Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Pressure Cooking

Only recently did I start obsessing about pressure cooking.  Why?  Well, because it's hot outside and I do not want to heat up my entire house.  Plus, I am constantly reading or hearing how almost every country except Americans use this fine kitchen tool.  I'm always interested in how people cook and what tools they love.

I inherited my 1st presto 6 quart pressure cooker from my mother-in-law and it has sat in the storage room for years...I pulled it out yesterday because yesterday was the day I was determine to get this right...or at least attempt it.  I had just been grocery shopping and I found some really nice oxtails.  My Dad made oxtail soup delicious.  Miss him.  I pulled out Mommie Dixie's pressure cooker, washed it and began filling it:  4 oxtails, 1 chopped onion, 2 garlic cloves, salt, pepper, cumin, oregano and water 1/2 way full, just as the pressure began building up it began spewing water (need to replace the seal)...I turned the burner off, let the pressure subside.  In the mean time I pulled out my new Futuro Pressure Cooker.  New?  Yes told you I'd been obsessing about a pressure cooker, I knew I wanted a big one for my catering...I'd seen this in a magazine and I knew this one was the one.  Made in Spain.  It's so pretty and did not disappoint.  I cooked the oxtail soup in 45 minutes of pressure.  Once the pressure was taking place I set the timer for 25 minutes at that point I added the veggies: cabbage, celery, petite potatoes, carrots...and cooked it for 20 more minutes.  The whole house smelled amazing.  The broth was unbelievable, it had so much little time and such depth...who knew & why didn't I know.  Husband and baby loved it!  I know oxtail does not sound fancy but it really is a beautiful dish.  I served it like my parents did, with corn tortillas, lime and salsa.

I'm totally hooked.  This was such a great investment.  Today I cooked two batches of black beans (20 minutes) and again the broth had such depth.

Black Beans
4 cups black beans (soak overnight and drain)
2 cups chopped carrots
2 celery stalks chopped
1 onion chopped
3 garlic cloves chopped
1 T cumin
1 T oregano
4 tsp extra virgin olive oil
12 cups water

All ingredients in the pot.  Once pressure begins set timer for 20 minutes.  Upon pressure releasing salt to taste.  Done. 

¡Buen Provecho!

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