food
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6-8 servings
A South-of-the-Border take on the classic Macaroni & Beef. A perfect weeknight meal made super quick in the pressure cooker.
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 1-1.5 pounds ground beef
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 envelope taco seasoning
  • 1 box (16 oz.) elbow macaroni
  • 2 cans (10 oz. each) Ro-Tel
  • 1 can (4 0z.) sliced black olives
  • 1 can (3 oz.) diced jalapeños (if you prefer it less spicy, you can use less or substitute canned mild green chiles instead)
  • 1 quart (approximately) beef broth
  • 8 oz. shredded sharp cheddar, or cheese of your choice
  • ¼ cup sour cream, plus more for topping
Instructions
  1. Heat a couple tablespoons cooking oil in the pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat
  2. Add ground beef, chopping it up as it cooks, until no longer pink
  3. Move beef to the side and add the chopped onion
  4. Sauté the onion until it starts to soften
  5. Stir the beef and onion together
  6. Add the taco seasoning and stir
  7. Add in the Ro-Tel, olives and jalapeños
  8. Dump in the macaroni
  9. Stir everything together well
  10. Pour in the beef broth until macaroni is covered (I used the entire 32 oz. carton, but it might vary depending on your pasta)
  11. For stove top pressure cooker, cover and turn heat to high until LOW pressure is reached, then adjust heat to maintain low pressure.
  12. For electric pressure cooker, turn off sauté mode, put top on cooker and set for LOW pressure.
  13. For the time, the general rule is half of what is specified on the pasta package for al dente pasta, but I prefer slightly softer than al dente, so I usually do it half the specified time plus 1 minute and it turns out just the way I like it. In this case, the macaroni package specified 8 minutes, so I set the timer for 5 minutes.
  14. When time is up, turn off heat and do a quick release.
  15. Remove top and stir everything together
  16. Add in about half of the cheese (about 1-1/2 cups), reserving the rest for topping
  17. Add in about ¼ cup of the sour cream
  18. Give it a stir and let it sit for a minute or so
  19. Stir it once more, then serve on plates, topping with the reserved cheese and sour cream

 

Sneak Peek – Taco Pasta

Taco Pasta – A Spicy Take On Beefy Mac

DSCF9565

Yes, I said Beefy Mac. I refuse to call macaroni with tomatoes and ground beef Goulash. Mostly because it is not goulash. Hungarian goulash is a totally different thing. Which reminds me, I still haven’t posted my Pressure Cooker Hungarian Goulash recipe. I will have to get to that one soon.

Which brings me back to this weekend’s recipe. Add spices and chiles to macaroni and ground beef, and you end up with Taco Pasta. I had the leftovers for two days after the first day that I made this, and didn’t even tire of it.

So stop by this weekend for the full recipe!

Pressure Cooker Hot Chicken Sandwich

Quebecois Hot Chicken Sandwich. Comfort Food At Its Finest!

Sandwich Top View

Ok, I’m not Canadian, but my heritage traces back to there. I also grew up so close to Canada that one time I accidentally got stuck in the line to cross the Ambassador Bridge to Canada because I was looking for parking to attend a concert in Downtown Detroit.

Once I reached the border guard, he let me make a U-Turn and go back to my search for parking. So, Canadian food is one of the cuisines I grew up with. And since a lot of it involves gravy, you can count me in!

There are quicker ways to make this recipe, such as buying a rotisserie chicken and jarred gravy, but I think this way is tastier, and it only takes about 40 minutes or so total.

Hot Chicken Sandwich Ingredients

It would not be a proper hot chicken sandwich if it wasn’t served with peas. You can use either frozen or canned, I have used both and I probably like canned better for this, but I used frozen this time. I usually just heat them in the microwave, but you can heat them on the stove if you prefer.

Plain white bread is traditional, but sometimes I switch it up with sourdough. Use whatever you like, but keep in mind that the bread should never be toasted! In fact I never understood this obsession with toasted bread. I don’t know if it is just here in SoCal, or it is everywhere, but it is difficult to order a sandwich in a diner without the bread being toasted. You usually have to specify “not toasted” to get  the bread in its natural state. Sure, some sandwiches, such as a BLT are normally served on toast, but something like a tuna sandwich or a corned beef sandwich? Come on!

