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Old 05-13-2013, 03:32 AM   #1
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Advice re: minimum liquid level for pressure cooker?

Hello,

Because I'm a student I bought a pressure cooker to reduce costs. However, the instruction booklet of this 6 liter electric pressure tells me I need 5 cups of liquid in the pot, and this has become a problem i.e using 2 cups and 3 cups of water would cost $5 per meal and up to $10 in other recipes.

My question: Can I use less liquid then the pressure cooker recommends?

It should also be noted: That the multi cooker has a valve which can be opened when using the slow cooker setting (multiple settings) and requires a cup of liquid. So I was also wondering if by opening the valve for pressure cooking would this change the liquid requirement and if so would this change the cooking of the food?

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Old 05-13-2013, 05:29 AM   #2
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I have little experience with newer models of pressure cookers. I think it would be best to follow the manufacturer's recommendations. To do otherwise may result in serious consequences. We all saw that a pressure cooker can produce very powerful explosions when used improperly. Granted, the pressure cookers used in the Boston bombing were not being used for cooking but equally dangerous pressures can build up in them if used improperly. I also believe that leaving the valve open would be counter productive to the whole concept of pressure cooking.
Perhaps someone else with more experience will pop in with better advice.
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:21 AM   #3
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3 cups of water cost $5?
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:37 AM   #4
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Where do you live that 5 cups of water costs $10???
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Old 05-13-2013, 09:39 AM   #5
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When it comes to pressure cooking, ALWAYS follow the manufacturers cooking instructions.
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Old 05-13-2013, 10:52 PM   #6
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3 cups of water cost $5?
Nope but cheap wine costs me $5 per 2 cups.
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Old 05-13-2013, 10:54 PM   #7
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Where do you live that 5 cups of water costs $10???
I said meant recpies not using water and wine I.e bbq sacue ribs.
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Old 05-14-2013, 07:32 AM   #8
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You shouldn't be using 5 cups of BBQ sauce in a pressure cooker.

I think you might be misunderstanding how to cook with it.

Pressure cookers don't necessarily reduce cost. They reduce cooking time.
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Old 05-14-2013, 08:17 AM   #9
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You shouldn't be using 5 cups of BBQ sauce in a pressure cooker.

I think you might be misunderstanding how to cook with it.

Pressure cookers don't necessarily reduce cost. They reduce cooking time.
I agree that you are misreading the directions. Look at them again. My pressure cooker states that you can not fill above 2/3s full, as froth from the intermal boiling liquid may clog teh steam release channels. Many recipes call for a cup or less of water, and a steamer, or pan insert to hold the food, i.e. making cakes, dumplings, steamed veggies, etc. You don't want the food directly in the cooking liquid, but rather use the steam, heat, and pressure to cook the food.

To little liquid will simply cause the food to burn to the pan, not cause the pan to explode. Too much liquid can defeat the safety features of the pressure cooker.

Think about what goes on inside the PC. It's designed to release pressure when it gets to between 10 to 15 lbs. internal pressure, depending on the model you have. It will do that unless it is clogged, or the valves are stopped up. Even then, there is a safety release that will give before explosive pressures are attained within the cooking vessel.

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Old 05-14-2013, 09:57 AM   #10
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Also, you can vary the liquids you use. Instead of wine, you can use chicken or beef broth, depending on the recipe. "Better than Bouillon" is a product where you add 1 cup of water to a tsp. of beef or chicken broth concentrate. It's more cost-effective than buying stock in a box. Or you can use the pressure cooker to make your own stock.

But yes, you are probably using too much liquid.
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Old 05-15-2013, 04:16 AM   #11
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I agree that you are misreading the directions. Look at them again. My pressure cooker states that you can not fill above 2/3s full, as froth from the intermal boiling liquid may clog teh steam release channels.
Here is the user manual for my pressure cooker or multi-cooker http://goo.gl/e5ZqP. If you go to page that has the header "assembling instructions" you can see that the mini level for the pressure cooker is 1/5 of 6 liters which is 5 cups (Dam pressure cooker). But do you still think it's safe to cook with less?
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Old 05-15-2013, 05:26 AM   #12
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Almost everyfood has moisture in it that is released when cooking, no matter what the method. It would seem to me that is something that you need to consider. If you are going to be adding onions that are high in moisture, it will raise the level of liquid. As will any food. Even meat.
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Old 05-15-2013, 07:00 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by BJplusMilo21 View Post
Here is the user manual for my pressure cooker or multi-cooker http://goo.gl/e5ZqP. If you go to page that has the header "assembling instructions" you can see that the mini level for the pressure cooker is 1/5 of 6 liters which is 5 cups (Dam pressure cooker). But do you still think it's safe to cook with less?
My interpretation of that passage is the minimum of all ingredients must be 1/5 (5 cups) of the total volume not just the liquid. I have a similar cooker and did a corned beef with only 1 cup of liquid, it turned out spectacular. Did any recipes come with your cooker? If so, read them to find the allowable amounts and become familiar with what is needed in the cooker.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:09 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by PrincessFiona60 View Post
My interpretation of that passage is the minimum of all ingredients must be 1/5 (5 cups) of the total volume not just the liquid. I have a similar cooker and did a corned beef with only 1 cup of liquid, it turned out spectacular. Did any recipes come with your cooker? If so, read them to find the allowable amounts and become familiar with what is needed in the cooker.

I agree.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:57 AM   #15
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There are recipes at the very end. For the slow cooker, ricer, steamer and the P.C.
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Old 05-15-2013, 11:27 AM   #16
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My interpretation of that passage is the minimum of all ingredients must be 1/5 (5 cups) of the total volume not just the liquid.
I agree with you, but the pressure cooker needs to have some liquid to work properly. If not, you are using the pressure cooker as a pan and then you risk to burn the food.

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Old 05-15-2013, 02:12 PM   #17
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I agree with you, but the pressure cooker needs to have some liquid to work properly. If not, you are using the pressure cooker as a pan and then you risk to burn the food.

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Agreed. As was previously stated, 2 cups of liquid, depending on the size of the p.c. may be all you can use in some recipes. in others, especially where longer cooking times are required, you will need more to prevent all of the water from being lost as steam, and then burning the food. It all depends on what you are trying to do with the pressure cooker.

Several weeks back, I made flan in my P.C. and only used a cup and a half of water, as I didn't want any water entering the flan. It worked very well.

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Old 05-15-2013, 07:50 PM   #18
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I agree with you, but the pressure cooker needs to have some liquid to work properly. If not, you are using the pressure cooker as a pan and then you risk to burn the food.

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I didn't say don't use liquid. Been using pressure cookers for 40 years, I would never not add liquid. The 1/5 is the minimum of all ingredients, not just the liquid.
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Old 05-16-2013, 04:23 AM   #19
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I didn't say don't use liquid. Been using pressure cookers for 40 years, I would never not add liquid. The 1/5 is the minimum of all ingredients, not just the liquid.
The reason for saying 5 cups is due to my food (being a single person) not reaching 1/5 and thus I'm forced to use 5 cups.
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Old 05-16-2013, 07:20 AM   #20
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The reason for saying 5 cups is due to my food (being a single person) not reaching 1/5 and thus I'm forced to use 5 cups.
Then you need to be making planned leftovers that you can change into a different meal the next day or freeze the excess. There's two of us and it makes meals for two days at minimum levels.
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