Instant Pot: Oxtail Stew

It's practically the end of the year and the winter temps have come. Despite the below freezing conditions, the weather allows me to enjoy some comforting dishes to stay warm. I recently made this Oxtail Stew that is so rich, meaty and flavorful with a tomato based sauce and studded with peas and pearl onions. Served atop a bed of rice, this is a stick to your ribs, hearty meal on a chilly day...

For those that are not familiar with oxtails, this is a cut of beef from the tail end. It's a cut that is especially great for slow cooking, pressure cooking and/or braising until it falls off the bone. We loved this dish - and all things made with oxtail. If you prefer, you can substitute the oxtail with beef stew meat for something similar... but it won't give off the same silky rich texture that oxtails do.

Oxtail Stew
recipe adapted from Sunny Anderson

4 pounds oxtails
2 large Vidalia onions, chopped
3 scallions, chopped
4 garlic cloves, smashed
1 bunch fresh thyme
2 tablespoons red pepper flakes
4 teaspoons hot paprika
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons hot sauce
6 cups low-sodium beef broth
4 teaspoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons salt
1 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 cup frozen cooked pearl onions

In your Instant Pot:

In the IP insert, add oxtails, onions, scallions, garlic, thyme, red pepper, paprika, bay leaf, and hot sauce and marinate at least 4 hours or overnight in the refrigerator to fully season the oxtails.

Plug in the IP with insert set in place.

Add 6 cups of beef broth, tomato paste and salt.

Secure the lid of the IP and ensure the valve is set to SEALING.

Press MANUAL and adjust the time to 90 minutes on HIGH pressure.

The display will reflect ON while the IP comes to pressure. Allow a few minutes for your IP to come to pressure.

Once at pressure, the display will reflect 90 (the number of minutes you initially set) and will begin to countdown to 0 minutes.

When the IP beeps after pressure cooking for 90 minutes, allow your IP to naturally release pressure completely. While naturally releasing pressure (also known as NPR or NR), the display will reflect numbers counting up from 1. The numbers indicate how many minutes the IP has stopped cooking since it beeped (or how many minutes it has been naturally releasing pressure).  No need to touch your IP while it naturally releases pressure. The pin at the top of your IP will drop when all pressure has been released and it's safe to open.

Open up your IP when the pin has dropped (allow a several minutes for this to happen).

Skim any visible fat off top. Season with 2 tablespoons salt, add the peas and pearl onions; Stir to warm through.

To serve, you can serve on the bone or remove oxtail from the bone - as it should naturally fall off from the pressure cooking. Serve over rice.