Pressure Cooker Corned Beef

Corned Beef
Normally I would do my yearly Corned Beef on the Big Green Egg, but I have been rebuilding my kitchen and the Instant Pot is one of one of my cool new toysols. It’s a slow cooker/dutch oven/rice maker/pressure cooker hybrid that seemed to be perfect for a cooking a brisket.

Instant Pot
I know a lot of folks think a pressure cooker is just an accident waiting to happen, but the Instant Pot has bunch of safety interlocks that pretty much prevent you from doing anything dangerous with it. You can’t even pressurize it until it checks to make sure the lid is fully locked. Besides, it has Bluetooth connectivity. How cool is that?

3 pound flat cut corned beef brisket with seasoning packet
4 medium red potatoes, quartered
3 large carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
3 medium parsnips, sliced into 1/2-inch coins


Rinse the corned beef under cold water to remove excess salt and goo.
Put a rack in the pressure cooking pot and arrange the corned beef on top of that. Sprinkle with seasoning packet and then add just enough water to almost cover the brisket.

Lock the lid in place and set to “Meat/Stew” under high pressure for 50 minutes. Once finished, allow it to depressurize naturally (about 15 minutes) while you chop up the veggies.

Remove the rack and brisket from the pressure cooking to a cutting board. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest until ready to serve.

Add the potatoes, carrots and parsnips to the broth in the pressure cooking pot. Lock the lid in place and set to “Soup” setting for 5 minutes. When beep sounds, turn off pressure cooker and do a quick pressure release.

Leave the lid on while you slice the corned beef into thin slices against the grain. Arrange slices on a platter and surround with veggies.

The Verdict: ★★★★★
While I missed the smokey flavor of the grill, it’s hard to argue with meltingly tender brisket in under an hour. The seasoning was dead on – warm and slightly exotic  and a great match for the salty beefiness of the meat.

Next year I’m thinking of trying smoking and pressure cooking, a la Montreal Smoked Meat. Can’t wait.

Ribs and Wings

Wings and Ribs

I had no use for Valentine’s Day this year, so I made up a batch of man food to drown my sorrows with.

Country-Style Ribs
1 1/2 pounds boneless country-style ribs
Rub of your choice (Dizzy Pig Dizzy Dust here)
Barbecue sauce

Season the ribs heavily on all sides with rub. Cover and stash in the fridge until the grill is ready.

Set your grill up for a raised direct cook at 250°F. On the Big Green Egg I didn’t use a plate setter to diffuse the heat, but did use an extender to raise the cooking grid up about 4 inches further from the heat.

Add your smoking wood (apple, in this case) to the grill and when the grill reaches 250°F and the smoke has turned blue, arrange the ribs on the cooking grate. Close the lid and let them cook, flipping every hour, until they reach 160°F internal (about 3 hours).

When the ribs hit 160°F internal, move them off to a flame-proof pan (I used a 9×13 roasting pan) and cover with a bout a cup of sauce. Turn ribs to coat and move the pan full of ribs back to the grill. Close the lid and let cook for an hour.

Check the ribs for doneness – they should be around 190°F internal and the meat should fall apart when you poke at it with a fork. Seal the pan with a sheet of aluminum foil and move off to an oven set on the lowest setting while you cook the wings.

Greek-ish Hot Wings
1 1/2 pounds chicken wings
Penzey’s Greek Seasoning
1/2 cup Frank’s hot sauce

Season wings with a good dusting of Greek seasoning and stash in the fridge on a cooling rack in a cookie sheet or jelly roll pan while you get the grill up to 350°F.

On the Big Green Egg I used the same raised direct setup I used for the ribs. But just opened the vents a bit to get the heat up.

When the grill is ready, put the wings on the grate skin side up and cook undisturbed for 20 minutes. Flip and cook for another 20 minutes. Flip back skin side up and cook another 20 minutes until golden and crispy.

Baste the wings on both sides with the sauce. Let them cook for another 10 minutes, then baste again before serving.

The Ribs Verdict: ★★★★☆
Tasty hunks of meat, but they still were a little dry. I think my technique is sound, but the cut of meat might be too lean with not enough connective tissue to break down and get juicy.

The Wings Verdict: ★★★★★
Just straight up Frank’s and some Greek seasoning – nothing fancy but OMG they were good. The unadulterated Frank’s packs a little more heat than most Buffalo sauces I’ve made and that heat makes a big difference.

Music to grill by:

Recommended after dinner viewing:

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