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Instant Pot

Pepper-Lemon Beef and Spinach Stew

4 Servings

FAST: 1¼ hours
Slow: 7½ to 8½ hours

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This rich, yet brightly flavored stew is our Instant Pot take on a recipe from “The Cooking of the Eastern Mediterranean” by Paula Wolfert. It’s unusual in that at the end of cooking, the braising liquid is lightly thickened with egg yolks, which gives the broth a velvety richness. Baby spinach is added after the yolks, just before serving, so a good time to chop it is while the pressure releases (if pressure-cooked) or during the last few minutes of simmering (if slow-cooked). Wolfert’s stew is Turkish in origin and is seasoned with Aleppo pepper, a variety of mildly spicy red pepper flake with hints of cumin that comes from that region; if not available, a combination of sweet paprika and cayenne works nicely. Serve with rice or warmed flatbread.




Don’t add the hot cooking liquid too quickly to the egg yolks or they will scramble. Whisking the yolks constantly while gradually pouring in the liquid will prevent curdling. This step of tempering the yolks ensures they won’t form curds when added to the hot liquid in the pot.

FAST: 1¼ hours
Slow: 7½ to 8½ hours


  • 2

    tablespoons salted butter

  • 1

    medium yellow onion, chopped


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Nina F.
January 21, 2023
I love this
I’ve made this recipe twice now- so easy and delicious- and so different from stews I’ve tasted before. It’s definitely something I will make again.
Martha K.

Thank you Milk Street for sharing another unique recipe and introducing
Paula Wolfert and a new recipe book.

Excellent recipe***** something different/easy and perfect for Sunday dinner.
I made mine in 2 hours flat, using the convection oven on 280, increasing water
to 3/4 cup and watching that it doesn't evaporate.

Geoff J.

Great recipe! I chose the slow cook variation. There was NO liquid left in the OnePot after 7 hours. So I plan to add at least 1 cup next time. I live in Denver, so altitude is likely a factor.

Jamie B.

This was easy and delicious. The eggs yolks were the perfect addition.

Jennifer B.

I did a traditional slow Cooker on slow for six hours. Fabulous stew