Old-Fashioned Beef Stew

1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 pound beef stewing meat, trimmed and cut into inch cubes
5 teaspoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 cup red wine
3 1/2 cups beef broth, homemade or low-sodium canned
2 bay leaves
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
5 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch rounds
2 large baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2 teaspoons salt

Combine the flour and pepper in a bowl, add the beef and toss to coat well. Heat 3 teaspoons of the oil in a large pot. Add the beef a few pieces at a time; do not overcrowd. Cook, turning the pieces until beef is browned on all sides, about 5 minutes per batch; add more oil as needed between batches.

Remove the beef from the pot and add the vinegar and wine. Cook over medium-high heat, scraping the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen any browned bits. Add the beef, beef broth and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a slow simmer.

Cover and cook, skimming broth from time to time, until the beef is tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Add the onions and carrots and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Add the potatoes and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes more. Add broth or water if the stew is dry. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Ladle among 4 bowls and serve.

Braised Fresh Black-Eyed Peas With Baby Turnips

1 bunch baby white turnips with greens, such as Hokkaido (8 ounces)
4 tablespoons French-style unsalted butter
2 small red onions, diced
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 1/2 pounds fresh black-eyed peas in pods, shelled
Fresh mint leaves

Remove the green tops from the turnips, and cut the turnips into quarters or sixths depending on size. Separate leaves from stems and discard stems; wash leaves.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a 3- to 4-quart shallow stovetop braiser over medium heat. Sweat onion in butter for 1 minute, until translucent. Add turnips and sweat 2 minutes, until glossy and starting to “shine.”

Run a knife through the leaves once, maybe twice, and add to the pot. Season with a healthy pinch of salt and stir until leaves are also starting to sweat and wilt.

Add peas and 1 cup of water. Season with two large pinches of salt (restaurant-chef pinches, not home-cook pinches). Cover. Reduce heat. Simmer for approximately 10 minutes.

Stir. Add 1 cup water. Add pinch salt. Re-cover. Simmer for 10 more minutes.

Stir. Simmer for 10 to 15 more minutes, or until beans are cooked and soft and starchy inside, turnips are cooked and water has turned grayish purple. Taste for salt and season. Let cool completely on stovetop with heat off.

Cover and refrigerate overnight to allow everything to meld and settle. Serve the next day, reheated over low until tepid, stirring in remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to melt gently into the broth. Finish with a shower of fresh mint and ground black pepper.

Firehouse Chili Gumbo

FOR THE CHILI:
2 tablespoons neutral oil, like canola or grapeseed
3 pounds ground beef, ideally coarse-ground
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper, or to taste
2 tablespoons chile powder
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons steak sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes

FOR THE GUMBO:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced
2 medium shallots, peeled and diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
3 ribs celery, trimmed and diced
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 6-ounce cans tomato paste
2 8-ounce cans tomato sauce
1 to 2 cups tomato juice
1 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon apple-cider vinegar, or to taste
2 tablespoons hot sauce, or to taste

Make the chili. Heat the oil in a large skillet or heavy-bottomed pot set over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook the beef, stirring often, until it has begun to brown at the edges. Using a slotted spoon, transfer browned meat to a bowl.

Pour off excess fat, turn heat down to medium and return the browned beef to the skillet or pot. Add salt, peppers, chile powder, turmeric, oregano and cumin, and stir to combine. Add steak sauce, Worcestershire sauce and diced tomatoes, and stir again. Cover the skillet or pot, and cook, stirring a few times, for 15 minutes or so.

Make the gumbo. Place a large pot with a heavy bottom over medium heat, and put the butter and oil into it. When the butter is melted and foaming, sprinkle the flour into the pan, and whisk to combine. Continue whisking until the mixture is golden brown, approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Add the onion, shallots, bell peppers, celery and garlic, and cook, stirring often, until the vegetables have started to soften, approximately 10 to 15 minutes.

Make the chili gumbo. Add the beef mixture to the pot with the vegetables along with the tomato paste, tomato sauce, tomato juice and ketchup, and stir to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 30 to 45 minutes, then add apple-cider vinegar and hot sauce to taste. Take the pot off the heat, and serve, or allow to cool and refrigerate overnight to allow the flavors to cure. Heat before serving.

