Hi there!

I’m slowly working towards some simplicity within the home, but hey! It’s a lot of hard work!

I love having a go at growing my own veges and always use herbs fresh from my garden. I try to plant from seed whenever I can and have learnt to save and share my own seed for the following year. I make Award Winning preserves and pickles; and my husband brews Award Winning boutique beers as well. I love to stockpile and try to limit quick trips to the shops. I dabble in bread making and enjoy making my own stocks too.

I enjoy feeding my family good hearty meals, nothing like those tiny restaurant stacks you have to look for on the plate. My husband maintains our vehicles and machinery and we both enjoy fabricating on a small scale mostly relying on metal & timber recyclers for any materials needed.

While I don’t always have time to reply to comments, I love reading them. I hope you enjoy your stay and I hope you learn something new because I love sharing what I learn, and I'm always looking for another new skill myself.


Sunday, June 24, 2012

30 Minute Stock

Yep, you read it right!
I've been experimenting with my Pressure Cooker after rescuing it from the top of a cupboard in my kitchen. It's been there since I bought it, remembering the complete disaster  I had with a find at an op-shop when I was first married. This attempt involved complete bowing of the bottom of the pot. No instructions, no internet...........It's taken me 20 years to give them another go.

But this time I would be prepared...boasting to hubby on the phone that I would be using it that night; I'd let him know the outcome the following morning when we talked again. Turns out I wasn't that prepared after all...........The meal would need to be cooked the following evening because......
When you first buy a Pressure Cooker, you need to season the pot before you cook in it.
Don't forget to take time to read all the instructions that came with the cooker.

To season your new Pressure Cooker....
Season the rim of the pot with a little cooking oil. This lubricates the lid and the pot making it easier to remove the lid.
Fill the Pressure Cooker to half way with cold water.
Place the lid on according to the instructions
Heat until steam releases, then turn the heat down and allow to 'season' for another 20 minutes.
Then turn the heat off and leave to stand until cold. Do not remove the lid until the whole unit is cold.

Meal number one....Beef Stew
*Huge success with minimal fuss.
*25 minutes under pressure
*You can see how the meat just falls apart.
Now onto some much needed STOCK.
I was pleased to discover that our local Meat Market had re-opened...so I went to check it out.
I bought home two big bags of Beef Bones $4 each....and two big bags of Chicken Carcasses $2 each.
Baking all the bones in the oven, gives you a deeper, richer flavour....
Beef Bones
Ready for the oven
Using half the baked beef bones, I went on to add other usual ingredients that I put in a stock....
The other half of the baked beef bones are labelled and in the freezer for another stock day.

Add 2 onions, 2 carrots, 2 sticks of celery, fresh herbs and mixed spices
Cover with 3 litres of water. Make sure your pot is never more than two-thirds full for stock.

Put the lid on following the instructions....then once the steam starts to come out of the relief valve....turn the heat down low and allow to cook for a further 30 minutes. Allow to cool or release the steam as per instructions and reveal a lovely stock, ready to strain.

Beef Stock in a Pressure Cooker
While the oven was on I also baked the Chicken Carcasses....
I'll be making Chicken Stock using half of these baked chicken bones today....and the other half will go in the freezer for when I want to make some more.
Baked Chicken Bones
 Do you make stock? 
Do you use a pressure cooker? 
What do you cook in your pressure cooker?


  1. A pressure cooker is on my list to try but at present the slow cooker is my friend - put it on and forget it for the day :)

    viv in nz

  2. i have a pressure cooker brand spanking new still in the box i am slightly scared of it and waiting for ideas to pop into nmy head for what i can cook in it.. i will remeber to season it now you have said you have to

  3. Oh yes... Narelle, I use my pressure cookers nearly every single day. I make stock in mine all the time, and of course, soups, stews, rice and rice pudding, mashed potatoes, lentils, roasts, risotto, etc... the sky is the limit!

    I pressure can veggies, and I also process my fruits, etc in it. LOVE mine and they would be one of the last things I'd give up.

  4. LOVE my pressure cooker!!! I have one that has a timer that comes on when pressure is reached, along with a ringtone...cannot get over how much I use it now and what I get to cook in it and yes, rice is a favourite, 6 minutes all up and perfect rice. There is a great on-line site called Hip Pressure cooking which has fantastic recipes including eggs, pasta, polenta etc and she is in the process of reviewing recipe books.

  5. I do have a pressure cooker that is about 30 years old but is only used as a large saucepan. I have always been a little worried about using it as a pressure cooker - worried that it might explode. Perhaps I should give it another go! I do like to make my own stock and came across a great tip from Christine at Slow Living Essentials. Christine keeps all of her off cuts of veges that she uses in the freezer and uses them when it's time to make stock.

  6. Hi Narelle. I use my pressure cooker and pressure canner quite a bit. Very handy for stocks, soups, stews and beans.

  7. I just found your blog and became a follower (: Can't wait to come back for more posts! We LOVE making stock, put I've never used a pressure cooker...it might be time to invest in one (:


  8. You are doing a fabulous job keep it up and i am waiting for latest updates from you,,,,and

    your blog is provides me alot of worthwile information about this topic and stuff like


  9. I use my slow cooker at least four times a week but lately with the weather here running 106 I have been using it every day. I am sad to say I only think about my pressure cooker when its time to can.

  10. Things I have use my pressure cooker for:
    Nuking the stock juices out of meaty bones and if I dont have time to make a soup,just freeze the cooled off stock(after removing surface fat layer from cold stock) to use as base for soups in the future. Either freeze-in the bits of soft meat pulled off the bones or use them for something else.
    After soaking dry beans/chickpeas/peas overnight, I use the pressure cooker to cook them to arrive more quickly at a squishy result suitable for the blender (smooth pea soup, hummus etc)
    I use it for Salt beef. Shortens cooking time, lovely soft meat. Lift the cooked meat out and switch the heat on again while you boil the dumplings in the lovely hot liquid with lid off.
    I never nuke veges in the pressure cooker....except carrots or potatoes. More tender veg = Add them at the end of heavier cooking of meat/chicken and just repressurize for a very very short time.

  11. I am one of the visitors of your site. I hope you will show more such material or data to put in our use.

  12. Love the idea of having something useful for old chicken frames...

  13. Hi,
    I really like my pressure cooker! I use it to make chicken and beef stock, cook rice (4 minutes!), beans, casseroles, risotto...
    I first was a bit scared of the pressure cooker, too, and read a book: Juanita Philips (the ABC news reader lady)"How a pressure cooker saved my life". It's a good book and has some easy but really good pressure cooker recipes in it!

  14. Wow, deliciously looking. This is perfect for dinner and lunch. Thanks for sharing this tasty recipe.


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