Sunday, January 1, 2017

HOMEMADE BEEF STEW - Electric Pressure Cooking

This Homemade Beef Stew is one of my family favorites! Last year, I broke down and purchased an Electric Pressure Cooker after hearing my mother rave about these amazing dishes she was cooking up that was taking very little time. Although I owned a regular stove top version of the pressure cooker (it was collecting dust in storage) I was intrigued at the idea of being able to PLUG-IN an electric cooker, stuff it full of raw meat/veggies and just literally walk away till dinner is hot and ready!

This cooker is such a TIME SAVER and I find myself cooking from it at least 3 or more times a week. I will always own one. Thank you, Mom!

So here's the recipe to one of our favorite dishes that takes less than 30 mintues...

                        Fast & Easy Homemade Beef Stew

INGREDIENTS:   Carrots, Potatoes, Onions, Celery

You can use either STEW MEAT already precut from the grocery store, or use your own meat (skirt steaks, Roasts, etc.) If the meat is prone to being tough, pressure cook it first till tenderized, and then cut into stew size and cook this recipe as a SOUP setting.

SPICES:  Salt, Pepper, Garlic... and if you want, also add a packet of Beef Stew seasoning mix. Sometimes, I'll add my own dehydrated onions to the batch.

After stew meat, spices, chopped celery and onions are in pot... I add WHOLE potatoes and carrots. Very little prep is needed as the cooker will tenderize these vegetables.

After ingredients are added, fill the pot with water to the FULL line, (or less if you prefer a thicker consistency)
Although there is a SOUP setting, I am using raw meat, so I'm selecting MEAT, and for TASTE (my cooker has a section where I can request extra tender for child/elderly which I prefer) I selected the highest setting, which means my cooker will take only 29 Minutes to cook the Beef Stew.

Although this recipe takes less than 30 mintues, it will still take the cooker a few minutes to build pressure, and after the timer goes off in 29 minutes, it will take an additional 5-10 minutes to decompress. The lid on the cooker has a safety feature where you can't accidentally remove lid before it's done decompressing.  What I especially love about this cooker is that prep time is very minimal and I can walk away when timer is set.

Since I pressure can a lot of food (which is different from pressure cooking) I have to babysit my stove top for hours on end till my home canning is complete. This electric pressure cooker is a luxury and has made life so much easier when trying to decide what to fix for dinner at the last minute. Who would have guessed that in less than half an hour (instead of several hours), you can have a pot roast with potatoes and vegetables waiting on the spur!

After cooker has depressurized, remove lid and stir contents, breaking apart the potatoes and carrots.

Dinner's ready!