Dijon and Cognac Stew

1/4 pound salt pork, diced
1 large onion, finely diced
3 shallots, chopped
2 to 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 pounds beef chuck, in 1-inch cubes
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Kosher salt and black pepper
1/2 cup Cognac
2 cups beef stock
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons Pommery mustard or other whole-grain Dijon mustard
4 large carrots, peeled and cut into half-moon slices
1/2 pound mushrooms, stemmed, cleaned and quartered
1/4 cup red wine

Place salt pork in a Dutch oven over low heat, and cook until fat is rendered. Remove solid pieces with a slotted spoon, and discard. Raise heat, and add onion and shallots. Cook until softened but not browned, 10 to 15 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to a large bowl.

If necessary, add 2 tablespoons butter to the pot to augment fat. Dust beef cubes with flour, and season with salt and pepper. Shake off excess flour, and place half the cubes in the pot. Cook over medium-high heat until well browned, almost crusty, on all sides, then transfer to a bowl with onions. Repeat with remaining beef.

Add Cognac to the empty pot, and cook, stirring, until the bottom is deglazed and the crust comes loose. Add stock, Dijon mustard and 1 tablespoon Pommery mustard. Whisk to blend, then return meat and onion mixture to pot. Lower heat, partly cover, and simmer gently until meat is very tender, about 1 1/2 hours.
Add carrots, and continue simmering for 30 minutes, or until slices are tender. As they cook, heat 2 tablespoons butter in a medium skillet over medium-high, and sauté mushrooms until browned.

Stir mushrooms into stew along with remaining mustard and red wine. Simmer 5 minutes, then taste, and adjust seasoning. Serve hot.

Tip:
For a slow-cooker version, render the salt pork in a large sauté pan, then sear the flour-dusted beef cubes in the fat. While the beef is browning, add onions, shallots, carrots, mushrooms and red wine to the slow cooker, along with the browned beef. Add Cognac to the empty pan, and deglaze. Add 1 cup stock (instead of 2), Dijon mustard and 1 tablespoon Pommery mustard. Transfer to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons Pommery mustard and warm through before serving.

Spicy Peanut Stew With Ginger and Tomato

1 medium-size eggplant, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 teaspoon salt, more to taste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 cup peanut oil
2 shallots, thinly sliced
2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 to 2 jalapeño chilies, seeded and minced
1 onion, chopped
1/3 cup tomato paste
1 small (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, preferably roasted
4 cups vegetable stock or water
1/2 cup natural unsweetened peanut butter (creamy or chunky)
1 medium-size zucchini, 6 to 8 ounces, cut in quarters lengthwise, then sliced 1/2 -inch thick
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (1 to 2 lemons)
1/3 cup coarsely chopped cilantro leaves, plus whole leaves for garnish
Cooked rice, for serving
Chopped roasted salted peanuts, for garnish (optional)

In a colander, toss eggplant with 1 teaspoon salt; set aside for 30 minutes. Rinse, drain well and set aside. In a small bowl, combine cumin, coriander, turmeric and cayenne; set aside.

In a large pot, heat 3 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add shallots and fry, stirring often, until soft, crisp and caramelized, about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer shallots to a large bowl, leaving oil in pot.

Raise heat to high and add eggplant. Cook, stirring often, until lightly browned and just tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer to bowl with shallots.

Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pot and heat over medium-high heat. Add ginger and chilies and cook, stirring for 30 seconds.

Add spices and cook, stirring, 30 seconds more. Add onion and cook, stirring to scrape up any browned bits, until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add tomato paste and cook, stirring, 1 minute.

Add diced tomatoes, stock or water, eggplant, shallots and a sprinkling of salt. Bring to a boil and cook 5 minutes. Place peanut butter in a medium bowl, add one or two ladlefuls of hot soup, and stir until emulsified, then pour mixture back into soup.

Reduce heat to a simmer, add zucchini, cover and cook 10 to 15 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Turn off heat and stir in lemon juice and chopped cilantro. Let cool slightly and taste; add salt if necessary. Serve in bowls with rice, garnished with cilantro leaves and chopped peanuts, if desired.

Egg Drop Soup

4 cups chicken stock (about 1 liter, organic or homemade preferred!)
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon turmeric (Or 5 drops yellow food coloring. Optional, but if you want “the look…”)
3 tablespoons cornstarch (mixed with 1/3 cup water)
3 eggs (lightly beaten)
1 scallion (chopped)

Bring the chicken stock to a simmer in a medium soup pot. Stir in the sesame oil, salt, sugar, and white pepper. Add in the turmeric or 5 drops of yellow food coloring, if using. This will give the soup that rich restaurant-style yellow color, but it is optional. Taste the soup, and adjust the seasoning if needed.

