There are many among us who have pressure cookers but they don’t remember how to use them. In fact, the majority of housewives around the world still dwell on the world of fears, thinking that their inability could cause an accident.
The fear of pressure cooker accidents has still been felt by many, although modern-day pressure cookers have reduced this problem to almost negligible. Yet, a pressure cooker accident may still happen, and that will probably be because you avoided following the instruction manual for cleaning and maintaining your utensil.
A pressure cooker is just like any other machine in your home, like a computer for instance. You need periodic software upgrades and system cleanings to keep it working. Pressure cookers require proper cleaning every now and then also.
Why Cleaning and Maintaining is Important
There are numerous reasons, including the following:
- You can save repair costs and energy by ensuring that the unit operates properly. An old or damaged gasket, or rim, or pressure valve can cause the steam to leak during cooking, which will eventually result in increased cooking time. If you keep on avoiding these issues, the problem will only get worse and you will eventually have to buy a new pressure cooker.
- At times, stains and discoloration can cause changes in the quality of the material, which affects the quality of food and the cooking time. The food may be undercooked, overcooked, dried or burned. While minor stains can be removed with simple cleaning techniques, major stains remain there, making your pressure cooker ineffective.
- With regular periodic cleaning, you can check each component closely and find the smallest problems as they occur. You will know when to change the valve, gasket or rim of your pressure cooker. In this way, you can avoid the unexpected expense of replacing your pressure cooker.
Here you will learn how to clean and maintain your latest pressure cooker model and avoid serious accidents.
- How To Clean Sticky Food Particles
One of the most common problems faced by pressure cooker users is food sticking on the inside surface, which is quite difficult to remove. The particles are so stubborn that you can’t even remove them with the hardiest of cleaning materials. It makes it quite difficult to use your pressure cooker in the future.
In order to remove such stubborn food particles, the only way is to cook them off. Here’s what you should do:
- Fill the pot with water up to a level that all the food particles are well-submerged.
- Add a small amount of plain white vinegar to the water. A quarter of a cup will do.
- Allow the mixture to heat until it boils. Be sure to boil it uncovered.
- As soon as the boiling point is reached, turn off the heat and add 1-2 teaspoons of baking soda.
- Wait until the entire mixture cools down so that it can stick to your hand.
- Apply some elbow grease to remove the baked-on particles.
- What to Do to Remove Offensive Smells from The Food
Another problem most pressure cooker users deal with is, even after cleaning the appliance well enough, they are not able to remove that offensive odor. This smell, in turn, can affect the taste of the meal, and you may have to call a restaurant for food delivery to serve to your guests.
The real reason behind a bad smell is not because of cooking, but because of the way you store your pressure cooker. You might say that you store your pressure cooker with the lid placed upside down, just like the manual indicates. However, in doing so, you may not be leaving an opening for the fresh air to go inside. As a result, the odor of the past meal will not go away completely.
Store your pressure cooker in such a manner that the lid is placed on top, but askew. This makes a little passage for the air, making it possible for the smell to exit completely before the next meal.
- How To Clean the Overpressure Plug
However, if the problem occurs repeatedly when you pressure cook your food, it’s time to check the plug and wash it thoroughly. There’s no need to add special solutions to wash the plug; just use tap water, or filtered water is even better.
If this cleaning trick fails, your next step should be to call the manufacturer for a replacement. Even if there’s no such problem with your pressure cooker, you should replace the overpressure plug periodically, say once every two years. It will help retain the life of your appliance and keep it operating smoothly and safely.
You can see:
- Don’t Fry Oil in Your Pressure Cooker
Another very important thing in the context of pressure cooker maintenance is the knowledge of the things you can prepare in it. You should also understand the purpose of your appliance.
If you’ve been using it for too long and have misplaced your manual, here’s what you should always remember: food should not be fried in a pressure cooker. You may have thought:
- Instead of buying a deep fryer separately, you should use your pressure cooker and save money, or
- Pressure cookers must be a better and healthier option for frying compared to frying in skillet
Anyhow, these are wrong assumptions. The reason why manufacturers restrict using pressure cookers for frying is, the oil in the pressure cooker can cause serious injuries and skin burns.
If you follow these tips, you can use your pressure cooker for a long time and prepare high quality foods without any trouble. Pressure cookers may have a reputation of being unsafe and technically difficult, but these are just assumptions without proof. With a little bit of care and maintenance, you can save a lot of time and energy, yet still prepare high quality meals for your family.