Thread Number: 71188  /  Tag: Recipes, Cooking Accessories
Stove top pressure cookers
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Post# 942328   6/7/2017 at 19:11 by appnut (TX)        

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I need a new stainless steel 6 qt. pressure cooker--induction compatible.  Am I to assume Presto is the default option? 





Post# 942338 , Reply# 1   6/7/2017 at 19:43 by parunner58 (Davenport, FL)        

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Hi Bob, I have 3 Fagor Splendid 4, 6, and 8qt. I love them and they are induction ready, whenever i would have to get a new range.


Post# 942339 , Reply# 2   6/7/2017 at 19:46 by appnut (TX)        

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Mike, I cannot figure out what the difference between Fagor Duo and Fagor Splendid. 


Post# 942344 , Reply# 3   6/7/2017 at 20:30 by Gyrafoam (Roanoke, VA)        

I have never used any other brand of pressure cooker other than Presto.
I have never had a problem with them and I've got many different styles and sizes. My favorite is an eight quart. I inevitably end up sharing whatever I cook, anyway.

I also like that I can get new parts at just about any old hardware store.


Post# 942348 , Reply# 4   6/7/2017 at 20:48 by parunner58 (Davenport, FL)        

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Bob, i made a mistake. I have one splendid, its one pressure setting 15psi and my other two are Duo combi set they have 2 pressure setting 8 and 15 psi.

Post# 942358 , Reply# 5   6/7/2017 at 21:58 by earthling177 (Boston, MA)        

Bob:

I do have a Fagor (6 qt, I think) from way back then -- it has 3 settings, I think, not sure, it's 5/10/15 PSI. I think I bought it in 1998. *Very* good, quiet, doesn't vent much. I *really* like the pots that let you set a pressure and vent it above that, so you *know* something needs adjusting -- some pots, like the Kuhn Rikon have a simpler, more durable valve, but it's just a rod that shows a number of rings to tell you what the pressure is, so you need to pay way more attention and lower the heat if you want to cook at the lower pressure(s). You still need to pay attention to the pots with settings, but it makes more noise when it's venting, so you know you have to lower the heat.

I know you are switching to induction, and that's wonderful. But *because* you are switching to induction I wanna talk about things that are not immediately obvious to people who never used it before. I presume you want to enjoy the speed that induction can bring when cooking. To use the burners at highest efficiency, you want pots that match the maximum diameter that burner can handle. That means you need to pick something to start, either choose a range/stove that has burners as close as possible to your pots/pans or choose a range and *then* buy pots/pans that match the burners. Sure, a pressure cooker that has an 8" bottom (the disk on the bottom, not the inside diameter in the pot) will heat up and come up to pressure on a 10" burner, but it will take longer than if it were cooking on a 8" burner or you had a 10" pressure cooker on the 10" burner. It will probably be still faster than most gas stoves, but why wait if you can match the two and get the pot on powerboost reach pressure in record time?

So, yeah, consider the sizes of the burners your stovetop will have, and maybe it will make more sense to buy a short and wide 8 or 10 quart pot instead of a tall and skinny 6 qt pot. The advantage of the short and wide pots will be speed, the advantage of the tall and skinny pots will be that you can often stack several steamer inserts and cook several dishes at the same time.

I'm not sure if you will be hand washing the pressure cooker(s), if you want to be able to put them in the dishwasher, make sure it is possible to do so: many PCs can have the *base* in the DW but not the lid with the valves; others (like some models from Fissler and WMF) let you quickly remove the valve/handle and you can just rinse those by hand and the rest of the pressure cooker, including lid, can go in the DW.

There's a lot more to say, and I sure hope you spur us into several interesting threads, but I'd like to mention at least 3 places to check -- please note I do not agree with *everything* that they have to say, but they do have the basics covered pretty well:

First, a Cook's Illustrated/America's Test Kitchen Equipment Review of pressure cookers in general






Then why they think the Fagor Duo is a best buy






And finally, a web site (link below) by Laura Pazzaglia -- she wrote several books and is an advisor for several manufacturers of pressure cookers. Her website has recipes, time tables, and you may want to check her reviews of the pots you are interested in. She also started a Youtube channel teaching how to use PCs (link from the website) and, even though I've been using PCs for decades, I've learned a few new things, so I encourage everyone to take a peek.