Next add the cornstarch and water mixture. Make sure the cornstarch and water is mixed well, as the cornstarch settles very quickly. Stir the soup continuously as you drizzle in the slurry, or you’ll get clumps of cooked starch in your soup. Use more or less starch if you like a thicker or thinner soup. You can also add the starch in a couple small batches, let the soup simmer for a couple of minutes, then check to see if the consistency is to your liking.

Now we’re ready for the most exciting part: the egg. This recipe calls for the egg to be lightly beaten, which results in both white and yellow egg swirls. The speed at which you stir the soup when adding the egg also determines whether you get large “egg flowers” or small egg flowers (i.e. swirly bits of egg). Use a ladle to stir the soup in a circular motion, and slowly drizzle in the egg until you have added it all.

Ladle the soup into bowls, top with scallions, and serve!

10-Minute Tomato Egg Drop Noodle Soup

1 serving noodle of your choice
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 clove garlic (minced)
1 scallion (chopped, white and green portions separated)
2 small tomatoes (cut into bite-sized pieces)
2 1/2 cups chicken stock (or vegetable or mushroom stock)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
Salt (to taste)
1 egg (beaten)

Boil a pot of water to cook the noodles according to the package instructions. Drain and transfer to a large soup bowl. Toss with a few drops of oil to keep the noodles from sticking to each other.

At the same time, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in wok or pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and the scallion whites, and cook for 30 seconds. Then add the tomatoes and stir-fry for a couple minutes, until the oil starts to turn red and the tomatoes soften.

Add the stock, soy sauce, white pepper, sesame oil, and salt to taste. Cover and simmer for 3 minutes, still using medium heat. Now is a good time to beat the egg in a small bowl and have it ready.

Uncover the wok/pot, turn up the heat slightly, and slowly stir in the beaten egg. Turn off the heat and pour the soup onto the cooked noodles. Top with the chopped scallion greens (you can also add chopped cilantro if you want). Serve. Easy, right?!

15-Minute Coconut Curry Noodle Soup

2 tablespoons oil
3 garlic cloves (chopped)
1 tablespoon fresh ginger (grated)
3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
8 oz. boneless chicken breast or thighs (225g, sliced)
4 cups chicken broth (950 ml)
1 cup water (235 ml)
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2/3 cup coconut milk (160 ml)
6 oz. dried rice vermicelli noodles (170g)
lime wedges, sliced red onion, red chilis, cilantro, scallions (to garnish)

In a large pot over medium heat, add the oil, garlic, ginger, and Thai red curry paste. Fry for 5 minutes, until fragrant. Add the chicken and cook for a couple minutes, just until the chicken turns opaque.

Add the chicken broth, water, fish sauce, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil. At this point, taste the broth for salt and adjust seasoning accordingly (add salt if needed, or if it’s too salty, add a bit of water). Pour the boiling soup over the dried vermicelli noodles in your serving bowls, add a squeeze of lime juice and your garnishes, and serve. The noodles will be ready to eat in a couple minutes.

(Alternatively, you can add the noodles to the boiling broth to cook them, and then divide among serving bowls).

Chickpea Vegetable Soup With Parmesan, Rosemary and Lemon

1 whole clove
1/2 onion, sliced root to stem so it stays intact, peeled
1 pound dried chickpeas, soaked overnight and drained
1 sprig rosemary, plus 1 teaspoon finely chopped leaves
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 fresh bay leaves or 1 dried
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt, more to taste
1 small Parmesan rind, plus 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1 cup diced tomatoes, canned or fresh
2 medium carrots, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
2 celery stalks, sliced 1/4-inch thick
Zest of 1 lemon
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Insert the clove into the onion. Put the onion in a large pot with the chickpeas, rosemary sprig, garlic, bay leaves, olive oil, salt and cheese rind. Add 5 cups water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for about an hour, or until chickpeas are tender.

Add the tomatoes, carrots and celery, cover loosely, and simmer until the vegetables are soft, about 25 minutes longer. While soup simmers, mix the chopped rosemary, grated Parmesan, lemon zest and pepper in a small bowl.

Season the soup to taste and ladle into bowls. Sprinkle with the Parmesan mixture.