Bread

To get started on the sandwich, melt a couple tablespoons of butter in the pressure cooker pot over medium heat.

Butter

Stir in 3 cups of beef broth, 1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce, 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, along with a teaspoon of Kitchen Bouquet (you can leave this out if you want, but I like the flavor and color it adds to the gravy.

Chicken Breasts Seasoned

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that this recipe utilizes the steam rack or trivet that came with your pressure cooker. All 3 of my pressure cooker came with such an item, so hopefully yours did as well.

Steam Rack

Season the skinless, boneless chicken breast halves with salt and pepper.

Once the sauce is stirred together, lower the steam rack into the pot and place the chicken on top of it. The chicken will be partially submerged, this is fine.

Chicken Breasts In Pot

Lock the top on the cooker, turn heat to high (or set your electric to reach high pressure and maintain for 10 minutes).

When high pressure is reached, adjust the heat to maintain high pressure (does not apply to electrics) and set timer for 10 minutes.

Slurry

While chicken/sauce is cooking, mix 3 tablespoons flour with about 6 tablespoons of water (just enough to make a thick liquid).

You can also heat up a can of peas at this time.

When time is up, do a quick release.

Remove the chicken to a plate.

Chicken Cooked

Carefully remove the steam rack.

Put the pressure cooker pot over medium high heat and bring to a simmer (electric use the sauté mode on high).

Stir in the flour/water mixture. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes to cook out the flour taste and to bring to the desired thickness, stirring frequently.

Shred the chicken meat with two forks. It doesn’t need to be finely shredded, just pull it apart.

Chicken On Bread

Arrange 1 piece of bread on a plate for each sandwich you are making.

Pile chicken on the bread (one breast half for each sandwich is good).

Bread On Plate

Put a little gravy on top of the chicken, then place another piece of bread on top. Add more gravy to the top of the sandwich, then top with peas.

Sandwich Assembled

Serve with French Fries.

Sandwich Finished 2

Enjoy, eh?

Pressure Cooker Hot Chicken Sandwich
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Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Comfort Food
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4 servings
Quebecois Comfort Food At Its Finest!
Ingredients
  • 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast (about 4 half breasts)
  • salt and pepper (for chicken)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Kitchen Bouquet (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons white flour
  • 8 slices bread (white is traditional, sourdough works great as well)
  • 1 can peas, or 1 bag of frozen peas
Instructions
  1. In pressure cooker pot over medium heat, melt the butter
  2. Stir in the beef broth, Worcestershire, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, the ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper and Kitchen Bouquet)
  3. Lower steam tray or trivet into the pot
  4. Place chicken on top of the steam tray (liquid will come over the top of tray and partially submerge chicken)
  5. Lock top on pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
  6. Set time for 10 minutes
  7. While that is cooking, make a slurry with 3 tablespoons of flour and enough water to make a thick liquid
  8. Heat peas in microwave or small pan
  9. When pressure cooker time is up, do a quick release
  10. Remove chicken to a board to cool and carefully remove the steam rack
  11. Put pressure cooker over medium heat and bring liquid to a simmer (on electric pressure cooker, use sauté mode on high setting)
  12. Stir in flour-water mixture
  13. Let simmer for 10 minutes or so, stirring frequently
  14. When desired thickness is reached, remove from heat
  15. Shred the chicken with two forks
  16. Place one slice of bread on each plate
  17. Top with chicken (approximately 1 breast half per sandwich
  18. Top each with another piece of bread, then cover sandwich with gravy
  19. Spoon peas on top of each sandwich
  20. Serve with French Fries

 

Sneak Peek – Quebec-Style Hot Chicken Sandwich

It’s Healthy, It Has Peas On It!

HOT CHICKEN SANDWICH

This weekend, I once again reach back into my heritage to make a tasty Quebec-Style Hot Chicken Sandwich (also known simply as a “Hot Chicken” or a “Chicken”. Not to be confused with Nashville Hot Chicken, Quebec-style Hot Chicken is a dish consisting of bread, chicken, gravy and peas. What’s not to love?

Come by this weekend to find out how to make it the pressure cooker way!

Pressure Cooker Atlanta Brisket

It’s Called Atlanta Brisket, But You Can Eat It Anywhere!

Brisket Plate Above

This is one of the simplest recipes ever. Sure, it may not be one of the healthiest things, but for me at least there is a certain nostalgic quality to the flavor.

