Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Under Pressure

Yep, I did it. I splurged and bought an electronic pressure cooker! IP for shorthand.

Y'all know I have a kitchen gadget obsession.  The IP is now being distributed via Target. I scored a great deal. On sale for $99.95 (before tax), an additional 10 % instant rebate, 5% for using my Target debit card and a $10 rebate. Woot!

Soooo shiny!

I have had a cook top pressure cooker and I have a pressure canner. This electronic IP is AMAZING. No more rumbling, jiggling weight. It has several safety features built in. It is so easy to use.

The first thing I did after un-boxing my IP--after giggling and doing a little jig--was to wash all the parts and read every piece of literature that came with the IP. Next, a quick visit to the website to  watch the tutorial video. Only then did I set it up and perform the pressure test. Everything worked like a charm!

The first night I made beef vegetable soup. I sauteed the semi-frozen  diced stew beef  (12 oz beef in 1 TBS oil)) in the IP. IN THE POT! My crock pot doesn't have that function.  Next I added 1  (15oz) can of low sodium beef broth, 1 (8 oz)  can tomato sauce, 1 can (8 oz) diced tomatoes, 1 can of water (15 oz), 1 teaspoon of better than bouillon vegetable base,  1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 1 frozen bag  (12 oz) soup vegetable mix, and 2 bay leaves. After a quick stir, closing the IP, I selected the Soup function, high pressure, and set the timer for 35 minutes. Natural release (NR) for 20 minutes.  The meat was falling apart tender, perfect vegetables, great flavor.

The 2nd night I made soup beans and ham. I did soak my beans overnight as per my usual method. I sauteed 1 cup mirepoix and 8 oz diced ham  in 1 tsp bacon grease. I added 4 cups hot water, my soaked/ rinsed beans, seasoned with 2 bay leaves, and 1 teaspoon Penzey's Sunny Paris, and 1/2 teaspoon Chicago .  Placed the lid, turned the lever to seal,  Pressed the Bean/ Chili button, high pressure, set the timer to 35 minutes and walked away. 10 Minutes NR, then quick release.  My beans were finished in 35 minutes. Absolutely perfect texture with an earthy, slightly salty/ sweet and smokey flavor.

Country style pork ribs. I sauteed the season ribs (Penzey's Chicago seasoning) in 2 tsp oil, covered the ribs in sliced onions. Added  3/4 cup water w/ a shot of honey bourbon and 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (ACV). I selected Meat/Stew, high pressure for 40 min. I used a honey bourbon mustard glaze and baked it in the oven for 15 min (400°F). I served it with a salt and pepper crusted potato and a side of broccoli slaw. The ribs were fall off the bone, melt in your mouth tender..

Chicken & dumplings-1 pound boneless, skinless trimmed chicken thighs (whole, semi-defrosted) sauteed in 1 teaspoon butter, 2 cups water, and 1 heaping tablespoon Better than Bouillon Roasted Chicken base. I selected Meat/Stew, HP 8min/NR 10min/QR. Use 2 forks to pull the chicken into rough cubes/ thick shred. I added 1 cup mirepoix (frozen), 2/3 cup peas & carrots (frozen), 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning, 1 cup water, and1 bag of Reames dumpling noodles (frozen). I gave it a quick stir, selected Soup, HP 10 min and NR 20min I had to go to the grocery for milk, ha. Opened it up when I came home, gave it a quick stir, added some pepper and it was perfect!

I always thought I was a decent cook, now I feel like an amazing cook. Apparently you can make lasagna, hard boiled eggs, baked bread and make a cheesecake in the IP. As well as a kazillion other things. There are several online communities around the pressure cooking. It is almost cult-like, haha.  Best kitchen gadget purchase ever!

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