Roasted Tomato and White Bean Stew

1/2 cup roughly chopped Italian parsley leaves and tender stems
2 teaspoons lemon zest (from 1 large lemon)
2 (10-ounce) containers cherry or grape tomatoes
1/4 cup olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons and more for drizzling (optional)
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
2 (15-ounce) cans white beans (such as butter or cannellini), rinsed
1 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken broth, or water
Flaky salt, for serving (optional)
Toasted bread, for serving

Heat the oven to 425 degrees. In a small bowl, gently toss together the parsley and lemon zest with your hands until well combined; set aside.

In a large baking dish or on a sheet pan, toss the tomatoes with 1/4 cup oil and thyme; season well with salt and pepper. Roast tomatoes until they have collapsed and begin to turn golden around the edges, 20 to 25 minutes.

When the tomatoes are almost done roasting, heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large (12-inch), deep skillet or Dutch oven over medium. Add the onion, garlic and red-pepper flakes and cook until the onion is softened and the garlic is fragrant, 4 to 5 minutes.

Stir in the rinsed beans and broth and bring to a simmer. With the back of a spoon or spatula, gently smash about 1/2 cup of the beans so they slightly thicken the broth. If you want a thicker stew, crush some more of the beans. Season with salt and pepper.
When the tomatoes are finished roasting, add them directly to the stew along with any juices that have been released. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes more so the flavors become friendly; season to taste with salt.

Ladle into shallow bowls. Top each serving with some of the lemon-parsley mixture and drizzle with some more olive oil, and season with flaky salt, if you like. Serve with toasted bread.

Reader ideas:

Add sage and swiss chard.

Add tomato paste for a richer flavor and red color (as was shown in tbe picture).

Add sausage.

Pressure Cooker Khichdi with Mixed Lentils and Vegetables

2 tablespoons ghee
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon ginger
1 carrot peeled and sliced
1/4 cup green beans chopped
1/4 cup frozen green peas
1 red potato cubed
1 tomato diced
1 cup cauliflower chopped
1 cup cabbage chopped
1 cup spinach chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 cup white rice
1 cup mixed lentils moong, masoor, toor and chana daal
6 cups water
1/4 cup cilantro chopped, for garnish

Turn the Instant Pot to Saute Mode and heat ghee. Add cumin seeds and ginger.

Cook for 30 seconds. Add all the vegetables – carrots, beans, peas, tomato, potato, cauliflower, cabbage, and spinach.

Add turmeric, red chili powder, and salt. Mix well.

Next add the rice and mixed lentils. Add 6 cups of water. Give a quick stir and close the Instant Pot lid with the pressure valve to Sealing.

Press the rice button followed by natural pressure release. (Note, for short-grained rice, I dropped the Breville rice pre-set to three minutes. This gave a nice mushy texture that could be thinned for a porridgy texture.

Open the Instant Pot and garnish with cilantro.

Serve hot with roasted papad and pickle.

Notes:
Substitute the 4 different lentils with any lentils you may have on hand. It could be just 1 cup of moong daal or 1/2 cup of moong daal and 1/2 cup of chana daal. Just make sure you use 1 cup of lentils.

You can use any combination of vegetables. Just make sure to add about 4 cups of chopped veggies. Frozen mixed vegetables also work well in this recipe.

The water ratio in this recipe is 3 times the rice and lentils together which makes a soft, porridge-like consistency for the final dish. To make dry-ish khichdi reduce the water to 4 cups.

Pressure Cooker Masoor Dal

1 tbsp coconut oil (or any vegetable oil. To make the dal oil-free, use 1/4 cup of water to saute)
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 large onion (finely diced)
1 sprig curry leaves (optional, can be replaced with 2 tbsp chopped cilantro)
4 medium tomatoes (finely diced)
1-inch piece ginger (grated or crushed into a paste)
4 cloves garlic (minced or crushed into a paste)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp ground coriander
1/2 to 1 tsp red pepper flakes (or if using dry red chili peppers use one or two based on how much heat you can tolerate)
1 cup red lentils (masoor dal)
1/2 cup coconut milk
Salt to taste
Lemon juice for squeezing on top

Heat the oil in an Instant Pot set to the “saute” function set to “normal”. Add the mustard seeds and when they begin to sputter, add the onions, curry leaves, ginger and garlic. (If making this oil-free, add the mustard seeds to the dry IP liner after it heats up, then, when they sputter, add the onions, ginger and garlic and then add in 1/4 cup water)

Saute, stirring frequently, until the onions soften and just start to brown. Add the tomatoes, turmeric, coriander powder and red pepper flakes and mix well. You can use an Instant Pot glass lid or any glass lid that fits to cover the pot at this time and let the tomatoes cook 3-4 minutes until they are broken down and very pulpy. Stir a couple of times during cooking.