Yes, it uses packaged onion soup mix, something that I for the most part try to avoid. But I think that is the main reason that it has such a comfort food feel to it. You see, I grew up in the midwest, and we rarely had a meal that didn’t involve some sort pre-made, processed soup item. Be it powdered onion soup or canned condensed cream of mushroom soup, the pantry was usually full of these items and my Mom wasn’t afraid to use them.

Heck, she even made a cake that had condensed tomato soup in it, and it was tasty!

So, although I didn’t grow up with this particular recipe, the flavors are familiar, taking me back to a simpler time. A time of war, riots and social upheaval, but it was a simpler upheaval. Ah, the good old days.

Ingredients

I’ll take “Things Michael Forgot To Include In The Ingredients Photo For 500, Alex”. The question is “What is Bay Leaf… What is Bay Leaf?”

Anyway, enough with the stroll down memory lane. This recipe derives its name from Atlanta’s own Coca Cola, which is traditionally used in the recipe. But here is where I become a bit hypocritical, I used a different cola because I didn’t want to use one with high fructose corn syrup. We have Mexican Coke in these parts which also does not have corn syrup, but they do not carry it at the market where I did my shopping this time, so I got the house brand. The same goes for ketchup. I always buy one that does not contain the deadly syrup. But yet, I recommend using the packaged onion soup mix. What can I say? I’m an enigma. If you really don’t want to use the mix, try a home made substitute like this.

Cola

The recipe for Atlanta Brisket is pretty standard, with minor variations from recipe to recipe. For some, apparently the onions from the soup mix are enough, but I like to add lots of sliced onions.

I realize the 90 minute cook time may sound like a long time for a pressure cooker, but making this in the oven takes about 4 hours, and in a crock pot even longer. So 90 minutes to a tender, falling apart brisket with a tangy, delicious sauce isn’t really that long. And the prep time is so quick on this that it kind of makes up for it.

When browning the meat, I like to rub it with yet another packaged product, Montreal Steak Seasoning.

So, let’s get started!

Brisket1

Heat a couple tablespoons of oil in the pressure cooker pot.

Rub a 3-3.5 pound brisket with Montreal Steak Seasoning or the rub of your choice. If there is a lot of fat on your brisket, you can trim some of it off. Depending on the size of your pressure cooker, you may have to cut it into a couple pieces. It is recipes like this that contain large hunks of meat where my Fissler really shines.

Brown on both sides, then remove to a plate.

Brisket Browned2

In the oil, sauté 3 thickly-sliced sweet onions (about 3/8″-1/2″ thick ought to do it). Sauté until the onions are translucent.

Pour in 1 12 oz. can of cola and stir around, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pot.

Onions Cooking1

Add the meat back into the pot.

Pour the ketchup on top of, and around, the brisket.

Sprinkle 1 packet of onion soup mix over the meat and in the sauce.

Add in 1 teaspoon liquid smoke, then toss in a couple of bay leaves.

Brisket Ketchup

Lock the top on the pressure cooker, put over high heat and set the timer for 90 minutes.

When time is up, let the pressure come down for ten minutes, then do a quick release.

Brisket Sliced1

Carefully remove the meat to a plate (please use caution, and support the bottom of the brisket as much as possible. The meat is so tender that you do not want a chunk of it falling into the hot pan sauce and splashing). Let the meat rest for 5-7 minutes.

While the meat is resting, skim some of the fat off the top of the sauce (I ended up with close to 2 cups).

When meat is finished resting, transfer to cutting board and slice against the grain into medium-thick slices.

Serve with sauce on top and sides of your choice!

