My little sister came for a visit and about two hours before I had to go get my daughter from school, I realized I had nothing planned and no money for take out. I could, however, whip up a beef stew in the pressure cooker. Got a giant 3 pound boneless chuck roast, a bag of rainbow carrots, about 8-12 large brown crimini mushrooms, some beef stock, preservative free tomato paste, can of charred tomatoes, diced, a diced white onion, Caserecce Pasta(you could substitute some fusilli or other thick durum wheat pasta) and some elephant garlic(diced)  and lots of Penzy’s spices. You can find the spices here: penzy’s.com. It is also important to have a good pressure cooker that you trust. I use the same cuisinart unit my mom has, and it has a simmering or browning feature. Here is the product page. Electric pressure cooker

  • First, it’s important to break the chuck roast down into sizable pieces, and season them well with lots of garlic, salt and pepper, I used a teeny bit of the Bourbon Smoked Paprika sissypoo got us last year(ok, the last of it!) and some Foxpoint and Sunny Paris seasoning from Penzys, with about ½ a cup of whole wheat flour(sifted) in a large gallon sized ziplock bag. Turn to coat the meat evenly. Brown in avocado or olive oil on all sides until crispy and remove to a towel clad plate to drain and hold. (At this point I had to leave for a bit, but I put the meat in the oven on very low degree and just went with it) Reserved flour for later. 
  • Chop your onion, garlic, carrots, mushroom in to large chunks. I found it helpful to get them lined up in order, saving the mushroom until the onion and carrot are soft. Season with a little salt and pepper, a hefty pinch of oregano and marjoram, and little more of the Sunny Paris and Fox Pointe seasonings. Add a splash of wine and stir, simmering for about three minutes. Add meat, stir to combine. 
  • Next, add the tomato paste, and diced fire roasted tomatoes. Combine. Add ¾ of one box of beef broth(try to use low sodium broth) and homemade stock is certainly a good substitute. Place cover on pressure cooker and set on high for 35 minutes. 
  • After the first round is done pressuring, release the steam and lid, adding about a cup of small diced snap peas and about 20-30 cherry tomatoes, and the pasta(about a quarter cup). Replace lid, set to pressure on low for 16 minutes. To my horror, I opened the pot boiling and about to spill over, but the contents were perfect. Meat and veggies were extra tender and the sauce was thick and flavorful after a good stir. Stir in reserved flour and a splash of balsalmic vinager just before service.

To serve, I garnished with a teeny dollop of creme fraiche and sprinkled with Bonnes Herbs, though you could just use chives or parsely.  The creaminess of the creme fraiche really brought the dish together! It was so good and hearty!! And the slight bit of pasta was perfect, slightly al dente, but still filling.  

  
For best results, I recommend letting it sit over some time to soften the meat up some, but at this point I would say, Bon Appitite!  The wine of choice was a very nice Pinot Noir from Diamond Ridge from the year which my daughter was born and was full of rich flavors. 

 

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