Sunday, October 18, 2009

Fagor Pressure Cooker Review

Fagor Pressure Cooker

If there is one thing that can say revolutionized my cooking more than anything else, I would say it is a Pressure Cooker.  Last spring I picked up a late model Fagor Pressure Cooker from Craig's List.

I initially bought the pressure cooker because I wanted to start using dried beans in all my recipes instead of the canned ones.  With a pressure cooker you can make dried beans without presoaking or thinking ahead.  Awesome, right?  But little did I know that I would use the pressure cooker for soooo much more.

I was so excited when I first got my pressure cooker, that I updated to Facebook status saying so.  I received a lot of cautions to be careful on and offline.  What you need to know is that today's pressure cookers are much safer than the pressure cookers our moms and grandmas used.  A safe modern pressure cooker will have three safety measures: a pressure regulator, vents to let out excess pressure and windows in the top that open in the event of excess pressure.

I LOVE my Fagor Pressure Cooker, and here is why:

1) Cooks food FAST!  My Chili took 4 minutes on high pressure yesterday.  Homemade Chicken Broth in 30 minutes.  Lentil Soup in 7 minutes.  Soups and Meats that used to take me an hour or more to make are done in minutes.  Those minutes are precious when I get home from work tired and hungry and want to prepare a healthy meal fast for my family.  When I use my food processor to prep the ingredients, even the chopping only takes a couple of minutes.

2) Uses a lot less energy than boiling something for hours or putting it in the oven.  That means it is green and it saves you money on your electricity bill.

3) Healthier - according to the Fagor website, 50% more vitamins and minerals are retained when pressure cooking.

4) Great Food - The food from a pressure cooker is great.  Unlike a slow cooker, where sometimes I feel like the food kind of disintegrates and tastes a little off, I think the pressure cooker helps things taste better.  You can buy a cheaper cut of meat and it will taste as tender as a pricey cut of meat.

.....But, there are a few things you will need to know about Pressure Cooking.
* Because the food is cooking under pressure, it is a little bit louder than using a traditional stock pot.  I am sensitive to noise, but because it is only for a few minutes, I can handle it.
* You will have to spend some time learning how to cook things in a pressure cooker.  I highly recommend the Pressure Perfect book that has recipes and charts that will teach you what you can cook in a pressure cooker and how you can adapt your own recipes to your pressure cooker.  I spent about 30 minutes reading through the first pages.  I consult the book frequently as a reference to adapt the recipes I already use.
* Not everything cooks in a pressure cooker.  You need to be careful when cooking things with tomatoes in them.  It can be done, you just need to do it right.

Here are some additional pictures of my Fagor Pressure Cooker:

Here is what the inside of the lid looks like:

Fagor Pressure Cooker Lid



Here is what a Valve Looks Like.  It attaches to the lid:

Fagor Pressure Cooker Valve

You can buy a Pressure Cookers from a variety of places, but if you find this post useful, you can buy it through the link below and I will receive a small portion of the sale value.

Buy a Pressure Cooker on Amazon.com

2 comments:

Maggie said...

Great post! I've wanted a pressure cooker for awhile but just don't know anyone who has actually used one in real life. It's nice to "meet" another Michigan foodblogger too!

MaltaMom said...

Maggie, I honestly don't know how I would live without it. I use it all the time. Since I like to make a lot of things on my own, it is an invaluable tool for me as a working mom. I can come home from work at 5PM and have dinner on the table very quick all from non-processed ingredients.

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