Journal of a 40-something year old wife, mother and chicpreneur.

Pressure CookerA couple of years ago, I discovered the miracle of pressure cooking. I have heard about the concept before but never really considered its cooking method for my kitchen.

My first electric pressure cooker was really an impulse purchase. I was at the electronic store, the sales assistant was doing a demo on how to use the electric pressure cooker, I was impressed, the price promotion was good and the rest as we say it, was history…

Anyway, that pressure cooker stayed in its box for a good three to four months before I actually opened it up and tried to cook in it. My first recipe turned out disastrous because I didn’t understand enough about how pressure cookers work. Anyway, this experience led me to do a bit more research on pressure cooking. I also compiled a long list of pressure cooker recipes on Pinterest to try out. I’ve since tried a number of recipes (mostly successful, thank God) and am still discovering and trying out new recipes.

So anyway, that’s my pressure cooker story.

The point of this post is to share with you what I’ve learned through my research on pressure cooking so far. I hope this information while brief, will help if you are new to this cooking concept.

What is pressure cooking?

Pressure cooking is a method of cooking food faster in a sealed pot called pressure cookers.

How does it work?

Simply put, pressure cooking uses steam pressure in a sealed pot to cook food. The steam in the pressure cooker builds up high pressure and allows food to cook faster.

The best explanation that I’ve found so far on how pressure cookers work is from Modernist Cuisine’s website which you can access here.

Brief history of pressure cooking

The concept of pressure cooking has been around for many, many, many years. According to Wikipedia (the source of almost all my information on the internet), the method of pressure cooking was first introduced by Dennis Papin a French physicist in 1679.

Since its introduction, the pressure cooking method has gone through many revolutionary advancements leading to the creation of what I currently own which is an electric pressure cooker.

Types of pressure cookers

There are two types of pressure cookers: stove top pressure cooker or electric pressure cooker.

Stove top pressure cookerStove top pressure cookers         

Stove top pressure cookers allows manual handling and the heating source comes from the stove top. The stove top pressure cooker allows more options in terms of usage, the pot can be used as a stockpot or a saucepan. The one thing I like about stove pot pressure cookers is that you can also sear or saute ingredients easier compared to an electric pressure cooker.


Electric Pressure CookerElectric pressure cookers             

An electric pressure cooker is much different from a stove top pressure cooker. It has a built-in heating mechanism. The best feature of an electric pressure cooker is that it has a pre-set digital timer that allows you to set the cooking time suitable for the dish being prepared. The electric pressure cooker does not require monitoring while cooking as everything is pre-set.

To be honest, I do not and have never owned a stove top pressure cooker and have never tried it. I currently own a Philips Electronic Pressure Cooker and therefore all the recipes that I have tried will be suitable for this particular gadget.

So, that was a brief introduction to pressure cooking. I hope the information has been useful. If you’re ready, let’s start pressure cooking!