First attempt at induction cooking & pressure cooking
My Fagor pressure cooker set arrived yesterday - thanks to Arley for recommending that - it was the perfect addition to my induction burner, and I got to try them both out last night. Perhaps there was too much new for me to get used to at once - I was a bit put off by the controls on the induction burner because I had no idea exactly what the numbers meant, and I really could not relate the temperature settings to a gas burner either, and so it just became an experiment to see what would work.
My first dish was pinto beans, and I was excited to learn that I would be able to cook beans in 10 minutes in the pressure cooker! That wasn't exactly true because they had to be soaked first (I used the quick soak method), then put in the pan with new water, brought up to temperature and then cooked at a lowered temperature for 10 minutes with the pressure on. Next they had to rest for 10-15 minutes with the pressure on and the heat off, and then they were supposed to be ready. I left them with the pressure on with no heat for 30 minutes, and that may have been too long, but they were definitely cooked. I started the induction burner on the "10" setting (the highest) to get the pan started, and then when I turned it down, I switched to cooking temp instead of abstract numbers and chose between 250 and 280 degrees. When I set it to 250, the steam stopped making noise, and when I set it back to 280, the steam made a lot of noise, but I left it at 280, and it seemed to work okay.
Fortunately, the steamer came with very good instructions for cooking beans, but it also came with a DVD with some very bad recipes. However, the cookbook that came with it has very good recipes, and I will be using some of those.
I think I am more excited about the pressure cooker than I am about the induction burner, but they seem to make a really good combination, and now I have extra stovetop space. My next induction experiment will be boiling water for pasta, and I have some lasagna noodles for that. I do not plan to use my pressure cooker on my gas burners because it fits so perfectly on the induction burner, and I really like them in combination. I like the size of the pressure cooker pans as well, and the large one will be perfect for boiling the water for pasta.
I had a tragic accident while cooking the beans that got me very depressed, however. While I was getting the four cup measuring cup out of the cupboard (and I hardly ever use this measuring cup), I knocked an antique etched glass cream pitcher out of the cabinet. This cream pitcher had belonged to my great grandparents in Alsace, and they brought it with them to Texas when they immigrated. My mother gave it to me because she knew how much I liked it, but now it is shattered into dozens of pieces. I still have the glass sugar bowl, however.