INSTANT POT BEEF STEW
- 1 kg boneless chuck roast
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil — divided
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt — divided
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper — divided
- 1 large yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 medium carrots
- baby marrow – optional
- baby corn – optional
- 2 medium russet potatoes
- 250 ml warm water with beef stock cube
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 300 ml passatta or 1 can diced tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch tablespoons water
- fresh parsley — optional for serving
Cut the chuck roast into 1 1/2-inch cubes, removing any large, tough pieces of fat or gristle.
Turn the Instant Pot to SAUTE.
Add 1 tablespoon of the oil. Once the oil is hot and shimmering (a drop of water should sizzle if added to the surface of the pot), add half of the beef, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. The cubes should be in a single layer and not too crowded so that they brown nicely. Let the cubes of beef cook undisturbed for 4 to 5 minutes (resist the urge to peek!), until the bottom of the cubes develop a dark-brown crust and come away from the pan easily. Turn and continue searing until dark and brown all over, about 4 additional minutes. Transfer the seared meat to a clean plate or bowl.
Add another 1 tablespoon olive oil to the pot. Once hot, add the remaining beef and remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Sear the remaining beef. If the pan gets too dry, add a bit more oil as needed.
While the meat browns, dice the yellow onion. Mince the garlic. Peel the carrots and cut them into 1/2-inch-thick diagonal slices.
Remove the second batch of browned beef to the plate with the first batch. Add the remaining tablespoon olive oil and the onion to the Instant Pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion begins to soften and browns, about 6 minutes.
While the onion cooks, scrub and peel the potato and cut it into 3/4-inch chunks. If you haven’t finished cutting the carrots, do so now.
Add the garlic to the Instant Pot. Cook, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the beef broth and use a spoon to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Make sure you remove every last bit of stuck-on food so that you don’t receive a “burn” warning.
Stir in the carrots, potatoes, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaf, thyme, and the browned beef, along with any meat juices that have collected on the plate. Pour passatta or diced tomatoes on top. Do not stir again.
Close and seal the Instant Pot. Cook on high pressure for 35 minutes, then allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes. Vent to release any remaining pressure, then carefully open the lid. Remove and discard the bay leaf.
In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water to create a slurry.
Add to the Instant Pot and stir until the stew thickens.
Serve hot, sprinkled with fresh parsley.
Photo and recipe adapted by Juanita Vermeulen