Pressure Cooker Smoky Swiss Steak

A Smoky Twist On The Classic

Swiss Steak Reduced

I don’t know if there is actually anything Swiss about this dish. According to Wikipedia there actually is a way of preparing steak in Switzerland that is similar to this, but I don’t know if I’m buying it.

My guess is that tenderizing the meat by poking holes in it recalls Swiss Cheese, but that is just my guess.

Swiss Steak Ingredients

This is something I grew up with. I don’t think I have seen it once since I have been on the West Coast, but in Michigan we probably had it once a week or so the entire time I was growing up.

Speaking of the West Coast, temperatures are still in the nineties, so once again I got up early to do my cooking. I have posted salad recipes for the past few weeks, but from what I hear, it is actually seeming like Autumn in parts of the country (and the rest of the world), so I thought I would prepare something a bit more Autumn-y for those of you not sweating in a hot apartment.

Meat Whole

I used top round, but bottom round or chuck will work fine. Sirloin would work, but that’s getting into spendy territory, which you are probably trying to avoid if you are making this type of dish.

Start by taking 1-1/2 to 2 pounds of meat and cut into serving-size pieces, which would probably be 4 pieces for 1-1/2 pounds and about 6 pieces for 2 pounds. I did this by cutting my steak in half, so I have two pieces. Now, cut each of these pieces horizontally through the center so that it is half as thick as before. The goal is to end up with four equal-sized pieces, which I failed miserably at.

Meat Divided

Now, go to town on them with one of these poundy poky things:

Mallet

You don’t need to get it super-thin, you just want to get all the meat to a fairly uniform thickness.

Meat Tenderized

Slice a couple small onions. I used “The Widowmaker” (my nickname for my mandoline). This will make short work of those onions (and anything else that you might get a little too close to it).

Slice a large green pepper into thin strips and press a couple cloves of garlic.

Onion_Mandoline

The “smoky” part of this Swiss Steak comes from using fire-roasted tomatoes and smoked paprika.

In a couple tablespoons of coconut oil (or any cooking oil), brown the steak lightly on both sides. It is pretty thin at this point, so you don’t want to overdo it. Do a couple at a time so you don’t overcrowd the pan. Remove to a plate.

Meat Browning

Add the onions and peppers to the pan (adding a bit more oil if necessary) and sauté until they start to soften a bit. Toss in the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute or so.

Onions_Peppers_CookingAdd just a splash of red wine to deglaze the pan. Now, pour in a can of fire-roasted tomatoes, a tablespoon of tomato paste, some Worcestershire sauce, the smoked paprika, a little dried thyme and some salt and pepper.

Veggies_PanAdd the meat to the pan and toss in a couple bay leaves.

Swiss Steak Cooked

Lock the cover on the pan and turn heat to high.

Bring it to high pressure, then adjust heat to maintain high pressure.

Set the time for 20 minutes.

When the time is up, remove from heat and let pressure come down on its own for 10 minutes, then do a quick release.

Swiss Steak Reduced2

If you would like the sauce a bit thicker, put over medium-high heat for 5-7 minutes until it cooks down to desired thickness.

Serve with potatoes, rice or egg noodles.

 

 

Pressure Cooker Smoky Swiss Steak
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Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4 servings
Fire roasted tomatoes and smoked paprika give a slightly smoky twist to this classic
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, or other cooking oil
  • 1-1/2 to 2 pounds round or chuck steak, cut into individual portions
  • 2 small or one large sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large green bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 splash red wine
  • 1 can fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste), more for seasoning meat
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper (or to taste), more for seasoning meat
  • 2 bay leaves
Instructions
  1. Tenderize steaks with spiky side of mallet and season with a little salt and pepper
  2. Heat oil in pressure cooker pot over medium-high heat
  3. Brown meat lightly on both sides and set aside on plate
  4. Sauté onions and peppers until slightly soft (add a little more oil if necessary)
  5. Add the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute
  6. Add a splash of red wine to deglaze the pan, scraping any brown bits off the bottom of the pan
  7. Add the fire-roasted tomatoes and tomato paste
  8. Add the Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, paprika, thyme and salt and pepper
  9. Stir, then add meat back to pan
  10. Toss a couple bay leaves on top
  11. Lock the lid on the pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
  12. When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure and set time for 20 minutes
  13. When time is up, remove from heat and let pressure come down on its own for ten minutes, then do a quick release
  14. Serve meat and sauce with rice, egg noodles or potatoes.

