Under Pressure: March 2016 – Electric Pressure Cooking Recipes and Revelations!

March 19 PC Class

You’ve heard me rave about my favorite old-turned-new kitchen appliance: the electric pressure cooker! But did you know that every month I teach at least one pressure cooking class, sometimes more? And they almost always sell out! So if you’re looking for a way to maximize your time in the kitchen you can check out my events page to sign up for the next class.

This month in the Sweet Kitchen at Sweet! Baking Supply in Topeka, we had a great turnout and a great class! Our menu included Awesome Applesauce (just 5 minutes and no peeling!!), Ham and Bean Soup, Pot Stickers, Mushroom Risotto, and Cheesecake….all totally do-able and delish! And we had a special guest, George (Hopper), tell us how he makes homemade beef broth in his R2D2 and why it’s such a good thing for all of us.

Enjoy all recipes from the March class below and click here to sign up for the next class on April 19th!

Awesome Applesauce

Awesome Applesauce in the Pressure Cooker!

8 apples, quartered and seeds removed (I like to use a blend of Granny Smith and Jonathon and I leave my peelings on)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup water
1/3 – 1/2 cup granulated sugar (or sub apple juice or cider for the water and reduce amount of sugar used)
1-2 tsp. vanilla extract

Place water into pressure cooker pot, then add cinnamon, sugar, and apples. Lock lid into place and choose 5 minutes on high pressure. When timer goes off, use a quick release to release all steam from chamber. Remove lid and use an immersion blender to blend until smooth. (If you don’t have an immersion blender, a food processor works great too. Or, if you don’t have either of those tools, peel your apples before cooking them and you can use a potato masher on your cooked apples – works great if there’s no peelings involved!) When applesauce has cooled, stir in vanilla.

Ham and Bean Soup

Ham and Bean Soup

1 ham bone with meat from whole ham (or substitute ham hocks)
6-8 cups water
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 bay leaf
1 lb. dry white beans, I used Great Northern
4 carrots, diced
1 large yellow onion, diced
4 stalks celery, diced
1 tsp. dried tarragon, or substitute 1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup heavy cream

Place ham bone with meat, water, bay leaf, oil and beans into pressure cooker pot, making sure pot isn’t over filled (see your manual); lock lid into place and choose high pressure. Set timer for 25 minutes. When timer goes off, use natural pressure release.

Meanwhile, in a large sauté pan over medium high heat, sauté carrots, onions, and celery with tarragon in a bit of oil until softened; season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove ham bone and bay leaf from pressure cooker pot, removing any meat that is still attached to bone and adding it back into the broth and beans in the pot. Add sautéed veggies to pot and adjust seasonings to taste. Stir in cream and serve.

PC Potstickers

PC Potsickers¼ small head Napa cabbage, finely chopped
½ tsp. kosher salt
1/3 lb. ground pork
1 Tbs. freshly grated ginger root
1 small carrot, shredded
2 scallions, chopped, both green and white parts
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbs. soy sauce
2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
½ egg, lightly beaten
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
30 pot sticker wrappers (may substitute won ton wrappers if those are all you can find)
canola oil

In a large mixing bowl, combine cabbage and ½ tsp. kosher salt; set aside for 30 minutes.  At the end of that time, transfer cabbage to a cheesecloth and twist to wring out as much water as possible.  Wipe bowl clean, then return cabbage to bowl and add pork, ginger, carrots, scallions and garlic, stirring to combine.  In a small bowl, combine soy sauce, sesame oil, and egg; add this mixture to pork mixture in large bowl and combine well; season to taste with a bit of kosher salt and pepper.

Set up your work station by laying out a sheet of parchment or foil, a small bowl of water, pork filling, pot sticker wrappers, and a slightly-dampened dish towel or paper towels.  Place one pot sticker wrapper out to work with, keeping the remainder covered at all times with the damp towel while you’re working.  Spoon 1-2 tsp. of prepared pork filling into the center or pot sticker wrapper, then moisten halfway around the edge of the wrapper with a wet finger.  Fold wrapper over the filling to meet the other edge, then seal, using your thumb and forefinger to press wrapper edges together, “pleating” the edge as needed to encase the filling.  Place dumpling seam-side up on a baking sheet and gently press down to flatten bottom.  Cover loosely with slightly-dampened dish towel or paper towels, then repeat the process with remaining filling and wrappers.

Preheat PC pot to browning setting and add a bit of oil to bottom; when oil is nicely hot, add pot stickers, a few at a time, making sure not to crowd them too much, and cook, uncovered, until bottoms are nicely browned, then turn and brown a bit on each side of the dumplings, as well.  Remove dumplings and oil from the pot and add wire rack or silicone steamer rack to bottom of pot, along with ½ cup water.  Place browned dumplings onto rack, add PC lid and lock into place; set timer for 2 minutes on high pressure.  When timer goes off, carefully remove dumplings and serve at once, with dipping sauce (recipe follows).

