Pressure Cooker Recipes 5

Pressure Cooker recipes: Instant Pot®

Note the “®” in the link above: this site is written by the makers of the Instant Pot® – this is a commercial web site. What is nice about this fact is that there are no little annoying video ads from other businesses. The site has good information on how to use a pressure cooker and lots of recipes.

I like the “about Instant Brands, Inc.” section of this web site – it is friendly and casual. Instant Brands Inc. was founded in 2009 by a team of Canadian technology veterans. Now they have added more appliances to their line: an immersion circulator sous vide, blenders, and multicookers without pressure. Sous vide interests me as a scientific experiment. It reminds me of the constant temperature water baths I used in a lab. Just think, I could put a steak in a plastic bag in one of those laboratory water baths set at 49˚ C for a day or two and see what happens. Hey, the Instant Pot Sous Vide circulator is less than a hundred dollars! Guess I could try one someday.

An instant pot is a multi-cooker: a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, warmer, and sometimes more, such as canning/sterilization and yogurt. The control panel for an instant pot contains all of those functions, plus settings for each. One version of Instant Pot has blue tooth capabilities. I do not have an instant pot, I have an electric pressure cooker. It has only six functions: low pressure, high pressure, brown,  saute, simmer, and warm. Still, I can do about everything in my electric pressure cooker that I could do in an Instant Pot, except for canning/sterilizing and making yogurt.

Instant Pot® is a brand name, but several other manufacturers make appliances that have similar multi-functions. Often, these multi-functioned appliances are also referred to as “instant pots”. I advise anyone interested in purchasing a multicooker to read online reviews. I haven’t used an Instant Pot®, so I can’t contrast/compare them with my electric pressure cooker. I have set up multicookers at our Lyons Gardening Club Chile Cook-off, and the control panels can be confusing to a non-owner.

I am not likely to purchase an instant pot. I already have a rice cooker as a stand alone appliance. If I want to cook rice and a stew or beans at the same time, I am glad I have both appliances. Instant pots also function as a slow cooker, again, I already own a slow cooker.

I clicked on the Instant Pot® “resources” section. I find a good description on how to get started with an electric pressure cooker. The “initial test run, water test” caught my eye. To familiarize a novice with an electric pressure cooker, they suggest making a trial run with just water: put 3 cups of water in your pressure cooker and run for 2 minutes, then use quick or natural release. This test allows the new user to figure out exactly how to use the device, what to expect, and make sure they have it set up correctly.

The site has other useful sections, such as terminology, how a pressure cooker works, glossary of terms, and downloadable recipe booklets, and downloadable cooking time tables.

All in all, Instant Pot® is an informative site that is easy to navigate.

Instant Pot®

The link above takes you to the recipe section of the site. It has a convenient search function on the very first page. You have the option to enter up to 4 search fields at one time: meal (breakfast, lunch, etc.), cuisine, diet, and recipe (any term you want). Be aware that this will pull up recipes for devices other than a pressure cooker, for instance, a blender. Besides the search option, there are photos of dishes that you can browse through and click to find the recipe. There are 24 recipe photos per page and 28 pages, so that’s 672 recipes! The recipes are largely modern American in style, and often call for convenience or branded products, such as Progresso™ beef broth, Frank’s RedHot® Cayenne Pepper Sauce, Old El Paso™ chicken taco seasoning mix, frozen hash browns, etc.

Chicken and Dumplings drew my attention, until I read all of the ingredients – I don’t like refrigerator biscuits. The recipe pressure cooks the chicken, vegetable and broth mixture a mere 2 minutes (quick release). Then, the biscuits are added. If I made this dish, I would make my own biscuits.

Tuscan Chicken and Rice cooks for 10 minutes, natural release for 5 minutes, then quick release. The ingredients include boneless chicken thighs, basil pesto, artichoke hearts, sun dried tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and white rice. The rice is cooked with all the other ingredients under pressure.

Pepperoncini Beef Roast calls for boneless beef chuck roast, pepperoncini peppers, ranch dressing mix, and au jus gravy mix. It’s a 45 minute pressure cook, 10 minutes slow release, then quick release. This recipe illustrates the reliance of convenience foods in many of the recipes on this site. I do like the idea of pepperoncinis and beef in a stew, so if I try this recipe, I’ll modify the ranch dressing and au jus gravy mixes.

Cheesy Chicken Taco Soup is a Pillsbury recipe. The ingredients include boneless chicken breasts, black beans, corn, salsa, cheese, and cilantro.

There are also lots of recipes for desserts.

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