And The Pressure Cooker Problem Continues…

Ok, I was able to control my pressure cooker habit this time…barely

Fissler Pressure Cooker

I came this close to being the proud papa of twins (pressure cookers, that is!).

I know, I have mentioned before that I have a bit of a problem when it comes to  pressure cookers. A fondness bordering on obsession.

The latest episode in my ongoing battle against my pressure cooker addiction occurred just this past weekend.

It began innocently enough. I was at the market just to purchase something for dinner. Granted, it was an upscale “gourmet” market, but a market nonetheless. Why would I go to such a swanky shop to purchase a simple dinner, you might ask? Well, I have a broken foot that is still on the mend, I don’t own a car and it is the closest store. I don’t think they have them outside of California, but Bristol Farms can get a bit spendy. But like I said, it is the closest store. Why didn’t I go to the second closest store? Well, it’s a Whole Foods. So it was basically one of those six of one, half a dozen of the other type deals.

So back to my near moment of weakness. In addition to having a plethora of gourmet food items and an aisle and a half of craft beers, in the “housewares” aisle, where a normal grocery store might have cheap cutlery and ten-dollar nonstick fry pans, in this place you are just as likely to find Fissler and Vitamix products.

And it was a Fissler product that almost brought me down.

As I was approaching the store, I saw several tables out front with signage that read “Sidewalk Sale”. Besides the fact that it was bugging me that they were calling it a sidewalk sale, when in fact it was in the parking lot, I approached it anyway just to have a look. There were also signs that said that everything there was 50% off the marked price.

As I got closer, my eye was drawn to a Fissler pressure pan set, the exact same pan set I already have, but it was so shiny. Well, the picture on the box was shiny, as the pan was brand new, still in box, never opened. OMG, as the kids say these days.

The price marked on the box was $280, which was about what I paid for it, and which meant that the pressure pan could be procured for $140!

How could I pass up such a deal? Do I really need a duplicate pressure cooker? Could I buy it and sell it on eBay (though I knew I would figure out some reason why it would be better to keep it)? These thoughts and many others were whirling in my head. I looked down and to my right, and noticed that my hand, which I apparently had no control over at this point, was being drawn as if by a powerful magnet to my right front pocket. Yes, my “wallet” pocket!

I was not thinking clearly. I was finally able to regain enough presence of mind to grasp my right arm with my left hand, pull it away from the pocket area, lift it up above my shoulder and slap myself in the face with it!

“SNAP OUT OF IT MAN! YOU DO NOT NEED TWO IDENTICAL PRESSURE COOKERS!”

Still shaking slightly, I managed to make my way inside the store to purchase my dinner. But on the way out, I exited through the other door, and took the long way around the building to avoid passing by the “sidewalk” sale.

I can’t say that hours passed without thinking “I wonder if it’s still there?”, but I didn’t go back to check the entire weekend.

One day at a time, one day at a time.

 

Black Bean Salad With Chipotle-Lime Dressing

Black Bean and Corn Salad With A Spicy Chipotle Dressing

Salad Plate2

After a few slightly cooler days, and even some (gasp!) rain, we seem to be back in salad mode, at least for a couple more days. So once again I am limited to cooking in the wee hours. And once again I am a bit behind on my post. Between the heat and my broken foot, I am still trying to get back to the proper schedule. I start physical therapy next week, so I am at least on the road to normality, but for now I am still clomping around the kitchen like Frankenstein (yes, I know technically like Frankenstein’s monster, Frankenstein being the doctor, but everyone always calls the monster Frankenstein, so I will too).

This week I have another salad post. This time it is a Black Bean Corn Salad with a Chipotle-Lime Vinaigrette.

Black Bean Salad Ingredients

The Mexican/Southwest flavors give this dish a kick, and the cooling tomatoes and avocado make it perfect for warmer days. It can be served as a side with a meat dish, or just add some tortilla chips and make it a meal in itself.

I like to get the beans and corn ready in the morning and assemble the salad when it’s time to eat.

Corn On Foil

I have always found the beans turn out much more uniform when soaked overnight. I know some prefer not to soak, but that will mess up the timing for this recipe, so soaking it is.

