Sunday, March 29, 2015
Recently, I purchased Amy Chaplin's At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen, which is an inspiring cookbook, and I'll definitely write more about it later. However, the book is more than a collection of recipes: Many of the book's pages are devoted to how Chaplin stocks her pantry and prepares her weekly staples. Chaplin is an avid proponent of owning a pressure cooker, in particular, for making beans. She recommends a 5-quart model as the ideal size for cooking 2 cups of beans or soup for four people.
Meanwhile, Bon Appetit, one of my favorite food magazines, devoted a page to its love of the pressure cooker. Suddenly, it seems everyone is using a pressure cooker!
I've never owned a pressure cooker, and I'm fairly resistant to buying additional kitchen gadgets, but all this talk has gotten me thinking about owning one myself. For beans alone, it would be a handy thing to have. However, at more than one hundred dollars, a pressure cooker is a pretty significant investment. Though it would also probably pay off--and not just in saved time: If you can make beans in 20 minutes, you're more likely to make them from scratch than to reach for a can, and a pound of dried beans costs less than a 13.5 oz. can of cooked beans. Not only are pressure cookers economical, because they cook food in a reduced time, they save energy. Better taste, cost savings, and an ecological choice? I've almost convinced myself to take the plunge. Here are some recommended models:
Kuhn Rikon's Duromatic Pressure Cooker, $219.99 on amazon.com, and two other models. Chaplin also likes the Kuhn Rikon brand.
WMF Perfect Plus's Pressure Cooker, $159.87 for the 4 1/2-quart model on amazon.com. While, the food editor at my office likes the models by Fagor.
What about you? Do you own a pressure cooker? If so, do you have a model that you love? Anything you like to cook in yours? I'd love to hear more about why I should consider investing in a a pressure cooker of my own.