Add the dal to the pot and stir to mix, then add in 4 cups water. Give everything a good stir then click in the Instant Pot lid. Set the IP at manual pressure for 10 minutes.

After cooking, wait either until pressure releases automatically, or, if you’re in a rush, wait 10 minutes after the end of cooking, then carefully quick-release according to instructions.
Using a ladle, stir in the coconut milk and salt to taste. At this point you can garnish with more cilantro, if you like, or serve as is. Always top the dal with a final squeeze of lemon juice for the perfect finish!

Notes
To make this dal with my basic tomato onion masala sauce, add the mustard seeds to the oil, and after they sputter, add 2 cups of the masala sauce. Mix well, then proceed with step 3 of the recipe and continue. This will cut down almost all of your hands-on sauteing time.

Pressure Cooker Creamy Moong Dal

1 1/2 cups mung lentils (split yellow moong dal, without the skin)
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 green chile peppers (like serrano, split down the middle)
1 tbsp ginger (grated)
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
10 cloves garlic (you can use more for an even more garlicky dal.
Peel the garlic cloves and crush the whole cloves with the flat portion of the knife. Chop roughly–there should be some large pieces of garlic in the dal)
Salt to taste
2 tbsp cilantro (optional. Chopped, for garnish)

Wash the lentils in running water, then place in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot with the turmeric, chile peppers and ginger. Add water to cover by two inches. Cook the lentils for three whistles in the pressure cooker or 10 minutes in the Instant Pot set to manual pressure.

If you don’t have an IP or pressure cooker, you can cook the dal on the stovetop. Place the lentils in a pan with the ginger, turmeric and water. Bring to a boil, cover, and let the lentils simmer until done. Check frequently and add more water if it starts to look dry.

Once the lentils have cooked, remove half of them to a blender and puree until creamy. Add water if needed. This is not absolutely necessary but it gives the dal a really creamy, velvety texture that’s amazing.

Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the black mustard seeds and, when they sputter, add the garlic. Saute the garlic over medium-low heat until it begins to turn golden-brown and fragrant, but don’t let it burn. Stir constantly.

Once the garlic turns brown, add the cooked moong–both the blended and non-blended portions. Mix well and add more water if needed. Dal should be a little runny and soupy–it shouldn’t be too thick and gloppy.

Bring the dal to boil and add salt to taste. Let the dal continue cooking another 5 minutes.

Turn off heat and garnish with cilantro. The dal thickens quite a bit as it stands, so add water if it thickens too much before serving. Always check for salt and add more if needed after you add water to the dal.

Pressure Cooker Chana Masala

1 cup dried chickpeas rinsed
3 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons ghee
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 yellow onion finely diced
1 teaspoon ginger grated
1 tablespoon garlic minced
1 tablespoon ground coriander
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 to 2 teaspoons kashmiri red chili powder
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 plum tomatoes finely diced or 1 cup canned tomatoes with juice
1/4 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 cup cilantro chopped

In a bowl, combine the chickpeas and 2 cups of warm water and let soak for at least 4 hours or up to overnight. Drain the chickpeas and set aside.

Select the high saute setting on the Instant Pot and heat the ghee. Add the cumin seeds directly to the hot oil and cook until they start to sizzle, about 1 minute.

Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Cover the pot with a glass lid to speed up the process.

Add the ginger and garlic and saute until aromatic, about 1 minute.

Add the coriander, salt, chili powder, turmeric and chickpeas; pour in the 1.5 cups water; and stir well with a wooden spoon nudging loose any browned bits from the pot bottom.

Secure the lid and set the pressure release to sealing. Press the Cancel button to reset the cooking program, then select pressure cook/manual(hi) and set the cooking time to 35 minutes.

Allow natural pressure release. Open the Instant Pot and stir in the tomatoes and garam masala. Select the high saute setting and cook until the tomatoes soften, about 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro.

Serve with hot parathas or puri. For gluten-free options serve with jeera rice or steamed rice.