Black Beans In Pot

The two items that need to be cooked in the pressure cooker (beans and corn) can be done together, saving some time.

Put the black beans in the pressure cooker pot with 3 cups of water and add 2 teaspoons of salt and 2 bay leaves. Add a splash of oil to help reduce foaming.

Corn Foil Trivet

The corn should be wrapped in foil and somehow suspended above the beans, out of the water. I used a trivet from one of my cookers and laid the corn packet across it. You could also use a daisy style steam tray, or kludge something together using a heavy aluminum pie plate or anything you can come up with, as long as it is food-safe. Unfortunately this is one occasion where duct tape should probably not be your first choice.

Black Beans Corn Colander

I did this in my Instant Pot, 12 minutes at high pressure. When time is up let pressure come down on its own for 10 minutes, then do a quick release. Immediately transfer both corn and beans to a colander and rinse with cold water until they are cool. Depending on the freshness of your beans, time can vary a little. Taste your beans first and put under pressure for another minute or two if needed before rinsing.

You can put this in the refrigerator if you are doing this ahead. Otherwise, set beans and corn aside for now.

Chopped Veggies

 

To assemble the salad, add beans and corn to a large bowl. Add in a jar of fire-roasted red pepper, chopped. Of course you can make your own roasted red peppers if you like. One large one should do. Add 1/2 of a chopped red onion and 8-10 ounces of Roma style tomatoes. I used a bag of mini Marzano tomatoes that I have been seeing at the store lately. Cut them in a rough dice.

Salad Not Tossed

In a blender or food processor, mix together all of the dressing ingredients and pulse a few times until smooth.

Pour the dressing into the salad and give it a toss. Finally, add the avocado and gently mix. I add the avocado last to keep it reasonably intact.

Add some salt and pepper to taste.

Salad Assembled

You can serve as a side, but I like to eat it as a main course with some tortilla chips.

Black Bean Salad With Chipotle-Lime Dressing
Print
Recipe type: Entree Salad
Cuisine: Southwest
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4 servings
Zesty Latin and Southwest Flavors and cooling avocado combine to make a zesty warm weather meal
Ingredients
For The Dressing
  • ½ Cup Olive Oil
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 3 Tablespoons Rice Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Honey
  • 1-2 Canned Chipotle Chiles, chopped
  • 2 Teaspoons of the Chipotle Sauce
  • 1 Teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt
For the Salad
  • 2 cups dried black beans, soaked overnight
  • 1-1/2 cups frozen corn
  • ½ 12 oz. jar roasted red peppers, chopped
  • ½ red onion, chopped
  • 8-10 ounces fresh Roma Tomatoes, diced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
For The Dressing
  1. Combine all dressing ingredients in a blender or food processor and pulse until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use
For The Salad
  1. Put soaked beans in pressure cooker with 3 cups of water
  2. Add 2 teaspoons salt and a couple bay leaves
  3. Add a splash of oil to reduce foaming
  4. Wrap frozen corn tightly in foil and put on a rack above the beans. I used a trivet stand, but it you don't have one that will work, you could use a standard daisy type steam tray or fashion something out of a sturdy foil pie pan
  5. Lock top on the pressure cooker and set for 12 minutes at high pressure
  6. When time is up, let pressure come down on its own
  7. Remove beans (test for doneness first) and corn to a colander and rinse immediately with cold water
  8. You can make this early and refrigerate until you are ready to assemble the salad
  9. Add beans and corn to a large bowl
  10. Add the onions, peppers, and tomatoes
  11. Pour the dressing over vegetables and toss until well mixed
  12. Add avocado last and toss lightly to keep avocado intact.
  13. Add salt and pepper to taste

 

Thai Rice Noodle Salad

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Green Papaya Salad

Salad Chicken

I had no idea how difficult it would be to find a green papaya to use for this salad that I was all set to make for dinner. But difficult it was. So difficult that I finally gave up and switched gears, ending up with a rice noodle salad instead. Except for the papaya, I used all the ingredients that I had planned on using, but with rice noodles instead.

Rice Noodle Salad Ingredients

 

I know that this hardly counts as a “pressure cooker” recipe, since cooking the green beans one minute under pressure does not a pressure cooker recipe make, but I consider this the second half of my Thai Chicken recipe from the weekend, so I was able to justify it somewhat.

