Have I mentioned how much I love my pressure cooker?
Seriously, though…have I mentioned it? Cuz I am NUTS about this pressure cooker. I keep wondering how I cooked anything decent on a weeknight without it. Oh wait. I didn’t cook anything decent on weeknights. I made my family live off of a diet largely made of convenience foods, like frozen pizza, pizza rolls, chicken nuggets, fish sticks, instant rice, pasta (angel-hair…cooks faster), canned corn, or baby carrots. If we got home “early” (before 6:30pm), we might get crazy and make tacos. But generally nothing terrible healthy since that would require me to take something out of the freezer more than 10 minutes before I want to eat it.
But now? Now I make 1-inch thick boneless pork chops in about 20 minutes. From frozen. Yes, I said frozen. That 20 minutes, by the way, is prep AND cook time. And the chops were so tender that we could cut the meat easily with a fork.
I also can make frozen boneless-skinless chicken breasts in about 15 minutes. And earlier this week, I cooked a whole chicken, about 3-1/2 pounds, from frozen in about 90 minutes. When I opened the pot, we almost had to use a fishing net to pull out the chicken because it had fallen apart, the meat falling off the bones, and even the bones were falling apart (dude, I grabbed a drumstick and the head of the bone broke off in my hand). The meat was so juicy and tender that my ravenous kids kept asking for more chicken…I had to go so far as to bribe them with the chicken in order to get them to eat their rice and vegetables first. Crazy!
I wish I had paid more attention to my mom when she was cooking with her pressure cooker. Some of my earliest memories include the sound of the steam regulator on her pressure cooker rattling away as she cooked some stew or a roast for Sunday dinner after church, so I’m not sure why it didn’t occur to me sooner to get one. I guess part of it is that I didn’t realize how much quicker I could get dinner prepared. When I first started researching, I thought I had misread that you could cut your cooking time down to half, or even a third, of what it might be in the oven or in a regular pot on the stove. But as it turns out, my critical reading skills are still relatively intact, and my cooking experiments (and lack of food poisoning) are proof. And I can still wait to pull stuff out of my freezer at the last second.
Complete and total sidenote:
I’m sure a few of you have noticed what a mess my site has become. I had a few glasses of wine and thought I could play in the Stylesheet editor. Well, I supposed I played just fine…just didn’t actually do anything constructive and now I can’t figure out how to fix it. So once Justin wakes up from his nap, I’m going to park him in front of my computer to fix my page so that it looks half-purdy again. Though the random pics that are normally in my header won’t be showing up until our server in the house is resurrected from the dead. Which could be a little while. Maybe around Easter since that’s the season for things like that to occur (hey, not being irreverent, just making a really bad, round-about reference to tax-refund season).
Also, can I see a show of hands of how many of you, after seeing my titl now have Queen’s “Under Pressure” stuck in your heads? And how many of you, after realizing that Vanilla Ice stole the bass-line from Queen, now have “Ice Ice Baby” stuck in your heads?