Thursday, May 28, 2009

Madis, Pressure Cooker, Summer

Kalena got a calf a couple years ago that he named Madis after a Jewish singer, Madis Yahu. Madis' mother was not able to care for him so he came to us and Kaipo bottle fed him 2x a day for weeks. Morning and night. She was so good at it. You'll never know how hard it is until you do it yourself. Plus we had Mary (another calf) at the same time and feeding one at a time was almost impossible. Imagine twins. Hungry twins. Weighing a couple hundred pounds each. Madis was slaughtered not too long ago (to prepare for Kanoa's pa'ina) and our freezer is FULL!
Last year my mom gave me a pressure cooker. Now you know I love my crockpot. Put a meal in there and just let it cook all day while you are at work. My mom did it and now I do it. But a pressure cooker is a kitchen appliance I never grew up with. And the only thing I ever remember hearing about a pressure cooker is how one blew up in the dining hall kitchen at school and a certain kitchen utility worker didn't come to work for weeks after that. So I was a bit leery. But Kalena said he does a pressure cooker stew in 20 minutes so I thought, what the heck!
I browned up the stew meat (w/ salt and pepper) in about 2 tablespoons oil, took it out, put in and little more oil and the chopped onions (cut large), and stirred a bit. But once I noticed the brown left on the bottom from the meat started to burn I took it off the burner and added one small can of tomato paste, 2 cups of chicken broth, and 3 tablespoons shoyu and stirred. Then I added all the vegetables (potatoes, celery and carrots) and about 1 tablespoon of minute tapioca (though I suppose this could be skipped. I read that this is a good way to thicken up a gravy/soup so I wanted to try it. I think I'll go ahead and add a little more next time). I stirred it all around, put the top on the pressure cooker and returned it to the burner on medium until it started to spew steam. I took that as my sign to turn it to low and let it go for 20 minutes.
Stew came out PERFECT! Yum. And knowing that the meat was hormone and antibiotic free and that it came from a steer that lived a VERY happy life in Pa'auilo and Honomu made it even more enjoyable (just got through reading Omnivore's Dilemma). I know, some people are squeamish about eating animals they've raised but it has never bothered me. In fact I felt honored. Kind of native. Earth friendly. Carnivorous.
I think everyone enjoyed it. Kim chee on the top helped to cool it down if you can believe that. Kika says to please give time for the food in the pressure cooker to cool before eating, lest a family member get "hotburn" a new funny word in our home, thank you Shelbie, referring to the HEAT of food going down down down.
I'm officially on summer vacation so hopefully posts will be more frequent.


S L O W   F O O D    F R I D A Y Wow. Has it been that long? Don't think I fell off the face of the earth due to my increased weig...