This shares many of the same flavors as the chicken, so it should go well with it.

First, cook the noodles according to the package directions. I made the entire package, since there is no way to divide up the package before cooking without making a mess, because it comes in kind of a brick shape, but you will only need about half or a bit more.

Beans In Steamer

Now, for the part that makes this a pressure cooker recipe, trim and cut the green beans.

Put 1-1/2 cups water and the steam tray in your pressure cooker. Add the green beans and lock the top on the pressure cooker. Set the time for 1 minute. When the time is up, do a quick release.

Immediately transfer the beans to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. And so ends the pressure cooker portion of our recipe.

Beans Cooing

Now, combine some fish sauce, lime, Sriracha, honey and garlic. Pulse that a few times in a blender or food processor.

In a large bowl, mix the noodles, about 20 cherry or grape tomatoes (halved), 1/2 cup peanuts, some chopped cilantro and the drained beans.

Veggies Bowl

Toss everything together, then pour in the dressing and continue to toss until it is pretty well mixed together.

Veggies Noodles

Serve with my Thai Chicken recipe.

 

Thai Rice Noodle Salad
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Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Thai
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4 servings
A cold noodle salad with Thai flavors. Very refreshing on a hot evening.
Ingredients
  • 5-6 ounces Asian rice noodles (dry weight), cooked according to package directions and cooled
  • 4 ounces green beans, trimmed and halved
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha sauce
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 20 cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
  • ½ cup peanuts, slightly crushed (I put some them in a mortar and pestle and crushed them lightly, and put some in whole as well)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro
  • A few grinds of black pepper
Instructions
  1. Place steam rack and 1-1/2 cups water in pressure cooker
  2. Add beans to steam rack and turn heat to high
  3. Lock lid on pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
  4. Set time for 1 minute
  5. When time is up, do a quick release
  6. Immediately transfer beans to a bowl of cold water to stop cooking
  7. In blender container, add fish sauce, honey, garlic, lime and a little black pepper
  8. Pulse a few times until well mixed
  9. Drain beans and put in a bowl
  10. Add tomatoes, cilantro and peanuts to the beans
  11. Add the noodles and mix everything together
  12. Pour the dressing over the salad and mix until everything is blended
  13. Serve with Thai chicken

 

Pressure Cooker Thai Chicken

A Hot Weather Take On The Thai Chicken Classic Ping Gai

Ping Gai Bowl

Once again I am running behind a bit on getting my post up. The reason for this is that there is only a small window of time in which I can do any cooking. I need to get my cooking done in the early morning hours before the apartment becomes too hot to even stay inside, let alone do any cooking. Which is why my most recent recipes are things that can be made quickly and can usually be served cold.

Ping Gai Ingredients

I made this especially to be served with a green papaya rice noodle salad, which I will post the recipe for this coming Wednesday. The reason I didn’t post it along with the chicken is that I haven’t made it yet. And though the salad includes just the tiniest bit of pressure cooker use, I think that it is close enough to include it on this blog.

This chicken is in no way authentic, I was just looking for inspiration and came across the grilled chicken dish known ad Ping Gai, also called Kai Yang. I have incorporated some of the flavors of this dish, but it is not grilled, and I serve it chilled. If you are one of those people who do not like cilantro, this is not for you, as the cilantro is definitely the predominant flavor here.

Cilantro

I normally stay away from boneless skinless chicken breasts because they tend to be dry and flavorless, but using the pressure cooker it is possible to infuse both moisture and flavor into this usually bland cut of meat. I usually prefer chicken thighs, but for some reason breast just seems to work best in salads.

So basically, you just throw everything except the chicken and coconut oil into the blender of food processor and pulse it 2-3 times. You don’t want it to be completely liquified, you want the cilantro to be finely chopped.

Chicken Sauce

Put a few tablespoons of coconut oil into the pressure cooker pan over medium-high heat. Lightly brown the chicken on both sides. Work in batches if they don’t all fit at once. If they do all fit, there is no need to remove them from the pan. If done in batches, return them to the pot and pour the cilantro mixture over the chicken.

Turn heat to high and bring to high pressure. Once high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain pressure and set time for 12 minutes.

