Using a pressure cooker is one of the best methods of cooking meat. There are many reasons to sing the praises of the pressure cooker when it comes to cooking meat, but we will just mention a few:
1) Pressure cookers enhance your cooking because they lock in the moisture of meat while releasing its natural complex flavors. There is no danger of your favorite cut of meat drying out and leaving a disappointing taste in your mouth.
2) Using a pressure cooker retains higher nutrition value than other methods of cooking, including boiling and steaming.
3) Pressure cookers are fast. Using a pressure cooker can cut cooking time by half, saving you precious time, energy and money in the process.
How to use a pressure cooker for meat?
If you love meat and enjoy cooking, it is essential to know how to use a pressure cooker for meat. We’ve prepared this simple guide to help you master the art yourself.
1. Prepare the meat
The first step is to prepare your cut of meat. Always defrost or thaw your meat to room temperature before you start cooking. Depending on your cut of meat, you may need to remove excess fat and connective tissues. It’s a good idea to ask your butcher to do this beforehand. But if you need to do it yourself, keep in mind that you should cut against the grain: the meat will be less sinewy and more tender.
One of the secrets to tender meat is the right marinade. Marinades that contain salt, acids such as lemon or lime, or fruit enzymes such as papaya, pineapple, kiwi and Asian pear, can help tenderize meat. Remember not to marinate for too long. Around 30 minutes to 2 hours is just right.
3. Brown the meat
Always brown your meat before cooking. Sear your meat on all sides in a pan before throwing it into the pressure cooker. This will add extra flavor and texture. It’s a good idea to deglaze your pan with broth or wine, which you can later pour into the pressure cooker. You can also set your pressure cooker to saute mode to brown the meat, before setting the cooker to pressure mode.
4. Add water to pressure cooker
Add water to your pressure cooker, but not too much. The amount of water will depend on how much meat you are using and the size of the cut, but generally it’s good to start with around 1-1.5 cups. Pressure cookers retain and accumulate liquid and so require less water than traditional cookware.
5. Cook on high heat, the reduce to low heat
Turn your pressure cooker on high heat and allow your meat to cook for around 15-20 minutes. The exact timing depends on the type of meat and size of the cut. If you are using a stovetop pressure cooker, reduce the heat after 10 minutes and allow to simmer. If you are using an electric Best Pressure Cooker, it will adjust the heat automatically.
6. Add some fresh herbs
Adding fresh herbs to your meat will accentuate the flavor of your meat. Try thyme, sage or bay leaves for beef, rosemary with lamb, marjoram or tarragon for chicken. Or be adventurous and try unique combinations. You can throw the entire herb (leaves, stem and all) into your pressure cooker and let it work its magic on the meat.
7. Turn off heat and allow natural release
Turn off the heat, and leave your meat in the pressure cooker for 10 minutes to allow natural release. This will let the high temperature of the meat cool down slowly and prevent the meat’s juice from evaporating and disappearing before it reaches the table.
With a little practice, you’ll master the art of how use a pressure cooker for meat in no time.
So, make a visit soon to your local butcher, buy the freshest cut of your favourite meat, and try out your new culinary skills!