The Joy of Pressure Cooking

I discovered pressure cooking whilst the kitchen was being extended and I had no cooker.  On the little camping stove we usually use for brewing up at the allotment I managed to cook some warming stews and soups, with our produce of course.

I must admit to being terrified of using one to start with, I remember as a child this violent, bubbling, hissing pot, wide eyed waiting for it to explode at any moment.  Thankfully today’s versions are a lot nicer.  I found a few recipes to try out, some successes like dried beans which are so much easier than the soak overnight and boil for hours.  Some need more practise like rice puddings (fun scrapping the bottom of the pan after that one).  Pressure cooking really does take a fraction of the time and meat in particular is so much more tender.

Today we are having pork chops in cider which is a recipe that has come together and perfected for our tastes,  You could put it in a slow cooker, although since I do not cook with one I have no idea how it would come out, but I know lots of people who swear by them. I just didn’t get on with it, perhaps just not organised enough.

So if you want to try my Cider Pork Chops:

  • 3lb pork Chops (fat removed)
  • 3 allotment leeks (or 2 onions sliced or 10 shallots whole)
  • 2 apples or one large (can be dessert or cooking)
  • I can cider (I used Strongbow) 440ml
  • 2 chicken stock cubes in 200ml hot water
  • 2 tablespoons Honey
  • 1 large tablespoon whole grain mustard
  • 3 springs fresh time.

I literally put it all in the pressure cooker, stir as it is heating up.  Put on the lid and bring to pressure (I use 15lbs) and cook for 30mins.  I find the pressure cooker keeps the food warm for quite a while so leave it to cool and unlock.  When we want to eat it I heat it to a boil and more than likely add some cornstarch to thicken it.  The apples turn to mush and just add a wonderful bulk to the sauce.

Serve with mashed potatoes and carrots.  The meat just falls apart, I cannot eat pork any other way now.

We managed to grow 3 large bags of potatoes to store this year.  Rooster have been eaten first as I find they do not store well.  We have worked our way through Cara which is just sprouting a little too much now and went to open the next page which is Sarpo Mira.  Have to say I am impressed with the lack of sprouting although not that impressed to see that something has clearly been having lunch in there.  Not keen to put my hand properly into the bag, job for MAN!


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