Ping Gai Chicken Finished

When time is up, do a quick release. Let chicken cool some, then transfer to a container and refrigerate until dinner time.

Check back on Wednesday for the accompanying salad!

Pressure Cooker Thai Chicken
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Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Thai
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ⅔ bunch cilantro (save the rest for the salad)
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • juice of 2 limes
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon Liquid Smoke
  • A few grinds of black pepper
Instructions
  1. Add everything but the chicken and coconut oil to a blender or food processor.
  2. Pulse 2-3 times until cilantro is finely chopped, but not liquid
  3. Put pressure cooker over medium high heat
  4. In 3 tablespoons coconut oil, lightly brown chicken breasts on both sides, working in batches if necessary
  5. If all the chicken fits at one time, no need to remove it. Otherwise once chicken is browned, add it back to the pot
  6. Pour cilantro mixture over the chicken and turn heat to high
  7. Lock cover on the pressure cooker and bring to high pressure
  8. When high pressure is reached, adjust heat to maintain high pressure
  9. Set time for 12 minutes
  10. When time is up, remove from heat and do a quick release
  11. Serve with green papaya salad (Recipe to come)

 

 

3 YEAR ANNIVERSARY!

Pressure Cooker Convert is 3!

DSCF8330

Yeah, I know, I am using the same picture from my first anniversary, but my Kuhn Rikon looks so adorable in its birthday suit, I just had to use it again.

It’s not the exact day, but an invoice from my Web Host reminded me that it has been 3 years already since I started this blog.

I like to think that slowly but surely I have been improving my blog, and hope to continue doing so.

Over the next year I plan to switch over to a nicer looking layout and add some videos, as well as some other things.

I think I will probably keep this post on the shorter side, since it is currently 90 degrees… INSIDE!

So, before the heat causes me to slip into incomprehensibility, jdowotta jldldjpa0, iyioovovovodje allldlelllrlll w;w;w;w;w;, sdopfsadrgigi!

Pressure Cooker Matambre

The Argentinian Favorite Matambre Done Pressure Cooker Quick

Matambre2

Don’t cry for me, Argentina, I think my version of your national dish turned out pretty well!

So, what’s the difference between Bracciole, Rouladen, Matambre and various other rolled meat dishes? A lot of it has to do with the filling and the sauce. I have made Rouladen plenty of times before, and there are some similarities, except that the Rouladen is made as smaller, individual rolls, whereas the Matambre is one large roll that is then sliced into individual pieces.

Matambre Ingredients

The tricky part of this recipe is butterflying the flank steak. If you have a butcher who will do this for you, take advantage of it. Don’t be a hero! If you do it yourself, you will end up with a few tears (you can read this as either word that shares this spelling, they both will be true). Fortunately the meat I bought had another smaller piece with it, so that I was able to make a couple patches to fix the holes that I wound up with. If you don’t happen to have a meat patch kit, just push together as best you can.

Flank Steak Seasoned

For the butterflying, lay the meat on a cutting board with the grain running vertically as you are looking at it. With a sharp knife (I used a boning knife), carefully slice through the center, stopping about an inch away from the edge, so that you can open it like a book.

Open it up and cover with plastic wrap.

Using a flat mallet, pound until it is all a uniform thickness (it does not have to be super thin, just try to get it even).

Now, turn the meat 90 degrees so that the grain is running horizontally.

Flank Steak w:garlic

Sprinkle the meat with salt, pepper and oregano.

Sprinkle on the chopped garlic.

Arrange thin slices of onion on steak, leaving about an inch on all sides.

Lay the spinach leaves over the onions. I bought the pre-washed, bagged spinach to make things easy.

Arrange the carrots in rows going across the meat horizontally. I kept the carrots whole since they were small, but next time I will cut them in half because the thicker parts were a little crunchier than I prefer. Also, I didn’t peel them, because they were small and I didn’t want to peel away most of the carrot. If your carrots are larger, you can peel them and cut into quarters.

Matamabre Pre-Roll

Next, place the whole boiled eggs near the center in a single row.

Sprinkle olives around, over the top of the other fillings.

Get about 6 pieces of cooking twine ready, long enough to fit around the rolled steak.

Starting at the bottom, roll the meat toward the top, jelly roll style, keeping it tight.

When you are finished rolling it, place the seam on the bottom.

