I have been learning how to use our InstantPot with traditional recipes and this was a slam dunk! Then again, Granny's BBQ Ribs are ALWAYS a winner. Even the liquid did not go to waste as I made Jasmine rice with it as a side dish.
Great-Grandma Ruth taught me how to make these ribs when I was in high school and it is one of our all time favorites (next to her Spaghetti Sauce recipe that needs a picture worthy of the taste!) I tweaked the recipe for the InstantPot (electric programmable pressure cooker) and it worked perfectly in MUCH less time! Adjust the quantities to suit your budget and how many you plan to feed - I would plan for 1 lb of ribs per person.
Granny's BBQ Ribs
3 lb Babyback or spare ribs (I used Auburn Meadow Farm pasture-raised pork)
Salt & pepper
Avocado oil (or lard) to brown the ribs
1 cup ketchup (approx)
1/4 cup brown sugar, maple syrup or honey (approx)
2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce (approx)
Remove the membrane from the back of the ribs and cut into pieces of 3 ribs or so that it will fit in the base of the pot. Sprinkle both sides with salt & pepper. I most always use Kosher salt for cooking so it does not interfere with he flavor.
Set the InstantPot to "Sauté" and add about 1 or 2 tablespoons of oil or lard (enough to barely coat the pan). When hot, brown sections of the ribs on both sides (I added just enough to cover the bottom and moved them to a plate when brown.) When all sections have been browned, add 1 cup of water to hot pot and scrape the "fond" or bits from the bottom. Turn off the pot and add the rack to the bottom.
Mix the BBQ sauce in a mixing bowl - I use a fork to break up the sugar. The cool thing about this sauce is YOU decide when it is sweet or tangy or tomatoey enough! It is made to taste. Ketchup is the base, the sweet from the brown sugar and the tang from the Worcestershire sauce. If you want it spicier, add more Worcestershire. Sweeter = more sugar. If you overdo the sweet or tangy, add more ketchup. Just go slow the first time and taste as you go. This sauce can be used for ham BBQ, BBQ beef, BBQ on burgers, etc.
Coat the ribs with BBQ sauce (I used about 1/2 of it) and stack loosely on the rack in the pot - kinda like a tee-pee. Set the pot to high for 30 minutes. I did a quick release at the end.
Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees while the ribs are cooking. Remove the ribs to a baking dish or cookie sheet and coat both sides with the BBQ sauce again. Spread them out some so that the BBQ sauce will caramelize some while baking. Bake until caramelized but not getting too brown - it was about 15-20 mins in our convection oven (you could also use the broiler).
I measured the liquid in the bottom of the pot after the ribs came out and added rice to and little water to match.
You can make the ribs in a covered roaster or crockpot but it takes much longer to bake them.
2 quarts (8 cups) of stock or broth made with Old Time Heritage Chicken. I made mine from the leftover bones of a whole chicken I cooked in the crockpot 6-8 hours for a meal the evening before. I put the bones back into the crock pot after dinner, added enough water to cover (approx 8-10 cups), cooked on low overnight and strained the bones out in the morning. You can cook the bones for 24-48 hours in the crockpot on low and add a little apple cider vinegar, if you want. This can also be simmered on the stove on low as well.
2 medium Zucchini cut up (I used yellow & green for color)
1 quart beans snapped in 1-2" pieces (green, yellow and purple)
5 leaves of Kale chopped coarsely (Lacinato Kale for color)
5 leaves of Swiss Chard chopped coarsely
1 onion chopped coarsely
4 medium carrots
4 ears of corn - (fresh or left over) kernels chopped off
1 good handful (1 cup) chopped parsley
1 pint of Okra roughly sliced
6 tomatoes coarsely chopped
1 small head of cabbage coarsely sliced
1 bay leaf (I added it to the bones while they cooked)
Salt to taste (a teaspoon or so would be by guess but I add it after the veggies cook into the soup and add their flavor!).
I cooked mine for 8 hours on low in the crock pot but you can bring to a boil and simmer on the stove until the veggies are tender.
Cooking Tips:Tip 1: My goal is to combine the various colors, textures & flavors so use what is available at your local farmer's market or your freezer.
Tip 2: Add veggies until the broth/stock is full of veggies - they will cook down. There is no hard and fast rule on how much to add. Be creative and enjoy cooking!
Tip 3: I did not add potatoes or noodles of any sort as I will freeze the leftovers for a quick meal at a later date! Potatoes and pasta do not freeze well for me in soup!
Tip 4: You can use Beef, Pork, Turkey or Chicken broth/stock for the base. You will find that the Old Fashioned Heritage Chicken from Old Time Farm has much more flavor that the commercial type store bought chicken!