Brisket Plate Close

Pressure Cooker Atlanta Brisket
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Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 5-6 servings
A super simple, yet very flavorful braised brisket. The pressure cooker cuts the usual time by more than half.
Ingredients
  • 2 Tablespoons cooking oil
  • Montreal steak seasoning
  • 3-3.5 pounds beef brisket (if there is a lot of fat, you can trim off some of it)
  • 3 sweet onions, sliced about ½ inch thick
  • 1 12 oz. can cola
  • 1-1/2 cups ketchup
  • 1 envelope packaged onion soup mix
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 2 bay leaves
Instructions
  1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in pressure cooker pot over medium high heat
  2. Rub the brisket with the Montreal steak seasoning
  3. Brown the brisket on both sides
  4. When brisket is browned, remove to a plate
  5. Put onions into the pot and sauté until they are translucent
  6. Pour cola over the onions and stir, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pot
  7. Place meat back in the pan
  8. Add ketchup, onion soup mix and liquid smoke over and around the brisket
  9. Toss in a couple bay leaves and lock lid on pressure cooker
  10. Set time for 90 minutes
  11. When time is up, remove from heat and let pressure come down on its own for ten minutes, then do a quick release
  12. Carefully remove meat to a cutting board and let rest for 5-7 minutes
  13. If sauce looks a little thin, you can simmer over medium heat while the meat rests to reduce a bit
  14. When resting time is up, slice medium thick slices against the grain
  15. Serve meat on plates with sauce spooned on top
  16. Sauce is also great on potatoes, if you are serving

 

Pressure Cooker Chicken Quesadilla

Just Don’t Call It A “Cheese” Quesadilla!

Quesadilla_Plate_Top

Looking around the interwebs at various recipes for Quesadillas, there seemed to be quitej a few recipes for “Cheese Quesadillas” (yes even Paula Deen doesn’t know any better), “Cheesy Quesadillas”. But seeing as how “Queso” is Spanish for cheese, that would be akin to posting a recipe for a “Tuna-y Tuna Sandwich”.

Chicken_Ingredients

But this recipe is for a quesadilla with the addition of chicken, so “Chicken Quesadilla” is appropriate.

Sure, there are quicker Chicken Quesadilla recipes, but this one has a tasty, braised chicken filling that would take longer if prepared in a conventional manner.

Tortillas_Cheese

I have made a smaller batch of this in my stovetop pressure cookers, but in my electric the minimum liquid is 1.5 cups, so a larger batch of chicken is necessary.

Cheese_Grated

This is a bit of a hybrid recipe, in that it utilizes the pressure cooker as well as the oven or griddle. I probably would do them on a griddle if I had one, but because of the size limits of my kitchen that probably will not happen soon.

Tortillas

This can also be done with smaller tortillas, using two tortillas with one on the top and one on the bottom, but my preference is to use large “burrito size” tortillas and fold them. This is also better if cooking them on the griddle, since your can just pivot them from one side to the other, whereas if you were doing it sandwich style, there would be a lot more difficulty in flipping it without losing all of the tasty filling.

I like to use a 9 or 10 inch tortilla. The ones I used this time were 12 inch and a little difficult to work with.

Chicken_Cubed

So let’s make the chicken filling. If you want to make the chicken dicing a little easier, you can pop the chicken breasts in the freezer for about 15 minutes or so to firm it up a bit.

In a couple tablespoons of your favorite cooking oil (it doesn’t have to be your favorite, your are welcome to cook in one you hate if you really want to), sauté a chopped onion until it becomes translucent. Add in 5 cloves of garlic (smashed with a press) and sauté for another minute.

Onions_Garlic

Add a couple pounds of cubed boneless, skinless chicken breast and cook until the outside starts to turn white.

Quesadilla_Spices

Add the oregano, cumin, salt and pepper and stir together.

Pour in 1/2 cup of beer and stir it all together.

Chicken_Beer

Add two cans of Ro-Tel, after draining the liquid from one of the cans.

Chicken_Rotel

Put the pressure cooker over high heat (if using an electric PC, switch to pressure mode). Put top on the pressure cooker and bring to high pressure.

When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure and set time for 3 minutes.

When time is up, do a quick release.

Remove the top from the pressure cooker.

Chicken_Cilantro

Put pot over high heat (for electrics switch to the highest sauté or brown mode.

Add about 1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro and simmer for 8-10 minutes until the mixture is reduced to desired thickness.

So, that’s it for the filling. Let’s put together our quesadillas.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Baking_Sheet_Tortillas

Lightly grease a baking sheet. Depending on the size of your tortillas, get out two or three of them (however many will fit on the baking sheet folded in half. If making a lot at once, use two baking sheets.

On one half of each tortilla, put one or two large spoons of the chicken mixture. Put a generous amount of cheese on each one as well.

Tortilla_Folded

Fold each quesadilla in half and put the baking sheets in the oven.

Set timer for 5 minutes.

Quesadilla_Plate_Side

When time is up, remove the baking sheets from the oven and let cool for a few minutes.

