Thursday, February 5, 2015

Using a Pressure Cooker to Make Chicken Stock

My mother recently gave me a pressure cooker that she had for years and never used.  I expressed an interest in it, when she mentioned she never used it, and plus a family member had purchased for her a new electric pressure cooker, and she certainly didn't need two.  So, I gladly accepted the pressure cooker, and have set out to put it to good use!  I remember my Mom used a pressure cooker a lot while we were growing up.  Many, many meals I remember were prepared in the old style pressure cooker with the rocking knob.  Since it is just Mom & Dad at home now, Mom doesn't prepare big meals like she used to, and so the newer pressure cooker she had invested in a few years ago began to gather dust.

But... since finding a new home with me, I have really enjoyed having this pressure cooker, and I wanted to share my experiences with you today.



Mom gave me an older model T-Fal Speedy-Chef Express Cooker that has a smart timer on it.  What this means is that after I turn the heat on, and I know how long I want to cook to food for, I set the timer for the amount of time I want the food to cook.  Then the smart timer turns itself on when the pressure/heat has reached the correct level.  Then I just have to turn the heat down to low, as the pressure cooker will maintain the heat/pressure on its own, and wait until the timer goes off, at which time I shut the burner off, and let the pressure cooker cool down, and release steam after several minutes of cooling.  This pressure cooker has several built-in mechanisms for safety, and so you never have to work about the pressure cooker exploding on you.  It simply will not release the lid until pressure has decreased and is safe to do so.


There are four different pressure settings on this model of pressure cooker.  Two are for cooking which are for vegetables, and meat, and the other two are for quick or slow steam release.  


I cooked the chicken bones with just enough water added to cover the bones, with a little bit of salt and a bay leaf.   Because I wanted to get really rich stock, I pressure cooked the bones for 1 hour.


This is the broth that came out of the pressure cooker - a beautiful thick yellow yummy bone broth! The nice part of this is that you get the benefit of cooking the bones in the pressure cooker much more quickly than in a crock pot or on a stove burner.  Previously, I had made my chicken bone broth on the stove or in the crockpot, which would take up to 24 hours.  Now, I can get the same result in just a little over an hour! Pretty impressive!


Here are the chicken bone "remains" after being pressure cooked.  Because the bones have been pressure cooked and tenderized, I give a bit of these bones every day to my dogs.  They really enjoy this treat!

I have cooked several other things in the pressure cooker, and all have turned out incredibly tender and tasty, as well as cooking within 30 minutes or less.  I have taken a couple of frozen chicken breasts, seasoned them with homemade barbecue sauce, and cooked them for about 20 minutes, and it was the most tender BBQ chicken ever, and done in a short amount of time!

My recipe for homemade BBQ sauce goes something like this (you see the recipe is in my head, and it varies every time, lol!)

About 1 cup of ketchup (without high fructose corn syrup)
1/4 cup turbinado sugar
1 tbsp dry mustard (you can also use regular mustard too)
1 tbsp vinegar (either white vinegar or apple cider)
1 tbsp paprika (smoked paprika if you can find it)
1 tsp garlic powder, or 1 clove minced garlic
Salt & Pepper to taste

I always taste the BBQ sauce before putting it on the meat. Sometimes it needs a bit more sugar or salt. You can experiment to your taste with the sauce.  Another thing that I sometimes add to this sauce is 1 tsp of curry, as this gives it a bit of an exotic "zing".

This BBQ sauce is enough for about 2 chicken breasts, so you can double it, if making it for four breasts.   I serve baked potatoes with the chicken, or oven-fried potatoes, or rice.... just depending on what the "mood" of the day calls for!

Bottom line - this pressure cooker has saved me a lot of time and effort in the kitchen, and I can't wait to keep experimenting with it, and continue to save precious time when cooking for a hungry impatient family!

If you haven't tried to use a pressure cooker, now might be the time to jump on the bandwagon.  With today's busy families, having a pressure cooker in your kitchen will help get food on the table more quickly, and efficiently!

Here are a few websites that you can visit to find more out about pressure cooking:

Hip Pressure Cooking

Pinterest Pressure Cooking Recipes

Food.com Pressure Cooking Recipes

All Recipes.com Pressure Cooking Recipes

I hope this post has been helpful, and maybe will encourage you to dust off your pressure cooker hiding in the back of your kitchen cabinet or maybe even decide to invest in one.  I can assure you they are well worth the $$ you pay to have one!  When you whip out an amazing dinner in 30 minutes or less for your hungry family, they will thank you.  :)

8 comments:

  1. Yum! I LOVE chicken stock!

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  2. Yes, we do too! On these gloomy cold wet days, chicken soup really fits the bill!

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  3. I don't own a pressure cooker, but everyone who has one and uses it, loves it. Your broth looks amazing. We're at the point where your mom and dad are. . .we don't cook big meals either.

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    1. The pressure cooker I have would be perfect even for small meals, it is not big, and so super easy to create amazing meals in just a few minutes with. :)

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  4. Like Nancy, I also don't own a pressure cooker, never have, but I can appreciate all its wonderful techniques of cooking tasty food!

    Thanks for all the info and the recipe for your scrumptious sounding chicken soup!

    Poppy

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    1. I probably never would have gone out and bought a new pressure cooker, but after having this one, I realize how much I have missed through the years in not having one. They make easy quick meals in a short amount of time!

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  5. Oh this has reminded me of our need for a pressure cooker (I am already loving my pressure canner!)! We are on propane so any reduction of use would be a blessing! Thanks for sharing your experience because I am now more excited to get one! :) A quick and tender meal sounds wonderful!! Thanks for your BBQ sauce recipe, I will try that too.

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    1. They really are pretty handy to have. Thanks for stopping by JES - I enjoy all your posts, so well written, and full of great pictures and information!

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