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Pressure cookers. Should I get one? Are they scary?

(18 Posts)
Habbibu Sun 20-Oct-13 12:05:27

I eat a lot of pulses, and am wondering if investing in a pressure cooker might be a good idea. Do people use them? What's best to cook in them? I always remember being quite scared that my mum's might explode. And if I should get one, what do you recommend?

Rummikub Sun 20-Oct-13 18:51:42

I have one, but rarely use it. I got it originally to cook toovar lentils. They are scary, I still have a stain on my ceiling when the steam spurted up! I now just use a large pan, much safer!

ilovepowerhoop Mon 21-Oct-13 20:19:51

we got one from argos and use it for soup, chilli, bolognese. Dh also cooked the filling for our steak pie in it at the weekend and it was very yummy and the meat was lovely and tender

ilovepowerhoop Mon 21-Oct-13 20:22:40

we have this one

Habbibu Mon 21-Oct-13 20:24:14

Oh, gosh, I forgot all about this thread. Hmm. I don't eat a great deal of meat. I wonder if it's better for meat. Thank you both, anyway.

LakeFlyPie Tue 22-Oct-13 03:11:33

I love my pressure cooker, use it most days, often for pulses.
Also have a slow cooker which rarely gets used as I can usually get the same results with pressure cooker in under 30 mins.
Mine is a stainless steel one I found in random aisle in Aldi and not at all scary to use smile

Habbibu Tue 22-Oct-13 12:50:10

Do you think it does pulses better? I don't have a good track record with dried ones - they never seem as soft as I'd like.

TooMuchRain Tue 22-Oct-13 12:59:57

I have one and use it for pulses because it is so much quicker, I also use it for making stock from bones and don't find it scary smile

Habbibu Tue 22-Oct-13 13:36:25

Don't you think that it might ... EXPLODE? I don't know why this bothers me. I'm normally very relaxed about things. I'm starting to wonder if I had a childhood trauma I've suppressed. Mum always had to stick hers under cold water when it had finished - do you still have to do that?

LakeFlyPie Tue 22-Oct-13 19:26:21

I follow these cooking times and find the beans etc plenty soft enough.

I prefer brown rice but find it take ages on the hob so use pressure cooker and it's ready in 10-12 minutes.

I'm not sure if it would be possible to explode it, I think they all have an inbuilt safety valve.
I have left mine on the hob by accident a couple of times and it makes a loud hissing sound which I assume is the safety regulator; it's always hissed not boomed though!

You can run it under cold water for quick release but most of the recipes I've followed use the natural release method which is included in the cooking time.

Habbibu Tue 22-Oct-13 21:06:49

Oh, thank you. I'm thinking I might ask Santa... And yy to brown rice. I think I may be being convinced.

PolterGoose Wed 23-Oct-13 17:11:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ohright Wed 23-Oct-13 23:10:29

How does a pressure cooker work? By creating steam out of the water you put in it. This steam puts high pressure on the food so it tenderises.
Now that same steam can scald and burn you badly if you let it out by opening the pressure cooker when it is hot.
So let it cool down before opening. OR cool the cooker under a running cold water tap for a minute or two.
There is a valve you can press to see whether there is steam inside.
NEVER forget to turn off the heat after the specified time. This is what can cause an explosion. Using a loud timer is a good idea.
Read your pressure cooker book to see how much water you need to add to different foods. NEVER put more water than necessary.

ohright Wed 23-Oct-13 23:14:54

Pressure cookers are great for meat, chicken, dhals, potatoes, rice, vegetables.
They really cut down the cooking time which helps a lot.
There are foods you can cook at the same time by putting it in different containers that fit together inside the cooker, and lift out together. Many pressure cookers come ready equipped with these containers.

PolterFucker Wed 23-Oct-13 23:15:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ohright Thu 24-Oct-13 06:23:35

you are right PolterFucker. Pressure means a higher boiling point.
My point is to ensure safety by NOT trying to open the cooker unless it is cool. If you are in a hurry then cool it under the tap. Then the food could be undercooked.
And you have to turn off the heat once the specified time is over. Otherwise the food goes on boiling inside, the water gets finished and the food could be ruined.
A timer really helps.
You can save even more energy by cooking enough dhal for two meals, for instance, and freezing half for later.You have to check how long it takes to tenderise meat.Some people like a bit of bite to their meat. Some like it melting tender. So make a note!
Hawkins Futura takes an even shorter time than other cookers. I have found. Once it starts hissing, cook only two minutes for dhals if you want them whole but tender, and three if you want them mashed.
Large potatoes not more than three minutes.

Habbibu Thu 24-Oct-13 09:46:38

I'm convinced! Thanks, all.

ohright Fri 25-Oct-13 19:55:41

For recipes please go to

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