Cut into wedges with knife or pizza cutter and top with your favorite toppings.

Pressure Cooker Chicken Quesadilla
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Recipe type: Entree or Appetizer
Cuisine: Mexican American
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-8 quesadillas
The Southwest favorite with a tasty chicken filling
Ingredients
For Chicken
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into approximately ½" cubes
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, pressed
  • ½ cup beer
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cans Ro-Tel, 1 drained, 1 with liquid (or other canned tomatoes with green chiles)
  • ½ cup (loosely packed) chopped cilantro
For Quesadillas
  • Flour Tortillas (quantity will vary depending on size)
  • 24 oz cheese, grated (I like half Pepper Jack and half Cheddar)
  • Toppings of your choice (I like Salsa, Guacamole and Sour Cream)
Instructions
For Filling
  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat (or medium sauté setting on electric model)
  2. Sauté onions until they become translucent (4-5 minutes)
  3. Add garlic and sauté for another minute
  4. Add in chicken and stir until it takes on a little white color (I prefer the meat not be browned for this recipe)
  5. Add oregano, cumin, salt and pepper and stir to mix
  6. Pour in the beer
  7. Add the can of Ro-tel with juice and the drained can of Ro-tel
  8. Stir, then turn heat to high and place top on pressure cooker (for electric, turn off sauté mode, put top on cooker and set pressure to high)
  9. When high pressure is reached set time to 3 minutes
  10. When time is up, remove from heat and do a quick release
  11. Remove cover from pressure cooker
  12. Place back over medium-high heat
  13. Add chopped cilantro
  14. Bring to low boil for 8-10 minutes, stirring often until mixture thickens
For Quesadillas
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees (you can preheat while chicken is cooking)
  2. Lightly grease 1 or 2 baking sheets, depending on how many you want to make at a time
  3. Place two tortillas on sheet (can be hanging off the side since you will be folding) You might be able to get 3 on a sheet if using smaller tortillas
  4. Depending on tortilla size, put one or two large spoons of chicken on one side of each tortilla
  5. Top with generous handful of cheese
  6. Fold tortillas (like a large taco)
  7. Place baking sheet in oven for 5 minutes
  8. Cut quesadillas into wedges with knife or pizza cutter
  9. Serve with whatever topping you like

 

Sneak Peek – Pressure Cooker Chicken Quesadilla

Coming This Weekend, Pressure Cooker Chicken Quesadilla

PC_Quesadilla

Ok, not entirely in the pressure cooker, but the tasty filling is made in the pressure cooker. A couple minutes in the oven or on a griddle and there you go.

Here in SoCal, there aren’t many places that you can’t get a Chicken Quesadilla. So, I wouldn’t bother making one at home if I didn’t think I could do it better.

You be the judge when the recipe is posted this weekend!

Pressure Cooker Frijoles Charros

Pressure Cooker Mexican Cowboy Beans

Frijoles_Charros_Cornbread2

These Frijoles Charros make a mui bueno side dish to any Mexican or barbecue meal, but are just as good on their own with tortillas or corn bread. As a matter of fact, they would be the perfect accompaniment to your Memorial Day BBQ, which coincidentally is this very weekend!

Frijoles_Charros_Ingredients

Yes, I know there is no beer in this picture, but in my usual quest to keep you on your toes, I followed my usual policy of leaving out one item. But to make up for it, I included two onions, even though I decided that one large one was enough.

Chopped_Veggies

This isn’t exactly health food, what with the multiple types of pork and all, but consumed only on occasion it can be a spicy, tasty treat.

Start by soaking a pound of beans. I like to soak them overnight, but I have used the quick-soak method a couple times and works in a pinch, but I still think the very best texture is achieved by the good old overnight soaking method.

Bacon

Once the beans are soaked, you can get started on the frijoles.

In the pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat, add two tablespoons oil and sauté 1/2 pound of chopped thick cut bacon until it starts browning (or longer, if desired). I have found that the thick cut bacon doesn’t really get crispy like the thinner bacon, but has a nice chew to it that works great with this recipe.

