Spoonie under pressure – addendum…

I got my new pressure cooker yesterday, and today I tried it on my solid-ring electric cooker.

I’d assumed that the cooker would be too sluggish in its response to the controls, as solid rings are cast-iron and retain a lot of heat, to be able to use the pressure cooker safely, but I got past that by using two rings, a big one to bring the cooker up to pressure, and a smaller ring, which I’d preheated to about 75% of its maximum, for the actual cooking.

It came up to pressure extremely quickly, far faster than my aluminium pressure cooker, at which point I moved it to the smaller ring, which maintained pressure even when I reduced it a notch, to just about 50%.

I left it alone for a few minutes to ensure all was well – and it was. Pressure was maintained (there’s a visual pressure indicator), and with a complete absence of the hissing and popping that worries so many people with older versions (and my aluminium one for that matter). No steam leakage at all, though the main control would vent if it was over-pressurised.

Ignore the critical comments on Amazon – they’re out of date and the design has been changed since then.

So far, then, so impressed.

There’s no getting away from the fact it’s a heavy bugger, though, and my advice, as I said previously, is to put it on the hob empty, and load it there. Then you can just clamp on the lid and get on with cooking. If, like me, you have to change rings, just slide it across – no need to lift it. Then when cooking is complete, slide it to a cold ring and vent the steam.

That’s for an electric cooker with solid rings, remember, so if you have a gas or a radiant/ceramic/halogen electric cooker then you don’t need to worry about that – just do everything on one burner/ring and turn off the heat when you’ve finished.

And that’s that. I don’t need my induction hob/camping stove combo after all, though with the price of electricity going up, I’m seriously thinking of investing in at least one induction-friendly pan for basic boiling tasks (very fast), and maybe a kettle too – it depends on the Wattage of my electric kettle** – the induction hob uses a maximum of 1.8kW, if the kettle is more than that, using the induction hob would be cheaper, and probably faster.

**Just checked, it’s 3kW. Depends now, then, on how much an induction-friendly kettle costs – it might not be cost effective.