This is comfort food at its best! Cream of Chicken Soup made with our very own Old Time heritage Chantecler chicken and kniffles (German egg dumplings) made with our Old Time Chantecler eggs.
Recipe for Cream of Chicken Soup
Recipe for Kniffles (full disclosure: not the recipe I used - that one came from my Great Grandma and is done by texture and does not use water or milk. The water or milk will allow you to make the finer spaetzle. The recipe I use is more similar to the egg noodle recipe above but has more egg to make a softer, more gooey dough).
This is some YUMMY Broccoli Cheese Soup I made with broth from our very own Chantecler chicken along with onions, garlic & broccoli purchased from the local Farmer's Markets we attend and cream-line milk in a glass bottle from the Meadville Market House.
Here is the Recipe for the Cream of Broccoli Soup and the broth/stock instructions are here.
You are not limited to using chicken stock or broth. Make a stock from the leftover cut ends/trimmings of your veggies or even from a ham bone.
Here is my favorite Recipe for Chicken Noodle Soup from Southern Living Cookbook ! And here is a Recipe for Homemade Egg Noodles like my Great Grandma Ruth taught me to make!
Homemade noodles from our farm fresh eggs takes the recipe over the top but, in a pinch, I would suggest using a Kluski type noodle instead of the fine noodle in the Chicken Soup recipe!
Any cut of our Old Time Chicken or Turkey will work for this soup or start with Old Time Bone Broth and add the veggies and noodles.
Bone stock/broth is the base for many of the soup recipes I make. I am not faithful to one recipe or style to make the stock. Sometimes I used roasted bones, sometimes smoked bones and sometimes fresh bones, sometimes I use whole chickens as well. The main ingredients are heritage chicken (bones, carcass, skin and even feet of one chicken), water to cover bones and a little salt to taste (or not as you like). You can add herbs and/or vegetables as well. I like to use my crock pot and let it cook on low for a minimum of 12 hours and a maximum of 48 hours. Strain the bones from the stock when warm and refrigerate or freeze when cool.
Trivia tidbit ... "Bone Broth" should technically be called "Bone Stock". Broth = made from meat or meaty bones and "stock" = made from bones. You can find a good explanation here.
I LOVE fried round steak and have my whole life! It is one of those simple, old-fashioned, hardy, delicious country comfort foods that makes me feel good all over! Ever hear of country fried steak or chicken fried steak? This is their Kwik-n-EZ Kiss'n cousin. Guess what? I have been bringing this culinary gem to the markets and not making alot of noise about it.
The key is to use Old Time 100% Grass-fed round steak that has been mechanically tenderized (aka cube steak), coat it with flour and fry it in Old Time 100% Grass-fed tallow, butter or your favorite cooking oil until browned. Make some pan gravy to put over baked, fried, boiled or mashed potatoes, rice or quinoa with some beans or corn on the side and dinner is served!
Cut the Old Time 100% Grass-fed tenderized round steak into portion size pieces (about the size of an I-phone 7 in our house). Put 1/4 to 1/2 cup of flour in a baggie or bowl and add the round steak one piece at a time and coat with the flour. I added about 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp garlic powder to the flour (you can add your seasoning of choice). Get your pan nice and hot and add the tallow, butter or oil and then the pieces of steak. When you see the liquid start to pool on the top of the meat and the sides of the meat start to look lighter in color, it is time to flip it. Cook until browned or to the desired temperature on a meat thermometer.
To make a pan gravy from the drippings, add 2 tablespoons of butter or tallow to the pan over medium heat. When the fat is melted, add 2 tablespoons of the left over seasoned flour and cook flour until slightly browned (a few minutes or so). Get ready with a whisk and slowly add about 1 1/2 cups of beef broth, water or milk while whisking. The more you whisk and are consistent in adding your liquid, the least amount of lumps you are likely to get. If the gravy is too thick, you can add a little more liquid, if too thin, let it reduce down by simmering a little bit.
It does not get much better than this for me.
This Kwik-n-EZ one-pot recipe is inspired a Greek-Style Stuffed Pepper recipe shared by my sister-in-law (and master cooker extraordinaire), Andrea, I do not have time to mess with the stuffing, baking & waiting an hour for it to be done as we need to get the meal on the table to move onto the next project on the farm - I am sure your busy family is the same.
