It’s the homestretch to Christmas. A few days left before we feast. I’m cooking Beef Bourguignon in the Instant Pot, as we did a few years back. We’re having a trimmed down family dinner. We’re missing my eldest son who’s in California. Sadly, the pandemic and lockdown restrictions curtailed his plans to come home. But a few sacrifices this year, means we’ll all be together again soon for the next holidays.
We can still feast and celebrate the blessings we had this 2020. This rich beef stew, famously cooked by none other than the legendary Julia Child, is a family favorite of ours for holidays.
It’s hearty and filling. The thick, savory tomato sauces swirl around the tender, fall-off-the bone beef stew cubes, potatoes and carrots. I often serve this with steamed rice, mashed potatoes and salad greens.
Best thing about cooking in the Instant Pot is I can leave the multicooker simmering while I go and do other holiday stuff. The pandemic has not stopped me from sending out my hand-painted Christmas cards and home-baked pastry treats for close friends.
Cooking for months on end during a pandemic has taught me a lot about resilience, courage and how to substitute ingredients during a lockdown. And I have learned not to take anything for granted ever again.
May Christmas bring you, dear friends, all that you wish for – especially the good health of everyone dear to you and yours.
Maligayang Pasko! Be safe always.
As a holiday treat for you, I’m sharing Last Christmas , a Plaridel Award-winning essay I wrote, about the last thing my father said, on our last Christmas with him in the Philippines. Savor it again here on Positively Filipino online magazine.
Instant Pot Beef Bourguignon
- Instant Pot multicooker - 6 quarts or 8 quarts.
- 5 slices bacon, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
- 2 pounds beef cubes for stew; beef chuck
- 2 pounds beef short ribs
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 whole white or yellow onion, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup red wine
- 2 cups broth
- 1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce
- ½ cup tomato paste
- 2 whole potatoes, peeled, quartered
- 2 whole carrots,. peeled, sliced
- ½ Tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 pinch salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
- steamed rice
- mashed potatoes
- salad greens
To cook in the Instant Pot
- Click Saute button on keypad. When inside pot is hot enough after 1 to 2 minutes, add the chopped bacon.Sear the bacon for about 4 minutes. Set bacon aside on parchment paper. Fat will render from the bacon. Remove part of the bacon fat (discard unused) and leave only 1 tablespoon.
- Add the tablespoon of vegetable oil.Add the beef cubes and pieces. While beef is braising, sprinkle Worcestershire sauce over beef.Rotate the beef pieces with a long pair of tongs. Do this for about 5 to 6 minutes so the beef browns evenly.
- Saute the onions and garlic for about 2 minutes.Pour the wine and broth. Simmer fo 5 minutes so that the alchohol smell dissipates.
- Pour the tomato sauce and tomato paste. Stir to combine with the rest of the ingredients.
- Add carrots and potatoes. Return the crumbled bacon. Sprinkle the thyme, salt and black pepper.
- Click Cancel to turn off Saute function.
- Close and lock the lid. Set valve to sealing.Click Manual/ High Pressure/ Beef/Meats and set cooking time for 50 minutes.
- When timer buzzes to announce cooking is done, do a quick release.Unlock and open the lid carefully. Place the lid in a dry surface of the counter.
- In a small bowl, combine the flour and 1/2 cup of the broth from the stew. Using a spoon, blend flour + broth well till there are no more lumps.Return the flour+broth mixture to the simmering Beef Bourguignon.Stir with a spoon to combine. Close and lock the lid.Click Keep Warm for the residual heat to thicken the broth.Click Cancel to turn off the Instant Pot.
- Garnish with fresh parsley. Serve warm with rice, sides of mashed potatoes and salad greens.
Notes on the Instant Pot
- It takes about 17 minutes for the Instant Pot to preheat before cooking time begins.For safety, use accessories recommended for the Instant Pot or multicookers. For more information, please read the product manual.Instant Pot is the brand name of a multicooker that cooks in high and low pressure. Disclosure: This is not an ad. I was not paid to mention or endorse the brand. My opinions are my own.
Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided in the recipe links is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.
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