Simple Brazilian Dinner

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Making a multi-step meal simple with Instant Pot and Oven as your dance partners.

 by Sidonie Maroon, A blue Dot Kitchen

I love my Instant Pot and find new ways to use it all the time. I like to let it cook my main dish while my side dishes are roasting in the oven, and I make a simple salad. Today I made simple black beans in the Instant Pot. Meanwhile, in the oven, I roasted onions and garlic that will go into my finished black beans, baked sweet potatoes, made a quick shredded kale dish that put into a parchment package and steams away for the last 20 minutes of oven time. While everything bubbled and baked, I whipped up a chopped salad. I did everything within the hour; I worked at a relaxed pace and enjoyed the unrushed time in the kitchen working with the beautiful food. I made enough for leftover black beans for breakfast, adding poached eggs, and there’s still plenty for lunches. Three meals for an hour’s main effort, not bad.

If you’re new to this way of cooking, read through the entire set of instructions. Make sure you have all of your ingredients and equipment. Lay everything out so you can find it. Chop and prep whatever you can ahead of time. Imagine the timing and think ahead to what’s next. The more you challenge yourself, the easier it gets to pull off multi stepped meals.   

Here’s how to do it. 

Simple Brazilian Dinner

Feeds two for several meals or four for one meal    

First off, get the beans cooking in the Instant Pot. Once the beans are cooking move on to the oven.

Everyday black beans /Feijão simples   

2 cups dried black beans

Water or stock to cover the beans by 1 inch

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon sea salt

Put the beans, salt, bay leaf and water in the Instant pot. Cover, twist to lock the lid, and turn the valve to seal. Press the Beans/Chili setting. When the timer beeps, allow the pressure to release naturally for at least 20 minutes. Then, turn the valve to vent. Note: if you want more control over the bean’s texture, then use the manual setting and cook for between 25-27 minutes with a natural release for 20 minutes.

When the beans are done, puree a ladleful to thicken the sauce, and add the roasted onion and garlic to the beans. Serve the beans straight away while piping hot.

Second, the oven part, you got this! 

I’ll mix the roasted onions and garlic into the black beans after they’re done.

Preheat oven to 425 F

1) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2) Chop 2 medium onions and mince 6 cloves of garlic. Lay them on the baking sheet.

3) Rub ¼ of a cup of olive oil into them.

4) Put the onions and garlic mix into the oven on the top middle rack and set a timer for 25 minutes.

5) After 25 minutes, stir the onions and continue to roast until they are soft and sweet about 15 minutes more, about 40 minutes total. 

Third up: Sweet Potatoes

1) Line a casserole with parchment paper. Stab two large sweet potatoes with a knife several times and lay them into the casserole.

2) Put the casserole with the sweet potatoes in the oven on the bottom middle rack. Set a timer for 1 hour.  The sweet potatoes are done, when they feel soft.

Fourth, no problem. Tear off one more piece of parchment. Follow the directions for 

Brazilian style shredded greens/ Couve à mineira

1 large bunch of collards and or kale 

2 tablespoons coconut oil or butter

4 cloves garlic, finely minced

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1)   Wash the  kale and cut off the thickest part of the stems. Stack the leaves on top of each other and roll them tightly together. Cut into thin slices, making narrow fine strips of greens (chiffonade).

2) Place the shredded kale and garlic on the parchment, rub the coconut oil or butter into it and season with salt and pepper, wrap the kale up in the parchment like a package by rolling and crimping the paper together or tying it up with baking twine.  Put the kale packet into the oven, in the sweet potato dish, 20 minutes before the sweet potatoes are done.

Number 5 you’re still alive: Make the salad and dressing while everything is cooking. 

Brazilian style chopped salad/ Molho à campanha

1 red pepper, chopped into a small dice

2 carrots grated.

½ cup chopped scallions 

1 cup diced tomato

2 cups finely sliced green cabbage

1 cup finely chopped parsley

4 stalks celery, cut into a small dice

Dressing

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

½ cup avocado oil

2 cloves garlic, crushed 

2 teaspoons coconut sugar

½ teaspoon sea salt or to taste 

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or to taste 

Combine all ingredients. Add the dressing ingredients to a small food processor and blend until smooth. Add the dressing to the salad 15 minutes before serving. I may add fresh, salt and pepper at the table.

Good Job. Put on some Bossa nova and chill.