Greek Unstuffed Pepper
1 lb Old Time 100% Grass-fed Ground Beef
2 tbsp Old Time 100% Grass-fed Beef Tallow or oil of choice (more if needed when sautéing veggies)
1 small onion chopped
3 bell peppers sliced or rough chopped
1 gallon baggie of spinach - rough chopped (or use chopped kale or swiss chard. I used foraged lambs quarters)
1 medium zucchini - shredded or rough chopped
2 large tomatoes rough chopped or 1 pint of cherry tomatoes cut in half
1 - 14 oz (approx) can stewed or canned tomatoes (I used a jar of Who Cooks for You Farm "tomato soup". You could also use 2 more fresh tomatoes but may need to add some water,)
2 cups of cooked rice (**optional)
1/2 tsp dried oregano (1 1/2 tsp fresh)
1/2 tsp kosher or sea salt or to taste
a sprinkle of black pepper to taste
Feta cheese (I used Goat Rodeo Chickabiddy)
Brown & crumble the ground beef in the tallow (or oil). Add the onion and pepper chunks and cook until almost soft. Add spinach & zucchini cook slightly (if using Kale, cook to soften a bit before adding other ingredients). Add rice (optional) tomatoes, canned tomatoes, oregano, salt & pepper. Bring to a simmer and cover. Simmer for about 15 mins to allow the flavors to meld together.
Serve "as is" and top with a sprinkle of feta cheese or serve over baked or mashed potato or quinoa.
Meals on the farm need to be "in-season", nutritious, hearty, quick & easy without a long list of exotic ingredients. Well raised meats and well grown, in-season, local foods do not need the "help" of exotic ingredients to taste good nor do they need elaborate prep to be nutritious "good eats"!
We generally do not eat dinner until well after dark and, by then, the last thing I want to do is to cook a multi-step meal with alot of prep and pans. We are too far out in the boondocks to get pizza delivered (good thing!) and so old-fashioned country cooking and simple one pot meals, like the "Unstuffed Cabbage Roll", are the standbys I fall back on. I have a few more to share as well.
Right now, we have multiple freezers recently stocked with beef and will need to make room for more beeves that need to be harvested as well as chickens and pork - so beef has been our go-to protein.
I made the version above with Who Cooks For You canned heirloom tomatoes, onion and cabbage. I love their tomato sauce in it as well!
Unstuffed Cabbage Roll
1 pound of Old Time ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 head of cabbage, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes or 1 lb of tomatoes chopped
1 (8 oz) tomato sauce
salt & pepper to taste (about 1 tsp of salt & 1/2 tsp of pepper)
1 cup rice (optional)
Heat large skillet (best if it has a lid) & cook ground beef & onion until beef is brown & crumbly. Add garlic, cabbage, tomatoes, tomato sauce, salt & pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until cabbage is tender (about 20-30 mins).
You can serve over rice or potatoes or alone. I make another version where I add rice.
Let me know if you have a stuffed cabbage roll recipe or favorite quick & easy one pot recipe using Old Time meats. I have another recipe for cabbage rolls that includes cream in the sauce.
Bummer on the lack of pictures again - the strata I had at market on Saturday was a real beauty!
Strata is one of those recipes that I use to clean out the refrigerator and use old bread. It is also a go-to recipe when eggs are plentiful in the spring. I make so many variations of it and pretty much tweak it to what I have on hand and what kinda "goes together". I used our Old Time Heritage Turkey Eggs which are about 1-1/2 eggs per each chicken egg called for in a recipe.
The strata I had at market on Saturday was made with Who Cooks For You Farm's amazing pork sausage, a bag of Sturges Orchard's baby kale, garlic scapes from Normand Homestead (at the Grove City market), and rustic Italian bread from Mediterra Bakehouse. I used a little Parmesan cheese on the top grated by our local market, but Goat Rodeo's stampede would have taken this strata from amazing to incredible!
Remember to use good quality ingredients and the results will reward you!
Sausage, Kale & Garlic Scape Strata
Add the kale & garlic scapes and a little sprinkle of salt. I added a little avocado oil because the sausage was lean but you could add olive or other cooking oil if needed to sauté the kale. I also add a little water, cover the skillet & turned the heat down to a simmer to soften the kale.
While kale is cooking, grease a 13x9 pan, cut the bread into 1 inch cubes and put the cubes in the baking dish - it should come up about 1/2 way in the baking dish and cover the bottom.
Add the kale, scapes and sausage mix to the bread and try to distribute it evenly.
Whisk the eggs and milk together with a sprinkle of salt and pour over the bread, sausage, scapes & kale (if the egg milk mixture does not coat the bread, you can mix 1 egg to 1/2 cup milk to add more moisture). Let stand for about 10 minutes for the egg mixture to soak into the bread.
Sprinkle with cheese and bake in a 350 degree pre-heated oven for about 30 minutes or until browned and a knife inserted into the center comes out "clean".
For a meatless mix, you can change out the sausage for mushrooms.
You can exchange the kale for nettles, spinach or chard (I have even used broccoli). You can change out the meats to bacon, smoked meats, smoked sausage, ground beef, ground turkey, hot dogs, what ever you have and would go together in a meal with the bread and veggie.
Let me know if you have any questions and enjoy!
Old Time Farm