3 Ways to Use a Pressure Cooker
The pressure cooker can be an exceptionally useful tool in any kitchen, simulating the effects of slow-cooking methods like braising in a fraction of the time. If you don’t have one of these devices or rarely put it to work, you should consider the ways could assist you in quickly preparing meals worthy of your online culinary training. Here are a few ideas to get you started on making fantastic meals:
1. Speed up your soups and stews
The pressure cooker is ideal for preparing soups and stews on weeknights when you don’t have hours to spend on dinner. Cooking Light offered a recipe for a Spanish chickpea soup, pointing out that just preparing the legumes usually requires overnight soaking and more than two hours of simmering to reach the desired tenderness. This soup takes only about an hour to cook.
Saute onions, garlic and chorizo before mixing in water, chicken broth, chickpeas and bay leaves. Once you seal the pressure cooker lid, bring it up to high pressure and high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and cook for an hour. Then, release the pressure and stir in escarole, sherry vinegar, salt to fill out the soup’s flavors.
2. Take the effort out of risotto
Risotto can be an exceptionally labor-intensive dish, with many recipes calling for two pans and constant stirring. As The Kitchn pointed out, however, pressure can lead to rice cooking about four times faster. That makes the pressure cooker perfect for experimenting with dishes like a potato risotto.
The recipe begins with sauteing onion in olive oil. Pour in the rice and stir for about five minutes, waiting for it to absorb the liquid. Add a quarter cup of white wine, again stirring until it is absorbed. Then you’re done with the hard work. It’s time to add in other ingredients like potatoes, vegetable stock, tomato paste, and salt. Cook for five minutes before releasing the pressure. With a last bit of mixing and a pinch of thyme, you have a delicious risotto with far less effort than traditional preparation.
3. Make tentacles tender
If you’re ready to get a little more adventurous with your pressure cooker, Serious Eats pointed out that it’s ideal for octopus. Place a whole, thoroughly rinsed octopus in the cooker and cover it with water, mixing in some salt. Cook at high pressure for about 15 minutes. Then, depressurize, and use a knife to check the octopus’s tenderness. If the blade does not easily slide into the thicker end of a tentacle, give it another five minutes in the cooker.
For cold applications, like seafood salad or ceviche, all you have to do now is cut up the pleasantly chewy meat. Otherwise you can grill the octopus or give it a nice sear on the stovetop. Either way, you can be confident that you made the tentacles soft enough to eat without resorting to any odd traditions, like cooking it with a wine cork.
The pressure cooker can make your daily cooking easier, and you may also find uses for it in a professional kitchen. With the skills you learn in culinary academy and the right tools, you can quickly prepare a huge variety of tasty dishes.