Monday, February 1, 2021

Cooking Under Pressure

Last week, I bought something that I have been wanting for a few years, an Instant Pot. I had never used one before because I will be honest, I've always been a little scared of cooking with a pressure cooker. However, I finally gave in and decided to give it a try. I had come across a few recipes that called for using an Instant Pot, so I decided I'd finally buy one. I am glad that I did. The first thing I cooked using it were some thick-cut pork chops, and they came out juicy and tender. However, I would probably not cook something like pork chops in it again because you don't get the sear on the pork chops like you would if you were frying them in a pan. The next recipe I made was chicken tacos. Now, this was a recipe that came out very well. Here's the recipe:

 

Instant Pot Chicken Tacos

 

Prep Time: 2 min

Cook Time: 15 min

Servings: 4 servings

 

Ingredients

  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning (store-bought or homemade)
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • ¾ cup salsa
  • ¼ cup tomatoes with green chilis (I usually use Rotel)
  • Taco shells or tortillas
  • Topping of your choice: cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, salsa, and/or sour cream

Preparation Steps

  1. Salt and pepper chicken breast.
  2. Place chicken breast in the bottom of the Instant Pot. 
  3. Add chicken broth, taco seasoning, salsa, and tomatoes and green chilis into a blender (I don’t like chunky sauce so I put all of it in the food processor or a blender and blend until smooth, but you can just mix the ingredients together without blending them). Pour mixture over chicken breasts.
  4. Close and lock the lid and turn the steam release handle to Sealing.
  5. Press “Pressure Cooker” and cook on high for 15 minutes.
  6. While the chicken is cooking, heat the taco shells or tortillas in the oven for 8-10 minutes at 325 degrees.
  7. Either let the pressure release naturally or use the quick release.
  8. For a thicker sauce, simmer on sauté mode for 5 minutes.
  9. Shred chicken with two forks. Combine with sauce in Instant Pot.
  10. Spoon chicken onto taco shells or tortillas and add preferred toppings.

Simple and delicious. I'm glad I got the Instant Pot. It does make cooking quicker and simpler. Also, the chicken was much more tender than whenever I tried to make it on the stovetop.

3 comments:

JiEL said...

OMG!
I have this pressure cooking pot for so many years.
My first one was bought in 1980 and did use it quite often too.
Faster to cook like potatoes and vegetables too.
Less water used too but the issue is not to over cook those and timing is very important to survey.

Happy for you to have bought this indispensable pot in a good kitchen.

Adam said...

After finding your recipe, I gathered the ingredients and I have the chicken and seasonings in my instant pot right now. I think I will let it naturally release pressure, since that seems to make meat and poultry more tender.

The instant pot isn't great for everything, but some things are just perfectly suited for this contraption.

I'm considering an air fryer, but the jury is still
out on that one.

Joe said...

Adam, I hope you enjoy the recipe. I have an air fryer as well and it’s great when you don’t want to heat up the house by using the oven. Tonight, I tried Mississippi pot roast in the Instant Pot. OMG, so good. Here’s the recipe for it:

Instant Pot Mississippi Pot Roast

Ingredients
• 3-5 lbs chuck roast (cubed, 2" pieces)
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• ¼ cup pepperoncini juice (from the jar)
• ¾ cup beef broth (low or no sodium)
• 1 oz ranch seasoning (1 packet)
• 1/2 oz onion soup mix (1/2 of a packet)
• .5 oz au jus mix (1/2 of a package)
• 5-10 pepperoncini (as per your spice preference)
• 3 tbsp butter (unsalted, cut into 4-6 slices)
• 2 tbsp cornstarch
• 2 tbsp water

Preparation Steps
1. Sear: Heat the olive oil in your Instant Pot on the sauté setting. Add the beef cubes, working in batches if needed, and sear them on all sides. Set the beef cubes aside.
2. De-glaze: Pour the pepperoncini juice and beef broth into the Instant Pot and scrape up all the bits from the bottom.
3. Arrange: Add the beef back to the pot. Add the ranch dressing, onion soup mix and pepperoncini to the pot and give it a stir to coat in the the liquid. Arrange the butter over the beef.
4. Cook: Secure the Instant Pot lid and turn the valve from VENT to SEAL. Cook on high pressure for 60 minutes, then let the pressure release for 15 minutes. Quick release any remaining pressure.
5. Shred: Transfer the beef from the Instant Pot to a bowl and shred it with two forks. Meanwhile, bring the sauce to a bubble over the sauté setting.
6. Thicken: Whisk the cornstarch and water together in a small bowl, and stir it into the sauce. Stir until it thickens. Add the shredded meat back to the Instant Pot and stir to coat well in the sauce.

Notes
I made half of the recipe. You can also use just the onion soup mix or just the au jus, or a mixture like I did. I served it over some rice.