You may have read the title and thought this might be about work and stress… but, no, it’s not about the pressure cooker at work, it’s about cooking!
If you are trying to save time cooking (which is an essential part of cooking as a student or resident) you should really think about buying a pressure cooker. This is a foreign cooking appliance to most people, but it is an incredible time saver. Do not listen to your mother/grandmother/aunt who says they blow up… they don’t! I use mine more or less weekly to make garbanzo beans. Buy dry garbanzo beans (which are really cheap), soak them for 4-8 hours and cook them with a little spice (or not) for 12 minutes on the second ring. (You can skip the soaking and cook for about 15 minutes instead) They make a great snack (instead of peanuts) right out of the refrigerator. Another really good use for pressure cookers is to make stock. When you peel carrots, cut the ends off onions, etc just throw the pieces into a bag in the freezer. Ditto for leftover bones and bits from fish, chicken, beef (if you want a meat stock). When the bag is full, put the frozen bits in the pressure cooker with water and cook for 20-25 minutes. This saves a lot of money and tastes tons better than store bought stock/broth.
Here’s a list of other things you can cook in a pressure cooker
- A whole chicken in 15 minutes
- Beans (from dried) in 5-10 minutes
- Artichokes in 10 minutes
- Potatoes in 5-10 minutes
Although the classic pressure cooker is still an amazing and wonderful kitchen tool, it has been a little eclipsed recently by the Instant-Pot. This is now top of my list for gifts for medical students and residents. It is a combination pressure cooker, rice cooker, slow cooker….and more.