akh

pressure cooker

In tool on October 30, 2009 at 2:27 pm

for my first foray into pressure cooker land, i decided to start with something basic – beans. did i mention he is the proud new owner of a pressure cooker?

these particular beans – a gift from a coworker from rancho gordo new world specialty food – actually deserve a post to themselves. called “rice beans,” they are white like navy beans, but smaller, longer and thinner… like a large grain of rice.

beerbeansrancho

rifting off a recipe for white chicken chili that is a staple of my mom’s repertoire (also deserving of it’s own blog post), i based my flavors around beer and cumin.

he had already made an amazing tagine of lamb and peas in the pressure cooker, so i had an experienced eye overseeing operations.

using the pressure cooker pot like a regular pot, you start by cooking your onion and spices.

beerbeanssaute

then add the beans, a bottle of dark beer and some chicken stock. (in the case of a meat-based stew, you can brown your meat right in the pot itself.)

beerbeanspre

herein lies the miracle of the pressure cooker. we did not soak the beans – they went in dry. for those bean-cooking experts out there, you know this is unusual. and then, instead of cooking them for several hours… just 35 minutes in the pressure cooker. what do you think of that?!

the pressure cooker is also so easy to use that if you’re still learning the ins and outs like we are, you can actually release the steam

beerbeanssteamrelease

(can you see the steam coming out?! …kinda…)

and open it mid-cook to check out the progress or add more liquid, like we did.

although rather expensive for a high-end (german) model, the pressure cooker is going to come in quite handy this winter, especially for two people who could live on soups and stews alone.

imagine whipping up a pot of beans or a slow-cooked-tasting chili in under an hour flat.

beerbeansdone

top beer beans with cilantro for serving!

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