Besides the Fagor, I have 10 qt. Innova jiggler type PC (bought at the same time I got the Fagor) that was very nice, but they went out of business and the aluminum disk on the bottom of the PC is not induction compatible, so I'm not using it anymore. I also recently (past September, I think) got an 8 qt. WMF PerfectPro and a 10 qt. Fissler Vitaquick which I really love.

Another thing I nearly forgot.

If you use the pressure cooker on the induction stove, you will enjoy a lot of speed and convenience, but you will still need to keep an eye on the pressure and lower/raise the heat accordingly, just like a regular stove.

My suggestion, if you have one of those portable induction burners, is check if it has a temperature setting that is close to the pressure cooker. I have a Max Burton, I think, that I got before I bought the induction range, that has a 250F setting. I often start the PC on the stovetop and use the powerboost to reach pressure and, after about 2-3 minutes that it has the pressure stabilized I transfer the pot to the Max Burton set for 250F and let it complete the task there: the portable burner keeps the temperature steady. Some models also not only keep the temperature steady but can turn off on a timer so you don't even have to pay much attention to the process from the time it reached pressure. I don't use it to raise the pressure from the start because it's only 1,800W I think.

Have fun, and keep asking questions and telling us what you learn so we can all make quick progress together!

Cheers,
   -- Paulo.


CLICK HERE TO GO TO earthling177's LINK


Post# 942380 , Reply# 6   6/7/2017 at 23:00 by rp2813 (The Big Blue Bubble)        

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Bob, as you likely know, the Presto 6-quart is available in both aluminum and stainless steel.  I have the stainless version, which I bought because it's machine washable, but have only used it once.  Why?  Because it's tall and narrow, and I prefer a cooker with a wider diameter.  Keep this in mind as you decide on what to get.  After finding a 6-quart Mirro-Matic that's wider than it is tall, it has become the cooker I use the most out of my collection.  Browning large items is so much easier when they actually fit into the cooker.


Post# 942398 , Reply# 7   6/7/2017 at 23:45 by Northwesty (Renton, WA)        
Maybe you would like to try one like mine

Though I haven't used it yet

  Photos...       <              >      Photo 1 of 2         View Full Size
Post# 942423 , Reply# 8   6/8/2017 at 08:01 by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
I have all different kinds

But for a new one, Kuhn Rikon is the very best...But be prepared to part with some serious cash, I found a nearly new one at an estate sale for 40. 00, I GRABBED it up as a small one is in the 200 plus range.

Post# 942425 , Reply# 9   6/8/2017 at 08:09 by panthera (Rocky Mountains)        
I've both European and US Pressure Cookers/Saucepans/

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Canners

And here's my experience:

As long as the bottom works on induction, they'll all do the job.

However:

1) I live at an altitude which reduces 15psi to an effective 10.5psi. Unless you're at sea-level, forget anything but 15psi cookers. Every drop in pressure reduces the speed enormously - after 3000 feet, you have to add 5% to the cooking time for each 1000 feet. This is why anything but 15psi is useless except at sea-level for canning. Even in Chicago, you can't reach a true botulism killing temperature in a 10psi pressure cooker.

2) Nobody on the planet earth actually cooks at lower than the maximum pressure, so don't worry about how many 'speeds' a pressure cooker may have.

3) The nonsense about whistles and rattle mechanisms being not at 'good' as the spring loaded is just that - all my European (including FAGOR) pressure cookers release too much pressure, too. duh. So ignore those stupid arguments.

4) FAGOR and SILIT are the prettiest and easiest to clean. BUT - in contrast to PRESTO, both companies drop parts from their catalog over time. If you buy either one, it's not for forever. 

5) I like PRESTO - for the price, you're getting a very easy to use, very easy to clean, sturdy, true 15psi pressure cooker for which parts will be available well into the next century. They're also much cheaper as they show up on Ebay all the time and at garage sales. Just make sure the bottom is strongly attracted to a magnet. If it is, it works perfectly on induction. You absolutely do not need a 'special' induction bottom.

6) Eight quart is a far more practical size than six quart, as Steven said.

