Saturday, July 26, 2014

The Instant Pot

Last Christmas my friend Betsy got a new kitchen work horse: the Instant Pot.  She told me how great it was and I was intrigued, but I really had no need for another kitchen appliance.  Then, after doing a deep clean on my crock-pot (and apparently getting water behind the electronic panel), it died on Easter Sunday with the ham already in it!  I was less than pleased.  Luckily I have the kind of Crockpot that has a removable stoneware crock and I was able to save Easter dinner in the oven.

Now I had my chance!  I had a genuine reason to shop for a new kitchen gadget and the Instant Pot was at the top of my list.  It wasn't cheap, but it was more than a slow cooker, it was a pressure cooker, rice cooker and yogurt maker.  Normally I say appliances that try to do many things can only do them poorly, but so far my Instant Pot 7-in-1 has yet to disappoint.  I have made many recipes with this appliance and I even removed my food processor from the counter top to make room for this pot to stay out all the time.

Here are just a few things I like about the Instant Pot.  It:
  • allows me to make homemade yogurt and coconut yogurt cheaply and with minimal effort
  • shortens cooking time for most dinner entrees by 50% or more
  • as a nice display with self-explanatory buttons
  • has wonderful side slots that hold the lid for you while you saute or for serving
  • has an easy to clean, dishwasher safe stainless steel pot
  • makes the perfect brown rice in less than 45 minutes
  • turns two-pot slow cooker meals into 1-pot meals with the built-in saute feature 
  • comes with a recipe book that helps to introduce you to pressure cooking as well as yogurt making
  • cooks greens in a way that I actually like them! 
Drawbacks are few.  One of the drawbacks is that you have to be careful and not add any ingredients that might scorch before you use the pressure cooker.  Many recipes add flour to the pot before cooking, but the flour will scorch and prevent the cooker from functioning properly.  If this happens you will get a "Ovht" error and the pot will shut off.  Once, I had to remove an entire (still raw) chicken from the pot and clean the liner before returning the chicken and the pot to the cooker.  Now that I know I won't make that mistake again, and hopefully by reading this review you won't make it either!

Betsy has invited me to post recipe reviews for this pressure cooker over on her fulltummies page, so in the next few weeks or so you can look for full recipes there.  

Happy cooking!

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