Cookery is an art of preparing and making food, attributed by fuels, ingredients, cooking appliance and obviously cooking techniques of the cook. All of these impacting factors vary across areas to areas and times to times. Cooking has taken its evolution from regular boiling of raw ingredients to cooked food to ranges of steaming, roasting, grilling, baking, and frying. Taking its turn, kitchen appliance has accordingly been developed in the manner for quicker, less oil and more nutrient to even vegetarian meals.
More vegetable, less fat and cholesterol meals have promisingly emerged in all homes. Surprisingly, not cooked by the recipes of adding more vegetables and cutting down meat and oil fried food but the application of advanced cooking techniques: air/water pressure cooking, in which a pressure cooker is a notable pattern. Yet, the consumption demand continues to be more and more than that while home-made canned food with home pressure canner is on the rise for the best favorite recipes and best selling kitchenware respectively.
What does a pressure cooker look like?
A pressure cooker is a closely covered pot applying steam of high pressure to cook food in a short fraction of time. A pressure cooked food turns out to be tender quickly no matter how hard it could be. A pressure cooker comes in 2 types: electric and traditional cooker. An electric pressure cooker run though electricity plugged in with digital time setting and control meanwhile a traditional pressure cooker looks like a normal pot needed regular electric or gas stove to heat it up to get cooked. It is more practical in case of power off compared to the electric one.
It is noted that some but not almost all pressure cookers manage to can food. In the course of canning, a pressure cooker succeeds in reaching sufficient temperature to can food for preserving. That’s why it overweighs traditional cooker or water bath canning method but still not yet the best canned food maker in regards of a pressure canner.
How pressure canners can food?
A pressure canner is a kitchen appliance useful for canning filled food jars, particularly low-acid food such as vegetables, bean, chicken and meats. The invention of pressure canner has derived from traditional canning method of water bath. Nevertheless, the former is just disposed to can food to the temperature of normal boiling while the latter produces extra heat to can food for better preservation to store in a longer time. Pressure canned food is out of bacteria thanks to reaching of high required heat temperature.
Are they similar?
Yes. To certain extend of utilizing steam to pressure-cook food and giving out the capacity of food canning. They do share some common advantages of:
– Pressure cooked or canned food is tasty and more nutrient. High pressure in short period of time lets all unnecessary liquids and substances in food go away leaving the most nutrients, vitamins or minerals of the food, presented in color and flavor of the cooked food. It is reported that the reduction in time cooking witnesses 70% down.
– Pressure cooker and canner, separately or 2 in 1 appliance, are both energy saving. One pressure cooker or canner can consume less energy than 3 or 4 regular pots on accounts of its quick cooking operation.
– Time for cooking is significantly gone down which is ideal for a quick lunch or dinner made in a hurry completed in several minutes by virtue of a simple recipe of plain cutting and throwing mixed ingredients and no requirement for food flipping and stirring and cook-watching.
– Pressure cooking or canning limits less smoke and heat out of the space in the kitchen. It is going to cool the kitchen atmosphere and environment as heat and steam are well-travelled internally in the pressure cooker or canner only.
– A pressure cooker or canner is made of stainless steel and non stick base and layer for the sake of no grease and mess, less wear and tear and is addressed for dishwashing. Additionally, only one pot is needed for washing after the pressure cooking or canning finishes.
– Pressure cooking or canning is safe owing to its secured lid and automatic setting and temperature control. It avoids steam, oil or water over-spoiling, finger and skin burn of touch.
What makes a pressure cooker different from a pressure canner?
It is apparently clear that the pressure cooker can cook and can food while a pressure canner is able to can food only. This difference comes from the discrepancy in size and capacity. Normally, a pressure canner is larger than a pressure cooker. The size is of utmost importance as the larger the canner is, the longer it will take to heat up and cool down. It directly ensures the better quality of the canned food afterwards. The food may be in the case of being under-cooked if the time to heat up and cool down is too short, more specifically because:
– The large canner can contain more water which will take longer time to be heated up and cooled down.
– The larger canner can have more metal, i.e., more thicker, hence expanding the time to heat up and cool down.
Smart use of pressure cooker and pressure canner in daily home cooking
If a pressure canner is extremely compulsory for food canning, a pressure cooker is highly recommended if:
– You would like to prepare food quick and fast: Fast food preparing is the biggest advantage of pressure cooker. It takes home cooks less time for preparation and cooking, imagining a piece of meat and pile of mixed vegetables appearing delicious and juicy soup for nutrient dinner after 30 minutes. Such wonderful thing is superior to the others.
– You are vegetarian. Pressure cooker is functional for vegetable steaming, especially bean.
– You incur cooking in some severe weather and condition which is hard to get to high heat temperature in short time by normal cooker.
– You would like to can low acid food. However, it is cautions that small pressure cooker is not suggested for canning. A safe and good food canning must meet the requirement of 4 quart jars measurement. An ordinary pressure cooker fails to contain such space for filled jars to be canned and to maintain adequate time for heating up and cooling down. Shortage of food canning timer will increase the existence of harmful bacteria and micro-organic substance in completed canned food. It makes the food unsafe to serve and ruins quickly.
Overall, it is time to start getting used to using pressure cooker or canner at home if you are brand-new users. Not only are the advantageous points of these advanced cooking technology, but the convenience and comfort they are going to bring are too top-notch to give up.