Published January 1, 2013.
One of the keys to pressure-cooker success is using enough moisture to cook the food through and keep the pan from scorching but also to provide good flavor that isn’t too diluted. We decided an Asian-style sauce made with hoisin, soy sauce, and sherry would do a good job of accomplishing both goals for our boneless beef short ribs. After 30 minutes under pressure, the meat was cooked through and had released its juices to create an intensely flavored sauce. It was more sauce than we would have gotten using a conventional stovetop or oven method since there was no evaporation from the pot, but we didn’t mind having extra sauce on hand—mixed with some scallion greens and cilantro, it made an excellent match for a big bowl of steamed white rice.
1. BUILD FLAVOR: Cook oil, garlic, and ginger in pressure-cooker pot over medium-high heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in hoisin sauce, soy sauce, sherry, scallion whites, and cayenne, then add beef.
2. HIGH PRESSURE FOR 35 MINUTES: Lock pressure-cooker lid in place and bring to high pressure over medium-high heat. As soon as pot reaches high pressure, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 35 minutes, adjusting heat as needed to maintain high pressure.
3. NATURALLY RELEASE PRESSURE: Remove pot from heat and allow pressure to release naturally for 15 minutes. Quick release any remaining pressure, then carefully remove lid, allowing steam to escape away from you.
4. BEFORE SERVING: Transfer short ribs to platter, tent loosely with aluminum foil, and let rest while finishing sauce. Strain sauce into fat separator, let sit 5 minutes, then pour defatted sauce into small bowl. Stir scallion greens and cilantro leaves into sauce and serve with ribs.
Peeling and Smashing Ginger
We’ve found using a spoon to be an easy way to peel a knobby piece of ginger because you can easily maneuver around bumps. Adding a smashed piece of ginger at the beginning of cooking allows it to release its flavor, and the ginger is then easy to remove before serving.
1. Hold 2-inch piece of ginger firmly against cutting board and use edge of dinner spoon to scrape away skin.
2. Slice peeled ginger crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick coins, then use corner of heavy pan (or mallet) to gently smash ginger.
Can I substitute bone-in short ribs?
Yes, substitute 6 (12-ounce) bone-in english-style beef short ribs, well trimmed, for the boneless ribs. Add 3/4 cup of water to the pot with the beef in step 1 and increase the pressurized cooking time to 1 1/2 hours. After defatting the sauce in step 4, simmer the sauce as needed to thicken before serving.
What if my short ribs don’t seem tender after removing the lid?
If your short ribs don’t look quite done after the 35-minute pressurized cooking time, gently simmer them in the sauce until they are done. If the sauce thickens too much, add water as needed.
Do I need to alter the recipe for a 6-quart electric pressure cooker?
Yes, turn the cooker off immediately after the pressurized cooking time and let the pressure release naturally for 15 minutes; do not let the cooker switch to the warm setting.