Pressure Cooker Misir Wot – Ethiopian Spicy Lentil Stew

1 cup split red lentils
2 tablespoons olive oil or ghee
1 medium red onion diced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger grated
4 cloves garlic minced
1 to 3 tablespoons berbere spice blend
1 teaspoon salt
2 to 3 cups water divided
2 tablespoons cilantro chopped (optional)
1/2 lime

Turn Instant Pot to Saute mode. After the ‘hot’ sign displays, add oil and onions. Mix well. Cook covered with a glass lid for 2 minutes.

Add ginger and garlic. Mix well and cook for 30 seconds.
Add red lentils, berbere spice blend, and salt. Add 2 cups of water and mix everything together.

Close Instant Pot lid with pressure valve to sealing. Cook on Manual(Hi) for 15 mins followed by natural pressure release.

Open Instant Pot, Stir everything. Add more water to bring the stew to desired consistency. Mix well.

Garnish with chopped cilantro and squeeze fresh lime juice on top before serving with steamed rice or bread.

Misir Wot stovetop recipe:
Heat oil or ghee in a heavy bottom pot or stovetop pressure cooker. Add onions and sauté for 2 minutes. Add ginger and garlic. Mix well and cook for 30 seconds.

Add red lentils, berbere spice blend, and salt. Add 3 cups of water and mix everything together.

Cook covered on medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes. If using a pot stir occasionally and add more water if needed. Adjust salt and add more Berbere spice as per your taste.

Garnish with chopped cilantro and squeeze fresh lime juice.

Pressure Cooker Chicken Cilantro Soup

2 tablespoons oil divided
1 tablespoon garlic minced
3 green chillies sliced or 1 to 2 jalapenos
2 tablespoons grated ginger divided
1 cup cilantro stems roughly chopped
1 pound chicken breasts
12 black peppercorns
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups water
2 cups low sodium chicken broth we used better than bouillon
1 cup cabbage thinly sliced
1 cup carrots julienned
3 tablespoons corn starch or arrowroot powder mixed in 1 cup of water
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper optional
1/2 cup cilantro chopped
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Turn Instant Pot to Saute mode and heat half of the oil. Add garlic, green chilies, half of the ginger and cilantro stems. Mix well.

Add chicken breasts, black peppercorn, salt, water and broth. Give a quick stir and close Instant Pot with pressure valve to sealing.

Pressure cook for 10 minutes at high pressure followed by Natural Pressure Release.

Open Instant Pot and take the chicken breasts out. Shred the chicken with a fork and keep aside.

Take a large bowl and strain the broth. Squeeze out any juices by gently pressing the stems in the strainer. Discard the stems from the strainer. Reserve the broth.

Rinse and dry the Instant Pot insert. Put the insert back and set the Instant Pot to sauté mode. Add the remaining oil, cabbage, carrots and remaining ginger. Mix well.

Add shredded chicken, reserved broth, and corn starch water.
Mix well and bring the soup to a gentle boil. Turn Instant Pot off. Add fresh ground pepper, lemon juice, and chopped cilantro. Enjoy hot!

Notes:
Vegetarian Version
Skip the chicken all together and follow the remaining recipe to make a perfect vegan soup. Just replace the chicken broth with vegetable broth. If you can find enoki mushroom, they add a great crunch too. Stir them in the end along with the carrots and cabbage.

Add small cubed extra firm tofu in the end for added proteins. You can also add baked tofu.

Variations
Adjust the corn starch or arrowroot powder, to the textures you prefer.

Adjust green chilies and fresh ginger to take the spice level up or down.

Go ahead and double up on cilantro if you have extra.

Pressure Cooker Pasta e Fagioli

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 carrots peeled and sliced
2 celery sticks thinly sliced
10 garlic cloves minced
1 big russet potato peeled and cut into small cubes
1 cup tomato sauce marinara sauce
1 can cannellini beans rinsed and drained
1 cup ditalini pasta
1 teaspoon dried parsley or 1 tablespoon fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper optional
4 cups vegetable broth low sodium
2 cups baby spinach or baby kale rough chopped (optional)

Turn the Instant Pot to Saute mode and heat olive oil. Add carrots, celery, and garlic. Saute for a minute.

Add potatoes, tomato sauce, cannellini beans, pasta, parsley, crushed red pepper, and vegetable broth. Mix well.

