Under Pressure

I love, love, LOVE cooking with a pressure cooker.  I know they scare most people, and that’s probably why I’m so attached to them.  There’s a certain element of danger.  When I use the pressure cooker, I pretend I’m Gene Wilder in Willy Wonka, driving the Womkamobile, with noise and chaos all aound, screaming, “She might BLOW!”

And, at the end, you have these wonderfully softened and seasoned green beans and new potatoes.  So pretty and peaceful – you totally forget the rush of a few minutes before.

I just love cooking on the edge.

Posted in Food. 3 Comments »

3 Responses to “Under Pressure”

  1. j2izzo Says:

    I must confess I have never cooked with a pressure cooker. Having read your love for the machine and having watched one too many Iron Chef episodes I finding myself just itching to try it out!

    Any favorite recipes or entree suggestions for a 1st timer?

  2. Slartibartfast Says:

    j2izzo – here’s something interesting: the popup thingie on my pressure cooker doesnt work anymore, so I always “use the force” when it comes to cooking length. So, I guess, I’m proably living on the edge even more than I let on 😉

    Nevertheless, here is what I made last night, a wonderful, simple side dish:

    Green beans and new potatoes. On a weeknight, it’ll be canned green beans,on weekends, I’ll get a”mess” of fresh pole beans at the farmer’s marketand snap em.

    It’s real easy when you use canned, just empty two cans (juice and all) into the cooker. (When I cook JUST green beans, I don’t add any more liquid). Anyway, quarter the new potatoes, and mix them in with the beans. Add a dash of salt and pepper, and my secret ingredient:

    Goya Ham Concentrate. A whole packet. Or, if you’re not on a diet like me, add salt pork, fatback, or even just a couple of slices of bacon.

    (If you’re not into southern fare, stick wit the Goya, and add a little more pepper)

    Add enough water to just cover the beans and taters, and put on the lid.

    Turn your stove to high (medium high for gas), and leave it there. Even when you think she’s going to blow.

    It’s going to get noisy! I love that part.

    Now, if you have a WORKING pressure cooker, the popup thingie will, well, pop up when the pressure reaches a certain point (signifying the food is done). For safety’s sake, please read the instructions that came with your cooker.

    Anyway, that’s a simple recipe, a great side dish (we had veggie/cornbread night last night), and it’s tailor made for the pressure cooker.

  3. Sue Germain Says:

    The THINGIE is the Pressure Regulator. When it starts to jiggle this signifies that the food is being cooked. If you are cooking green beans with potatoes you should let it jiggle for 8 to 10 minutes. I always add a little onion for flavor, like my mother use to do. Fry the fat back in the pressure cooker for a couple of minutes before adding the beans and potatoes. Make sure to discard any excess drippings. I add 1 1/2 cups of water. You can always cook out the water once you remove the lid. Make sure the Air Vent\Cover Lock is completely down before removing the lid.

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