Trending Tastes: The pressure cooker is back

Pressure cooking has been around for a long time now. The earliest models of pressure cookers came with a list of defects that somehow discouraged people from using them for so long. However, the trend has been changing drastically and the modern pressure cooker can easily pass as the best way to cook your meals. I don’t know about you but I am a plug and play kind of person who likes everything working in a flash. You can imagine my excitement when I came across the pressure cooker for the first time.

How does it work?

The pressure cooker works on a very simple principle. It comes with a valve that is used to control the steam pressure inside the pot. When the pot is subjected to heat, the liquid inside of the pot forms steam which raises the pressure inside the pot, hence the name pressure cooker. The pressure has two main effects. First, it raises the water’s boiling point. When cooking groceries or any other food, the water can only heat up to the water’s boiling point which is 100 degrees. However, the steam’s pressure raises the boiling point of water up to highs of about 150 degrees Celsius. This has the effect of cooking the food faster than when boiling water with conventional means. Secondly, the high pressure forces moisture into the food which also makes the food cook faster. But in addition to that, the moisture also helps foods to cook well since it goes deeper into foods such as meat.

The extreme pressure also has another advantage; it promotes caramelization and browning of food. This leads to high flavor in foods cooked with a pressure cooker. It is impossible to retain all the flavors in foods when cooking through boiling.

pressure cooker on kitchen counter top

What can you cook with a pressure cooker?

Pressure cooker can be used to cook just about anything. And also use best stainless steel cookware. You can use it to cook rice, beef, and potatoes and so on. It can be used for tougher food items like meat since it softens them faster and the food cooks well. It is a most preferred method of coking meat because of its tenderizing effects. However, even though it is used for every other food, most people prefer using it for beans, potatoes and vegetables.

Challenges of a pressure cooker

Like all things electrical, a pressure cooker comes with its own challenges. To begin with, you have to wait for a certain period of time for the pot to heat up before putting your food inside. Then the food has to be cooked at a certain pressure for a certain period of time. Most pressure cookers come with charts that give directions on the amount of time each food should take when cooking. However, once you get used to it, you will not have a problem with this. One thing about pressure cookers is that once you start cooking food, you cannot open the lid to see how the food is cooking or even to taste it. So you must rely on your judgement as much as you trust the cooker to deliver.

pressure cooker on kitchen counter

All in all, the pressure cooker is worth all the effort and so much more. Besides its efficiency, the cooker is fast and saves you a lot in terms of energy and money.