Noble Savage: Things sure do take a while to come to South Africa. I’ve been reading about the Instant Pot on Buzzfeed for years, so when we finally saw that it’s available, we immediately rushed out to get one. (Full disclosure: we were intimidated by it, so didn’t use it for months.)
Basically the Instant Pot is seven kitchen appliances in one. The two features most users will use often will be the slow cooker and the pressure cooker functions. Now, we’re familiar with using a slow cooker, but a pressure cooker has always been somewhat frightening. Probably due to the fact that my grandmother once managed to explode one in her kitchen…
There’s a myriad recipes available online (we found these on Yummly), so getting started is not a problem. Once you’ve got the hang of the measures and timing, it becomes very easy to tweak and create your own. And the pot didn’t blow up even a little. So let’s go through a few dishes we tried out!
Chorizo Penne in Cream Cheese Mustard Sauce
- 500g penne
- 2 ½ cups chicken stock
- 2-3 tsp cajun seasoning (I used Robertson’s Cajun rub)
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 120g cream cheese
- 2 tsp wholegrain mustard
Add your penne to the Instant Pot, and cover with stock (try to cover it as much as possible).
Add in the cajun spice, butter, and diced tomatoes. Slice the chorizo in thin-ish slices, and add on top. Lock the lid in place. Select Pressure Cook, and set to 5 minutes. Once done, you can either let the steam release naturally (about 20 minutes), or you can quick release – just watch out for the steam.
Select the saute setting, and stir in the the cream cheese. Once it’s nicely stirred in, stir in the mustard, and switch off the Instant Pot. As the chorizo is a spicy sausage, serve it with a slightly chilled Shiraz.
I’ve been looking for Korean pepper paste for ever, and was very excited to find some (albeit a Chinese knock-off) in a little Chinese grocery shop in Pretoria.
I obviously had to do something with it:
- ½ cup soy sauce
- ⅓ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup beef stock
- 5 minced garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp each sesame oil, rice wine, and grated ginger
- 2-4 tbsp Korean pepper paste, depending on how spicy you want it
- Salt and pepper
- 500g beef strips or squares
- Sesame seeds, for garnish
Put your beef in the instant pot. Whisk together all the ingredients (except the sesame seeds), and pour over the meat. Make sure the lid is locked back on. Select the Pressure Cook function, and set it to 12 minutes. With this one, rather let the steam escape naturally, as the beef will become more tender.
Serve with some Soba noodles, and an off-sweet white, like a Gewurztraminer. Easy as that!
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 500g lean beef mince
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 minced garlic cloves
- 1 punnet shimeji mushrooms
- Salt and pepper
- 1 tsp paprika
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- 3 tbsp all purpose flour
- 250g tagliatelle balls
- 2 ½ cups beef stock
- ¾ sour cream
- Fresh Italian parsley, to garnish
Select the saute function, and add butter and garlic to the pot. Once melted, fry the onions until soft. Add the mince, and fry until it’s browned, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and mushrooms, and season with salt and pepper to your liking. Add in the paprika, wine, flour, and stir everything together.
Place the pasta balls on top, and cover with the beef stock.
Lock the lid in place, select Pressure Cook, and set for 3 minutes. Once done, manually release the steam and open the lid. Stir in the sour cream, and check if you’re seasoning is right. Garnish with Italian parsley, and serve with a robust red blend.