Onions_Peppers_Beer_Rotel

Add a half-pound of Mexican chorizo and cook until it starts to crumble. It will finish cooking under pressure, you just don’t want a large block of cooked sausage when you are finished. I used bulk chorizo, but if yours is in a casing, remove it. Make sure it is Mexican chorizo, Spanish chorizo is a whole different animal, well not exactly, it is still pig, but just a different form of pig and is usually already cooked. Now, add half of the onion and continue to sauté until it just starts to soften.

Chorizo

Remove the meat and onion mixture to a bowl with a slotted spoon or one of these spider dealies:

Meat_Onions_Removing

If there is a large amount of grease left in the pan, you can drain all but 3 tablespoons or so, but don’t pour it all off, this is pure flavor. The red grease from the chorizo is especially flavorful.

Keeping the heat at medium high, in the fat left from the meat, add the rest of the onion and the Serrano chiles. Sauté until the onions start to soften, then add the garlic and sauté for another 1-2 minutes.

Veggies_Beer

Add the beer, scraping up any meat bits from the bottom of the pan, then add a can of tomatoes with chiles (like good old Ro-Tel).

Now it’s time for the cumin, oregano, salt, pepper and the liquid smoke.

Onions_Peppers_Beer_Rotel

Add the beans and 5 cups of water and one tablespoon beef better than bouillon, then put the top on your pressure cooker and bring to high pressure (instead of the water and Better Than Bouillon, you can use 1 quart beef stock and 1 cup water).

Frijoles_Charros_Finished

When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure and set timer for 20 minutes.

When time is up, do a quick release (remember when cooking legumes, your pressure cooker should never be filled more than half full).

Remove cover and add the meat/onion mixture. Stir and return top to pressure cooker, then bring to high pressure once again.

Frijoles_Charros_Cooking

This time, set the time for 10 minutes. When the time is up, let the pressure come down on its own.

Remove top from pressure cooker and stir the contents, then serve in bowls as a side dish or main course.

Frijoles_Charros_Ribs3

The first night, I made ribs for dinner, and this was a side dish. When I had the leftovers the next day, I served it as a main course and had corn bread with it. And to be honest, I think I liked it better as a main dish. It would also be great with tortillas.

Enjoy!

Pressure Cooker Frijoles Charros
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Recipe type: Entree or Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6-8 servings
These spicy Mexican Cowboy Beans are good as a side dish or an entree
Ingredients
  • 1 pound dried pinto beans (soaked overnight)
  • ½ pound thick cut bacon, chopped
  • ½ pound Mexican chorizo (remove from casings if applicable)
  • 1 large onion, chopped and divided
  • 4 Serrano chiles, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 cup beer
  • 1 can tomatoes with green chiles (such as Ro-Tel)
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon beef flavored Better Than Bouillon (you can substitute 4 cups beef stock and 1 cup water for the water/Better Than Bouillon).
Instructions
  1. In the pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat, add two tablespoons oil
  2. Sauté the bacon until it starts browning (or longer, if desired)
  3. Add the chorizo and cook until it starts to crumble
  4. Add half of the onion and continue to sauté until it just starts to soften
  5. Remove the meat and onion mixture to a bowl with slotted spoon or spider
  6. If you have a large amount of grease, you can drain all but 3 tablespoons or so
  7. In the fat left from the meat, add the rest of the onion and the Serrano chiles
  8. Sauté until the onions start to soften
  9. Add the garlic and sauté for another 1-2 minutes
  10. Add the beer, scraping up any meat bits from the bottom of the pan
  11. Add the tomatoes with chiles
  12. Add the cumin, oregano, salt and pepper
  13. Add the liquid smoke
  14. Add the beans
  15. Pour in the 5 cups of water and 1 tablespoon Beef Flavored Better Than Bouillon
  16. Put top on pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
  17. When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure
  18. Set timer for 20 minutes
  19. When time is up, do a quick release to bring pressure down quickly
  20. Remove cover and add the meat/onion mixture
  21. Stir and return top to pressure cooker
  22. Bring to high pressure again
  23. Set time for 10 minutes
  24. When time is up, let pressure come down on its own
  25. Remove top from pressure cooker and stir
  26. Serve in bowls as side dish or main course

Orange Chipotle Turkey Meatballs

Sweet, Smoky, Spicy Turkey Meatballs 

Turkey_Meatballs_Plate4

I’m not sure how I arrived at this recipe. I started out looking at various recipes for “Russian” Chicken, which is not Russian at all, but it got its name because it usually uses bottled Russian Dressing with Apricot Preserves and onion soup mix. Since I would rather not use bottled dressing and onion soup mix, I was contemplating some alternatives.

