Pressure cookers are capable of reducing the cooking time by applying pressure created by the boiling of a cooking liquid. They trap steam inside them and thereby increase the internal pressure which allows the temperature within the pressure cooker to rise. When buying a pressure cooker, a number of factors must be kept in mind so as you buy the right one according to your needs.
A pressure cooker made of durable, high quality stainless steel must be preferred as it might not change the flavor of the acidic ingredients. Moreover, stainless steel offers corrosion and stain resistance and provides shine to the pot. However, one must carefully look for the bottom stamp or label to check the composition of the metal. All stainless steel is not the same and generally a composition of 10% nickel and 18% chromium is preferred.
Electric or Stove Top Pressure Cooker
All sorts of pressure cookers are meant to do pressure cooking however; the difference lies in terms of the time taken to get the job done and the recipes they can follow. Electric pressure cookers are less durable and powerful but more convenient. They are best for people with limited kitchens and those who are afraid to fiddle with the heat settings. On the other hand, stovetop pressure cookers are faster and more powerful and durable. They are ideal when power and speed is the demand and are mostly suitable for expert cooks.
Non stick pressure cookers should be avoided as the non stick coating does not last long and is associated with causing some health issues. The coating might get damaged due to the contact with any utensils, metal steamer basket, or bones. This might lead to the aluminum beneath the coating to come in contact with the food.
Before deciding upon the size of the pressure cooker, you must take into account the storage space, the number of servings you usually prepare, and your budget. For most foods, pressure cookers should not be filled more than two-thirds while for foods that foam and expand during cooking, they must not be more than half full. It is generally recommended to have a 6-quart as the minimum size of a pressure cooker. You can buy a bigger one depending on your budget and servings as well. Choose Pressure Cooker is packed with information about various pressure cookers and the reviews and ratings for each.
Modern pressure cookers have a number of safety features including a locking lid, lid lip vent, primary and secondary valve for pressure release, and automatic shut off. Moreover, the premium pressure cookers have even more safety features.
Accessories and Warranty
It is generally preferred that a product from a renowned company is chosen so that the parts and accessories are easily available. In case of wear and tear of the small parts of a pressure cooker, a well known manufacturer might easily replace them. Though a good pressure cooker might last for several decades however; a company that gives warranty of its products and parts would be more preferable.