Using the cooking twine, tie it near each end, then tie 3-4 times in between.

Matambre Pre-Cook

Add 1-1/2 cups water to the pressure cooker pot and turn heat to high. This recipe works best in a wider pressure cooker, but roll can be cut into 2 pieces to fit into a narrower cooker. I cooked this in my Fissler, and I was barely able to fit it in one piece with a little bending.

Stir in 1 teaspoon of beef base (I use better than bouillon) and a little salt and pepper. The beef base has quite a bit of salt, so you won’t need much. You can substitute 1-1/2 cups of beef stock for the water and beef base. Add a splash of red wine.

Add the matambre into the pressure cooker pot, seam side down.

Matambre Rolled2

Add two bay leaves then lock the cover on the pressure cooker and bring to high pressure.

When high pressure is reached, reduce heat to maintain high pressure and set time for 16 minutes.

When time is up, remove pressure cooker from heat and let pressure come down on its own for 10 minutes, then do a quick release.

Let the matambre rest for at least 10 minutes. It can also be cooled and served at room temperature.

Slice into 1-inch slices. Can be served with or without some of the pan sauce. I served it cool, so didn’t use any of the pan sauce.

Traditionally, matambre is served with chimichurri sauce, but I was too lazy to make some. If you would like to make some, here is a recipe from a reliable source. There are a lot of other recipes online if you would like to try a different one.

Matambre3

I just served the sliced room temperature matambre with some roasted red potatoes and it was just right for the relatively warm (but not super hot) temperatures we have been having this week.

Pressure Cooker Matambre
Print
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Argentinian
Author:
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4 servings
Stuffed Flank Steak Argentinian Syle
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds flank steak
  • ½ onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 ounces or so fresh spinach
  • 4-6 small carrots, halved (if larger, cut into quarters)
  • ½ cup green olives with pimentos
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 boiled eggs, peeled
  • salt
  • pepper
  • oregano
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon beef base (can substitute 1-1/2 cups beef broth for the water and beef base)
Instructions
  1. Butterfly and pound the flank steak (see method above)
  2. Arrange on a cutting board with the grain running horizontally
  3. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and oregano
  4. Sprinkle on the chopped garlic
  5. Arrange slices of onion on steak
  6. Lay spinach leaves over onions
  7. Arrange carrots in rows going across horizontally
  8. Place eggs near the center in a row
  9. Sprinkle olives around over the top
  10. Starting at the bottom, roll meat toward the top, jelly roll style, keeping tight
  11. Place seam on the bottom
  12. Using butcher twine, tie near each end, with 3-4 pieces in the middle
  13. Add 1-1/2 cups water to pressure cooker pot and turn heat to high
  14. Stir in the beef base and a little salt and pepper
  15. Add a splash of red wine
  16. Add the tied meat into the pressure cooker pot (if you pot is narrower, you may have to cut the roll in half)
  17. Add two bay leaves then lock the cover on the pot and bring to high pressure
  18. When high pressure is reached, reduce heat to maintain high pressure
  19. Set time for 16 minutes
  20. When time is up remove from heat and let pressure come down on its own for 10 minutes, then do a quick release
  21. Let rest for at least 10 minutes, or it can be cooled and served at room temperature or cooled slightly.
  22. Slice into 1-inch slices. Can be served with or without some of the pan sauce. Can also be served with Chimichurri Sauce

 

There Goes Summer – Labor Day Ideas

Try These Pressure Cooker Recipes This Weekend!

It’s hard to believe that it is almost the end of summer. With the weather we have been having lately, it’s even harder to believe. It seems to finally getting back down to reasonable temperatures just in time to cook up some tasty treats for the last big blast of the summer!

Here are a few recipes using the pressure cooker so that your Labor Day can be less laborious.

Pressure Cooker Macaroni Salad

Mac Salad PLate2

Try this creamy Hawaiian-Style Macaroni to go with your grilled specialties.

Pressure Cooker Cherry Sriracha Baby Back Ribs

Ribs Stacked3No grill? No worries! Cook up some of these zesty ribs for your get-together!

Pressure Cooker Shrimp Boil

Shrimp Boil CookedRing out the summer with this Southern style shrimp boil. It’s quick, tasty and healthy (well, it has some vegetables in it).

However you celebrate the holiday, have fun!