Next, I was having a conversation with my wife about Orange Chicken and somehow the Apricot preserves became Orange Marmalade. As for the Chipotles, I guess that is because I live on the west coast. Much like the tech industry, whenever they contemplate how to improve their products, the answer is always “Add Bluetooth!”, so it goes in SoCal that whenever you want to improve a recipe, the answer is inevitably “Add Chipotles!”

Meatball_Ingredients

You can use any tomatoes for this, but I say you are doing yourself a disservice if you do not use fire-roasted. It adds another layer to the flavor, and a rather tasty layer at that.

Please promise me that you won’t use 100% ground breast meat for this. I haven’t tried it, but only because I am fairly certain it would not turn out well. What they just call “ground turkey” is fine. It is usually a mixture of white and dark meat.

Meatball_Onion_Garlic

I am not sure why I decided to use ground turkey for this recipe, I was a little afraid it would turn out kind of dry, but currently these turkey meatballs are my favorite meatballs I have ever made of any kind.

Or course, that can be partly attributed to the sauce. It has the sweetness of Chinese Orange Chicken, balanced out by the spiciness of the chipotle chilis and the smokiness of the tomatoes (I added a bit of liquid smoke also, but you can leave it out if you are using the fire roasted tomatoes).

Turkey_Meatball_Mixed

So, let’s make those meatballs:

Mix together 2 pounds of ground turkey (not all white meat), Italian seasoned bread crumbs (unseasoned are probably fine, but I like Italian for this dish), 2 eggs, 1/4 cup heavy cream, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper and 1 teaspoon dried parsley.

Form into balls about 2 inches in diameter. I ended up with 19 meatballs.

Turkey_Meatballs_PC

Heat 3 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat. Brown the meatballs in batches and remove to plate.

Ok, sauce time:

In blender or food processor, add a can of fire roasted tomatoes, 1 cup of orange marmalade (I used a 13 oz. jar and it came out to exactly a cup. I prefer to use one without corn syrup.), 2-3 canned chipotles (use more or less, depending on how hot you like it), 1 tablespoon of the sauce from the chipotles, 1/2 cup chicken broth, 2 teaspoons cumin, 2 teaspoons oregano, 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 1 teaspoon liquid smoke, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Pulse until smooth.

Chipotle_Sauce Blended

In the oil from the meatballs, sauté the onion until it turns translucent.

Add the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute.

Meatball_Onions_Browning

Return the meatballs to the pan on top of the onions. Pour the sauce over the meatballs. Toss a couple of bay leaves in and lock the cover on the pressure cooker and bring to high pressure.

When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain pressure and set the time for 7 minutes.

Turkey_Meatballs_Saufe

When time is up let the pressure come down naturally.

Serve with couscous (which is how I made it), rice or mashed potatoes.

Turkey_Meatballs_Finished2

Spicy Apricot Chicken
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Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-5 servings
Ingredients
For The Meatballs
  • 2 pounds ground turkey (not all breast meat)
  • 1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 3 tablespoons oil
For The Sauce
  • 1 can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 cup orange marmalade
  • 2-3 canned chipotle chiles (I used 3, you can use 2 if you like it milder)
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle sauce (from the can)
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 2 bay leaves
Instructions
For The Meatballs
  1. In a bowl, mix all the Meatball ingredients except the oil
  2. Mix gently with hands, do not over-mix
  3. Form into balls approximately 2-inches diameter (I got 19 meatballs)
  4. In 3 tablespoons oil, brown meatballs working in batches
  5. Remove meatballs to plate
For The Sauce
  1. In blender or food processor mix first 12 ingredients (the tomatoes through the black pepper)
  2. Pulse until smooth
  3. Over medium-high heat, in the oil from the meatballs, sauté the onions until they are translucent
  4. Add the garlic and sauté for 1-2 minutes
  5. Place meatballs in pressure cooker on top of onions
  6. Pour sauce over meatballs
  7. Toss two bay leaves on top
  8. Put top on pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
  9. When high pressure is reached, lower heat to maintain high pressure
  10. Set time for 7 minutes
  11. When time is up, remove from heat and let pressure come down on its own
  12. Serve with rice, couscous or mashed potatoes