 

As to the aluminium vs. stainless-steel vs. enamel argument, that's entirely up to you. My daily non-induction driver is a 2.5 quart PRESTO in cast aluminium from the very late 1940s. My induction goto is a 2016 8 quart PRESTO Professional Stainless with induction sandwich disk which a neighbor bought, used once and hated. She's five foot nothing, I'm well over six and built like a brick outhouse. Thing is heavy. 

 

Oh, because of the way pressure cookers cook, discount the whole 'sandwich disk' width/thickness thing. Unless you're going to use this pressure pan for delicate sauces (which aren't pressure cooked), that's a distinction without a valid difference.




This post was last edited 06/08/2017 at 08:30
Post# 942455 , Reply# 10   6/8/2017 at 10:03 by joeekaitis (Rialto, California, USA)        
Double pressure cooker day at our house.

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Split pea soup in the 8 quart, brown rice and thinly sliced smoked sausage in the other.  Mix 'em together: a meal in a bowl.

 

Oh, Fagor Elite (original 15psi) 4/8qt. set, 6qt. standalone.  They're now called Splendid.  All Fagor cookers are induction-ready.

 

I throw the lids and gaskets in the Kenmore with Bubble Bandit because non-phosphate detergents are too acid or alkaline.  The gaskets are as soft and pliable as when they were new.  Ditto the safety valve in the lid.


Post# 942799 , Reply# 11   6/9/2017 at 23:45 by sudsmaster (East of SF, West of Eden)        

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Unless weight is a real issue, for everyday pressure cooking of meals, I'd recommend stainless over aluminum. Why? Well, stainless can and will corrode over time, esp if you are cooking salty/acidic stuff. Plus there is the concern of aluminum contamination of food potentially causing brain plaques of Alzheimers. AFAIK, there's no definite proof this occurs, but it can't hurt to be safe. However for a very large (like 16 qt) pressure cooker, aluminum makes sense from a weight perspective, as well as the fact that unless a jar breaks in process, there won't be salt/acid corrosion of the aluminum.

I seem to collect pressure cookers here. Not sure why. However... the list...

First up is the 6 qt Presto stainless that came with the house. From the looks of it, with the fake wood grain on the handle, it's from the 70's. then I picked up a 12 qt aluminum Magic cooker at a thrift shop, clearly used for canning. I wound up polishing the lid and looking around for a replacement gasket. But I never got to the point of using it for canning back yard produce. As I recall it's still sort of in pieces needing further polishing. And yes, it shows signs of internal corrosion which I don't like.

Then I got an 6 qt electric Cuisinart from Costco. I used it a bit for stuff like artichokes, but wasn't particularly impressed vs. just non-pressure stovetop. However got it out recently to cook up some brown rice and liked the results.

At some point I picked up a Tramontina brand 8 qt stainless stovetop pc. It's nicely made, although the extra capacity is from height not width. Haven't used it yet, but it seems simple enough: two settings for pressure ("1" and "2"), a manual handle lock, induction ready.

Then there's the 8 qt Power Pressure Cooker XL, which I got because I wanted to use it for stuff like roasts. I like the size. I don't like the limited controls, which are all menu selections and don't allow for enough flexibility in time selection. All the menu options other than "canning" are low pressure (7lb) and you can't go over or under what the menu selection dictates. So to cook brown rice for more than 25 minutes I had to select the "Beans" option which allowed longer times. There is one "high" pressure selection (12 lb), called "canning", where it seems like there's more flexibility in setting times. The "cookbook" that came with it gives wildly optimistic cooking times, way too short IMHO. I have made several batches of brown rice in it, as well as various pot roasts and lamb, with mixed results. It's well constructed but hobbled by the restrictive menu buttons, which mostly don't allow long enough cook times.

Also have a new 16 qt Mirro pressure canner. Aluminum. This is the real deal. When I retire and get the garden into high gear, I figure this will be used. But not yet.

Currently my goto pc is the Cuisinart. It's got enough capacity and is easy to use. Like the Power XL, sometimes you gotta give it a shake once it starts boiling to activate the pressure lock mechanism. After that, all is good enough. Unlike the XL, the menu that comes with it recommends the high (12 lb) setting for most recipes, which is refreshing.






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