Pressure Cooker Tomato Beet Salad

Beet The Heat With This Tasty Salad!

Beet Salad Plate

Since I didn’t want to go yet another week without posting a recipe, I had to come up with something I could make utilizing the pressure cooker in this crazy heat wave we have been having, so I came up with this tomato beet salad with pickled onions, goat cheese and candied pecans.

My wife is not a huge fan of beets (in other words, she doesn’t like them), but if I dress them up with enough accoutrements, such as pickled onions, tomatoes and goat cheese, she can tolerate them.

Thermostat

By doing the cooking part at 8 AM, when it was a mere 80 degrees in our apartment, by the time dinner time came around the cooked components were cooled and it was just a matter of assembling the salad.

I did all the cooking in the instant pot. Even though the onions aren’t cooked under pressure, I used the Instant Pot so I only had to dirty one pot. So I’m happy, the wife’s happy, it’s a win-win!

I used seven smallish beets which came out to about 1-1/4 pounds. Trim the leaves off, leaving about 1/2 inch of the stem attached. Doing this will keep the beets from bleeding while cooking and will help to keep your kitchen from ending up looking like a venue which recently played host to the Red Wedding.

Beets

Pour 1-1/2 cups water into the pot and insert the steam tray. I could have used the tray that came with the instant pot, but opted to use the “daisy” style tray that most of us have.

Place the beets in the tray, lock the cover on the pot and set the time for 20 minutes. As I said, these beets were on the smaller side, if your beets are larger, you may have to add 4-5 minutes.

While the beets are cooking, you can get the red onion ready to go. I used the second-thinnest setting and sliced them on my mandoline, which I refer to as “The Widowmaker”, after a treacherous trip to the ER in which my thumb was spewing a stream of blood reminiscent of a Monty Python sketch. Which leads me to caution you to always use the safety guard, kids, or at the very least, a kevlar glove!

When the time is up for the beets, let the pressure come down on its own.

Carefully remove the beets to a plastic cutting board and let them cool for a few minutes while you work on the pickled onions.

Rinse out the inner pot of the cooker, and replace.

Pour 1 cup cider vinegar, or a mixture of vinegars. I used mostly cider vinegar, but added a little sherry vinegar because I didn’t have a full cup of cider vinegar left. Also add 1 cup of water, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of pickling spice. Next,  add 2 tablespoons of sugar. Set the pressure cooker to sauté mode on the high setting and bring to a boil, stirring often until the sugar and salt are dissolved.

Onion Liquid

Turn off cooker and let cool for about 2 minutes.

Strain the liquid through a strainer into a bowl to remove the pickling spices, Add the sliced onions to the bowl and let them sit until cooled, about ten minutes or so.

Onions Liquid

Transfer the onions and liquid to a jar or other container and refrigerate. I did this in the morning, so they had all day to steep. If you plan on doing this later in the day, refrigerate them for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Now that the beets are cooled, you can easily rub the skins off with a paper towel. Put in a container and refrigerate until ready to use. I like to wait until assembling the salad to cut them into pieces.

Now, let’s assemble this thing.

Cherry Tomatoes

Take a pint of halved heirloom cherry tomatoes, all one color or mixed, (regular cherry tomatoes will do as well) and place in a bowl.

Cut the beets into quarters (if larger, cut int 6-8 pieces). Add these in with the tomatoes.

Take about half of the pickled onions out of the jar with a fork and add to the other vegetables.

Onions Jar

Pour about 4 tablespoons of the onion liquid and two tablespoons olive oil into the salad and gently mix together.

Crumble a 4 ounce package of goat cheese and a few ounces of candied pecans (pecans are optional).

Beet Salad Bowl

Gently toss once more and serve on plates or in bowls. Add salt and pepper to taste.

I would recommend serving on top of greens such as butter lettuce, which I would have done if I had remembered to buy some (c’mon Michael), but it was still delicious, but not quite as pretty.