Dumpling Dipping Sauce
½ cup rice wine vinegar, 1 Tbs. soy sauce, 1 ½ tsp. sesame oil, ½ tsp. red pepper flakes
cilantro, chopped
Combine all ingredients to make dipping sauce.

Chocolate Toffee Pressure Cooker Cheesecake

PC Cheesecake

You’ll need a 7-inch springform pan in order to cook a cheesecake in a 6 quart pressure cooker – anything larger won’t fit down inside the pressure cooker pot. (And apparently a 7-inch springform pan isn’t a mainstream size, so visit your favorite culinary store to locate one. Keep it out of the dishwasher and it will last a long, long time. J I think Sweet Baking Supply is carrying these, btw!)

Crust
½ cup crushed chocolate graham crackers or graham cracker cookies
4 Tbs. butter, melted
2 Tbs. granulated sugar

Filling
12 oz. cream cheese, must be room temperature before creating the filling (Please note!: DO NOT SOFTEN CREAM CHEESE IN THE MICROWAVE! If cream cheese is softened in microwave instead of naturally coming to room temperature on the cupboard, you will be hugely disappointed with “gritty” cheesecake texture!! #lessonlearned #thehardway #sosad)

2/3 cup granulated sugar
¼ cup heavy cream
¼ cup sour cream
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbs. all purpose flour
2 eggs, room temperature
1 egg yolk, room temperature

Topping
½ cup shredded toasted coconut
12-14 caramels, unwrapped
3-4 Tbs. heavy cream
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks or chips
½ cup chopped Tonja’s Toffee

To make aluminum sling for this process:  fold a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil (approx. 18” in length) into thirds lengthwise

Coat the springform pan with non-stick baking spray. In a small bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs with the sugar and melted butter; spread this mixture evenly across the bottom and a bit up the sides of the prepared springform pan, pressing it out evenly and firmly.

In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar at medium speed until smooth; add cream, sour cream, vanilla, and flour. Beat in eggs and egg yolk, one at a time, mixing batter a bit in between each one, taking care not to over mix. Pour batter into springform pan over prepared crust; cover pan with aluminum foil.

Pour 1 cup water into pot of pressure cooker, then add trivet to bottom. Carefully center the filled cheesecake pan onto a foil sling* and slowly lower it into the pressure cooker pot. Fold sling ends down so foil doesn’t interfere with securing the lid. Lock pressure cooker lid in place. Choose high pressure setting and set timer for 35 minutes. When beep sounds, turn off pressure cooker; use a natural release for 10 minutes, then a quick pressure release to let any remaining steam in the cooker escape. Carefully remove lid and lift cheesecake out of pot, using the foil sling. Check to see if cheesecake is fairly set in the center; if not, return cheesecake to pressure cooker pot and cook an additional 5 minutes on high setting, doing a quick pressure release at the end of the cook time.

Remove the springform pan to a wire rack to cool; remove aluminum foil. When cheesecake has cooled, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6-8 hours.

When cheesecake is chilled, prepare toppings by placing caramels and cream in a small bowl and microwaving on high in 30 second intervals until caramels are melted, stirring in between until mixture is smooth. When caramel mixture has cooled slightly, add toasted coconut and carefully spread over the top of cheesecake. Melt chocolate in a glass bowl on 50% power in 30 second intervals, stirring in between each one until chocolate is melted and smooth; pour chocolate into a quart bag, snipping off one corner of the bag. Drizzle melted chocolate over the caramel coconut mixture and down the sides of the cheesecake, if desired. Top cheesecake with chopped toffee. To serve, slice cheesecake into 12-16 pieces, depending on your guests.

KitchenSmack: 1. Love R2D2 for making cheesecake. 2. A foil sling works like a charm for lowering the cheesecake into R2D2. 3. One more use for dental floss – loosening the cheesecake off the surface of the springform pan bottom.

Easy-Peasy, Hurry-Up-And-Feed-Me Mushroom Risotto

2 Tbs. unsalted butter
1 small red onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 ½ cups Arborio rice
2 cups sliced baby bella mushrooms
½ cup dry white wine
3 ½ cups chicken or vegetable broth
2/3 cup freshly shredded Parmesan or Romano cheese
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Choose browning setting on PC and add butter.  When butter is hot and a bit sizzly, add onions and sauté for 3-4 minutes, or until onions are softened and translucent; add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds longer. Add mushrooms to pot and allow to cook until they are softened and all moisture has cooked out, approx. 3-4 minutes.  Add the rice, stirring into mushroom mixture, then pour in wine and allow mixture to cook down slightly. Pour in broth all at once.  Lock PC lid into place and set for 7 minutes on High Pressure setting.  When timer goes off, use a quick release and remove PC lid.  Give mixture a gentle stir, then top with cheese and serve at once.

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