Close Instant Pot with pressure valve to sealing. Cook on Pressure Cook/Manual(Hi) for 4 mins followed by Quick Release. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in baby spinach and enjoy hot!

Notes:
The pressure cook time should be half the cook time suggested on the pasta box.

The soup may look watery when you open the pot, give a quick stir and the soup will thicken up as it cools down.

Pressure Cooker Dal Makhani with Brown Rice

1 cup black gram beans or adzuki beans or whole brown lentils
1/3 cup red kidney beans
1 tablespoon oil or ghee
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 medium yellow onion finely diced
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons fresh ginger grated
1 tablespoon of minced garlic
2 cups tomatoes diced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons Kashmiri red chili powder
1/2 tablespoon of cumin powder
1/2 tablespoon coriander powder
2 cups water
1/2 cup light cream
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/4 cup cilantro chopped
1 tablespoon Kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves)

Optional Pot in Pot rice
1 cup brown rice
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt

Rinse and soak black gram beans and red kidney beans in 3 cups of water. Overnight or 6-8 hours. Drain the water after soaking and keep the beans aside.

Set Instant Pot to sauté mode and heat oil. Add cumin seeds to the oil and allow them to sizzle. Add onions and mix well.
Add turmeric, garlic, ginger, tomatoes, salt, red chili powder, cumin, coriander, and beans. Add water and mix well.

The next step is to make a pot in pot brown rice (optional). Rinse and drain the rice. Add rice, water, and salt in a stainless steel container. Put a tall trivet over the beans. Place rice container on the trivet.

Close Instant Pot with pressure valve to sealing. Pressure Cook (Hi) for 30 minutes followed by Natural Pressure Release.

Open Instant Pot and set to sauté mode. Carefully take out the Rice container and the trivet. Stir in cream, add garam masala (optional) and garnish with cilantro. Enjoy hot!

Notes:

I used unsoaked beans, and the kidney beans were a little underdone. And I definitely should have used an extra cup of water and had to add some at the end.

Summer Vegetables in Spiced Yogurt Sauce

3 tablespoons neutral oil or ghee
1 (2-inch) piece ginger, peeled and grated
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne
1 serrano chile, thinly sliced (use less, or remove seeds, for a milder stew)
1 medium onion, diced small
Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
4 cups diced summer squash, such as zucchini, pattypan or romanesco, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
3 cups baby turnips, halved or quartered
2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt
1/2 cup almond flour
2 cups shelled peas or cut green beans
1 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (from 3 ears corn)
5 ounces baby spinach
Roughly chopped cilantro leaves, for garnish
Cooked basmati rice, for serving (optional)

Put oil in a deep, wide skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When it shimmers, add the ginger, garlic, cumin seeds, turmeric, cayenne and the serrano chile. Stir-fry the mixture until it begins to sizzle a bit, about 1 minute.

Add onion to pot, and cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 to 4 minutes. Season well with salt.

Stir in garam masala, squash and turnips, along with 1 cup water. Cover and simmer briskly until vegetables are just done, about 3 minutes.

Add yogurt and almond flour. Stir well to combine. Add peas and corn. Simmer gently, uncovered, until sauce thickens slightly, about 5 minutes. Taste sauce for salt and adjust as needed.

Add the spinach, and let wilt into the mixture. Turn off heat. Sprinkle with cilantro, and serve with rice, if desired.

Notes: Feel free to substitute or add other garden gifts as available. Eggplant, green beans, small potatoes or okra would all be welcome.

Panch Dal

Dal:
1/4 cup channa dal
1/4 cup urad dal
1/4 cup masur dal
1/4 cup toovar dal
1/2 cup mung dal
5 cups wter
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cayenne

Spices:
1 tablespoon vegetable oil or ghee
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
1 teaspoon cumin seed
1 teaspoon garam masala
2 large tomatoes, chopped
1 teaspoon salt or more to taste

Rinse dals.

In large pot, bring water to boil. Add dals, stir, and bring back to boil, then remove from heat, cover, and let sit for 2 hours.

Add turmeric and cayenne to dal and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer until dal is tender (approximately 35 minutes).

10-15 minutes before dal is ready, heat oil or ghee in skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add onion and garlic and fry 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add cumin and garam masala and cook another minute. Add tomatoes and salt and cook about 10 minutes until tomatoes have reduced.

Add onion mixture to dal, stir well, and cook 2-3 minutes to blend flavors. Adjust seasonings to taste.