So, It Didn’t Explode… Yet…

Well… the good news is I’m alive y’all… after using my new electric pressure cooker for the first time on Sunday night.  There were no wayward flying food particles and/or explosions and I durn well didn’t have to spend the night scraping pasty stuff off the cieling.  I’d call that one a success right there… especially for someone of my skill level.  Stop it… I hear you… there was a skill level… it’s greater than zero, but probably less than one… but it’s still a dagnabbed level.

This here is what my pressure cooker looks like… except with less asparagusses and certainly none of that porky majiggers stuffed with mouse turds.  Of course, I was all anxiety ridden… mostly because I despise instruction manuals.  They’re usually useless.  Let’s write this as vague as we possibly can and then make anxiety girl pull her follicles out of her head.  Then, they refer you to this poorly drawn diagram that tells me absolutely nothing.  Here’s what needs to happen… some law needs to be passed where all instruction manuals must be written at a Kindergarten level and then painstakingly illustrated by Thomas Kinkade (what!?!?!?!?  He’s the painter of light… light equals knowledge which equals brain power which pretty much guarantees that mine will absorb something!)

Anywho… what ended up happening was I couldn’t figure out how to get the dagblasted lid on the top of the cooker.  Could NOT FIGURE IT!  I was reading the instructions like it wasn’t no thing, and of course I hadn’t attempted to put it on before I started the cooking process, so I ended up cooking my stoup (not a mispelling… by the time I figured everything out, it was cooked to the consistency of wallpaper paste) approximately 20 minutes longer than it should have cooked.  I called Madre over to help… nothing.  I called Padre over to help… nothing.  So, now you have 3 people around this teensy little pot, trying to sauder down the lid with a hammer.  I about dumped out the stoup and headed right to the store to return it… and then I vowed I’d never eat again… EVER (you see how irrational I get when trying to read instruction manuals).  I finally went to look at the picture on the box the cooker came in and voila!  Discovered we were trying to put the lid on with the handles facing the wrong direction.  Pictures… SEE… Pictures make the world go round.  Thomas Kinkade… get hired by the folks at Cuisinart… it’s obvious your career is going nowhere… might as well help we cooking savants of the world out!

Madre tried using it again tonight… she made a beef stew and then afterwards some rice pudding, which both turned out just lovely… according to her anyway.  I’m going to have to play around with the thing.  Vegetarian stew is next on my list… and then I might be tackling soaking beans to make me some chili!  I best get used to it… I checked the box… it did NOT come with a personal chef!

Question of the Day:  Have you ever cooked using a pressure cooker?  Any recipe ideas or tips?





Filed under Food

16 responses to “So, It Didn’t Explode… Yet…

  1. I wouldn’t worry about having a hard time getting the lid on, Whit- I watch the TV cooking shows, and the chefs all have a hard time getting the lids on and off, too. 🙂 Have fun with it!

  2. Avster

    The only pressure cooker I’ve used is a canning cooker. Still, I think I could have helped you out had you given me a ring. :b The lid to one of the canners my mother and I use has to put on with the handles a certain way.

    Love the snow!

  3. jenny

    I have never used a pressure cooker. It freaks me out. LOL Would love to get one. Looking for all the advice cooking tips you shall be receiving. You can pass it on to us scaredy cats!

  4. Jen

    Too bad your first experience with the pressure cooker was a disaster. I’ve never used one before so I have no advice. I am sure you will get it right next time though.

  5. Louisa a.k.a. ProudMomOfTwo

    Good job getting it figured out and testing it. You will have some successes for sure – just keep at it.

    Question of the Day: Have you ever cooked using a pressure cooker? Any recipe ideas or tips?

    I have but it was years ago.
    I love my slow cooker now.
    My mom gave me her whole kitchen when she moved from the farm to her little apartment in Nov. and I have been enjoying using every single pot/pan/skillet, griddle/my hutch/dishes/bowls/baking pans/…and just everything. Funny thing is …I don’t even have it all yet.
    LOL ( eek! )

  6. Natalie

    Getting the lid on, that was the hard part! Now you have it down, you are an expert! It’s so pretty! I have pressure cooker envy.

  7. Can’t say that I’ve used one, but I did a little research and found a great recipe that rated very well. Cooking Under Pressure is a nice reference book with a number of modern/gourmet- type recipes like this one.

    Creamy Risotto-

    2 tablespoons sweet butter
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1/3 cup finely minced onions
    1 1/2 cups Italian short grain white rice
    3 1/2-4 cups chicken stock
    1 cup grated gruyere cheese ( 4 oz)
    1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
    salt, if desired

    Heat the butter and oil in the cooker. Saute the onion until soft but not brown, about 2 minute Stir in the rice, making sure to coat it thoroughly with the fat. Stir in 3-1/2 c of the stock (watch for sputtering oil). Lock the lid in place (I hear that’s the hard part) and over high heat bring to high pressure. Adjust the heat to maintain high pressure and cook for 6 minutes. Reduce pressure. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to allow any excess steam to escape.
    Taste the rice, and if it’s not sufficiently cooked, add a bit more stock as you stir. Cook over medium heat until the additional liquid has been absorbed and the rice is desired consistency, another minute or two. When the rice is ready, stir in the Gruyere and Parmesan, add salt to taste and serve immediately.
    NOTES: Adding some sort of fat is critical when cooking rice and grains so that the liquid/starch doesn’t foam and plug up the steam vents.Keep a close eye on it toward the end as I imagine that if you use less water the rice might dry out in the last minute or so.

    For better taste and texture, it’s essential to use an Italian short-grain white rice such as Arborio, Carnaroli, or Maratelli. Traditionally the rice is not rinsed before cooking since the water would wash away starches that contribute to the velvety sauce enveloping each grain. The perfect risotto should be slightly soupy and properly chewy, with the rice offering just a pleasant resistance to the bite. For this reason, the pressure is always quick-released and the risotto must be served as soon as it is finished

    • Mmmm… it has been a long time since I’ve had risotto. I will have to try it again in my pressure cooker this time! Thanks for the recipe, Julie. And the book tip too!

      • Louisa a.k.a. ProudMomOfTwo

        FYI – if you can’t find gruyere cheese ( and I can’t here ) a good substitute is Swiss.

        Happy cooking!!!


  8. Pingback: Pressuring My Cooker… « craving a life

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