Thursday, March 31, 2011


Recently, Blue Shoe Farms posted about pressure cookers and even took a class about them so she'd be able to use it properly. This gave me plenty of material to write about my recent experiences concerning the same, even though I'm trying not to sound like a critic on electrical appliances and my buying experiences which I've found myself doing in my recent blogs. To begin with, watching one of the TV shopping shows, I saw an Elite 13 function electrical pressure cooker being demonstrated. It was supposed to be an 8 qt. one and since my slow cooker is 7 qts. I believed this pressure cooker would be large enough. I saw how the demonstrator on TV pulled out supposedly a five pound lobster, three pounds of crab legs and various clams and mussels. He also poured out from another pressure cooker a supposedly 75 chicken wings. He also said you can can up to six canning jars in it. I've seen these advertised before when Woolfgang Puck was on the show, but it was too small. So I did research on pressure cookers on line. People were saying that the electrical pressure cookers only got up to 12-13 psi, whereas manual ones you have to put on the stove top got up to 15 psi which you need for canning. I believed the guy on TV demonstrating the Elite pressure cooker and ordered one. It really looked large enough and comparing it to my slow cooker, being automatic (just set it to what you're cooking and forget it) it seemed just what I was looking for. It arrived on my doorstep and I quickly opened the box, first reading the directions that came with it, along with a few recipes that also were in the booklet. After reading everything to be aware of, which in itself was scary, I took out the beautiful looking and very large pressure cooker, I thought. The outside where the actual cooking pan was placed was truly beautiful and the digital settings were impressive. However, the inside pan where you actually put the food was soooooo small, I couldn't believe it. This was not eight quarts. I thought about it for a few days as to whether I should venture into trying to use it. I contemplated my bellybutton and after a few days took the adopted appliance down to UPS to be returned to its owner company. Since I purchased it from HSN and returned it within 30 days, I got a full refund, but low and behold, I got an e-mail saying they were going to charge me $9.00 for processing fees. "Wait a minute," I said. I was under the impression that if you purchased anything from the shopping networks they would guarantee that if you didn't for any reason disliked it and you returned it within 30 days, you would get a full refund. I quickly called HSN, and explained how the man who demonstrated the appliance had misrepresented the product, the lady refunded also my $9.00 processing fee. I had purchased a few things from the shopping networks, my cell phone, for instance. It too was a really great deal and still have never seen another deal like this in the stores or on TV. I have been truly happy with them concerning any questions I might have on the product ordered. I would not hesitate to order anything from them if you find a great deal you couldn't find anywhere else. They recently advertised a Gateway computer with a quad core processor at a really great price that I couldn't find in the stores. I was ready to order one, since, as you know, my four year old computer is sooooo slow now that I guess it's telling me I need a new computer. But I held back thinking I didn't want to buy on impulse. It was also stated on TV that there were hundreds of pressure cooker recipes on line that could be used because of the very few recipes that were enclosed with the instruction booklet. So when I went on line to get some, most, if not all, were for manual pressure cookers you use on the stovetop. When I was doing my research on line, I found a Presto pressure cooker, eight quart which got really high ratings, but after I learned all you had to do to use it, and when I saw this large one on TV, I ordered the one on TV. So that's my experience on pressure cookers. Perhaps I should do what Blue Shoe Farm did and take a class on how to use a manual pressure cooker. She said you couldn't use a pressure cooker on the new flat top range tops, but she's going to do it anyways. I've also heard that those flat top ranges should not be used with iron cooking pans. The flat tops also scratch a lot, which I've seen over the few years they'd been on the market. So, if you want to cook healthier in a pressure cooker, do your research if you want to go through all of the rigamarole of cooking like this. I just saw Wolfgang Puck demonstrating one of his new appliances that locks the top, like a pressure cooker, but also you can steam, braise, bake and cook in other ways, just like a pressure cooker and without all of the rigamarole. Oh yea, another thing about the man on TV demonstrating his pressure cooker. He said it only, on average, takes about a half hour or less to cook anything. Well, yea, after you have to wait about 20 minutes to raise the pressure inside. That's another thing they don't tell you on TV and you find out when you read the directions that come with the appliance. All in all, my curiosity has risen to the point of finding out where a class is at which will give me the real "how to use" a pressure cooker.

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