Pressure Cooker Tomato Beet Salad
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Ingredients
  • 7-8 beets (about 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 pounds), leaves trimmed with ½" of stems left on top
  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 4-ounce package goat cheese
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar (can use a mixture of apple cider vinegar and sherry vinegar)
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons pickling spice
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 pint heirloom cherry tomatoes (regular will work), halved
  • 2 ounces of pre-made candied pecans (available at most markets, optional)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Place steam tray in pressure cooker with 1-1/2 cups water.
  2. Add beets to steam tray
  3. Lock cover on pressure cooker and set time for 20 minutes at high pressure
  4. When time is up, remove beets to a plastic cutting board and let them cool
  5. Rinse inner pot of pressure cooker and replace
  6. To pressure cooker pot, add the vinegar, water, sugar, pickling spice and ½ teaspoon salt
  7. Set sauté setting on pressure cooker to high
  8. Bring to a boil, stirring often until sugar and salt are dissolved
  9. Turn off PC and let liquid cool for 2 minutes
  10. Strain liquid into a bowl
  11. Add onions to liquid, tossing to make sure all onion is coated
  12. Let set for about 10 minutes
  13. Transfer to a jar and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, and up to overnight
  14. Rub the beets with paper towel to remove skins, and break off stems and tips
  15. Place beets in a container and refrigerate until you assemble the salad
  16. When you are ready to put the salad together, cut the beets into 4-8 chunks each, depending on how large your beets are and put them in a serving bowl
  17. Add the halved tomatoes in with the beets
  18. Add the onions to the tomatoes and beets (I used about half of the onions, you can save the rest for other uses)
  19. Add in four tablespoons of the onion pickling liquid and 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  20. Toss gently, and add salt and pepper to taste
  21. Crumble the goat cheese on top and toss on the candied pecans
  22. Lightly toss cheese and pecans into the salad
  23. Serve on greens such as butter lettuce

Return Of The Instant Pot

The Instant Pot Duo 60 7-in-1 8 Months On

Instant_Pot2

So, I have been using my Instant Pot since the beginning of the year and it has since become part of my normal workflow.

I tend to use it for things that take advantage of its “set-in-and-forget-it” capabilities more than anything. In reality, you can “set it” and kind of “forget it” briefly. Which means you need to remember to release the pressure when you need to or some things will become overcooked.

Anyway, I use it use it most often for cooking sides and such while working on the main dish.

It is now my go-to pot for making rice while I am preparing an entree in one of the stovetop pots. If I am making a cup of rice (dry measurement), I still prefer my copper sauce pan, but if I am preparing 1-1/2 cups or more, I use the instant pot. And if I sauté some onions and substitute a can of Ro-Tel for some of the water, I have Spanish Rice in 4 minutes under pressure.

Making potatoes is a breeze also. Either mashed, steamed or boiled, the Instant Pot makes quick work of it.

Instant_Pot_Inside

After 8 months, I can’t remember the last time I used one of the programs. For the most part, all the programs do is set the time for a certain length. If it is not the exact amount of time that you want, you need to adjust anyway, so I find it easier to always use the manual setting.

I do use the sauté feature. One entree I find easier to make in the InstantPot is pasta. I just brown some ground beef or Italian sausage using sauté, add in some pasta, sauce and enough water to cover the pasta, switch to manual pressure mode and in 4 or 5 minutes under low pressure I have a complete dinner ready.

In fact, anything that requires low pressure I find myself gravitating to the InstantPot. Instead of trying to catch it at just the right moment and keeping the flame adjusted at the perfect amount to maintain low pressure, I just set the Instant Pot for low pressure and don’t have to worry about it.

Hard “boiled” eggs is another thing that comes out better since I have had the Instant Pot, because of the low pressure setting.

For one pot meals such as chili, stew and soups I still turn to the 7-quart Kuhn Rikon. The 6-quart capacity of the Instant pot is just a tad too small for these things.

I still haven’t gotten around to using the yogurt making feature, but that is still on my mental to-do list.

Instant_Pot1

Like my Fissler, I wouldn’t want the InstantPot to be my only pressure cooker, but in combination with my others, it is a very useful tool.

This doesn’t mean that for others, the InstantPot wouldn’t make a good “only” pressure cooker, and it would probably be a good place to start for many, if not most users. It can be quite a bit less intimidating if you have never used a pressure cooker before. But for me, I find the 7-quart stove top cooker to be more versatile.

The removable pot makes clean up a cinch. I have read some complaints that the silicone seal tends to hold odors and takes on a bad smell, but I haven’t had a problem at all. The seal gets washed after each use, and I haven’t once noticed any lingering odors.