Sunday, 12 September 2010

Sunday Gravy in a Pressure Cooker

You will see at No Smoke No Pressure that I got a very cool pasta press for my Kitchenaid mixer.  When I first went to use it I was so excited about the pasta, that I forgot about the sauce, so when it came time to get the sauce ready I was short on time, but didn't want to compromise.  The pessure cooker came to the rescue.

Sunday Gravy is a traditional Italian term to describe a sauce that was usually made on Sundays.  It was primarily based with several meats and would simmer all day and fill the house with terrific aromas.  You can find all sorts of Italian-American recipes for this dish.  Don't worry about exactness, use what meats you might have on hand including bracciole and meatballs.  It's more about combining great ingredients and feasting with friends and family.

For my Sunday Gravy I went with on-hand ingredients.  I coarsely chopped some carrots, garlic and onions and sauteed them in the pressure cooker.  I then added my meats: hot Italian sausage, meatballs, cut-up pork spareribs.  I also added 1/2 cup water.  I sealed the pressure cooker, turned to med-high heat and let it come up to pressure - at that time I reduced the heat to med-low (high enough to sustain pressure) and let it cook for 20 minutes. 

After 20 minutes I used the quick-release method to release the steam (where you open the vent - be sure its pointed away from you).  I then added tomatoes and my seasoning.  I re-sealed and brought to pressure againa and cooked an additional 10 minutes.

This sauce was a gorgeous meat based sauce.  Each meat provided its own texture and flavour.  The tomatos and seasoning weren't prevelant, but played a strong supporting role.  Topped on my homemade rigatoni it was a hearty, delicious, comforting meal. 

Sunday Gravy - Pressure Cooker
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, large dice
1 large carrot, large dice
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 lb meatballs
1/2 lb spareribs, chopped up
1/2 lb hot Italian sausage, chopped
14 oz tin of tomatoes
14 oz tin of tomatoes
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tbsp dried basil
4 leaves fresh basil (if available) plus some for garnish
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper

Heat oil in the pressure cooker and saute the onions, carrots and garlic for about 2-3 minutes until softened.  Add all the meats at once along with water.  Secure the lid and turn heat to medium-high.  Once it meets pressure, reduce heat to medium-low and cook at pressue for 20 minutes.  When ready, use the quick release method (release steam away from you).

Add the remaining ingredients to the pot.  Resecure the lid and bring back to pressure and cook for 20 minutes.  Use the quick release method again and serve. 

Garnish with chopped fresh basil and grated parmesan.


  1. Yum! It looks delicious and it's just how my mother-in-law does it in Italy!



  2. Trying today, house smells so good!!