This Beef Short Rib Pot Roast is a hearty Northeastern Brazilian style stew, made in an instant pot with vegetables. Perfect for an easy family meal, either served over rice or along with your favorite side dish.
If you are a fan of traditional American pot roast, you will go crazy for this Instant Pot Beef Short Rib Pot Roast — which, by the way, cooks much quicker than the classic pot roast. Don’t believe me? Check it out!
Traditional American Pot Roast is a stew made using a roast-sized, tough cut of beef such as chuck roast, which is browned and then slow cooked in a dutch-oven pan or slow cooker until tender, along with various vegetables (potatoes, carrots, and onions). Also known as Yankee pot roast, it is a variation of the French boeuf à la mode.
In contrast, our Beef Short Rib Pot Roast is prepared with beef short ribs browned and then cooked in an instant pot with a larger assortment of vegetables such as corn on the cob, potatoes, carrots, onions, and okra. Like its Portuguese cousin, cozido a Portuguesa, the dish has numerous regional variations throughout Brazil — from the cut of meat used to the variety of vegetables, and in some instances even incorporation of plantains. The version that I have for you today comes from my home state, Pernambuco, on the northeastern coast.
Down there, it is common to also have maxixe (maroon cucumber or West Indian gherkin) in the mix of vegetables, which we omit because it is not easily available in Texas. Some even add plantains, which we felt unnecessary for our recpie because American corn is typically quite sweet, in contrast to the most common type of corn consumed in Brazil.
The modification is minimal. Back in Pernambuco the dish is served accompanied by white rice and pirão (a creamy-polenta like dish made from pot roast broth and coarse manioc flour). But you can certainly serve it all by itself or along with your favorite side dish such as pasta, couscous, quinoa, mashed potatoes, etc.
The spices and herbs used in our Beef Short Rib Pot Roast also differs from the American version. Besides salt and pepper, we used ground cumin and annatto/achiote (both available in any local supermarket in the Latin aisle, since both are also commonly used in Mexican cuisine).
If you don’t have an instant pot or pressure cooker, no worries. You can make this in a dutch-oven pan. which will probably take a little longer to cook compared to an instant pot.
I made this Beef Short Rib Pot Roast for the first time and my family fell in love with it. I practically transported myself back to Brazil, along with my family, who have never tried the dish before down there. To make the experience more authentic, I served it with white rice and of course, pirão. The roast received unanimous approval, but I can’t say the same about pirão. 🙂 While I had to contain myself to leave enough pirão for the rest of the family, my husband and eldest child were not crazy about it– mostly on account of its gooey texture. I guess this was somewhat to be expected, since they both are not really fans of creamy polenta or gravy.
Fortunately, my little one (I mean, my ten-year-old) saved me from disappointment. She ate it all — with a huge smile on her face. I was so proud of her adventurous palate — just like her mom’s. 😉
If you would like to try pirão, bring about 2 cups of the pot roast broth to a boil in a saucepan, reduce heat to medium, and then add 1 to 1 1/2 cups of coarse manioc flour (farinha de mandioca) in a steady stream, stirring constantly until it has the consistency of cooked creamy polenta and no lumps are found. You can adjust the seasoning (salt and pepper) if necessary.
Well, enjoy a gastronomic trip to my beautiful and delicious state of Pernambuco through our hearty Beef Short Rib Pot Roast!
Até mais! (See you soon)
TO PIN & ENJOY!