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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No Pressure Cooking!
I remember the hissing, rattling, frightening pressure cooker we had when I was a child which was used for steamed puddings and ham on occasions so although intrigued I was wary of using pressure cookers again. Recently there's been a lot of talk about the new style modern pressure cookers and how quiet they are and how time saving they can be. I learned via Twitter that...
Published 22 months ago by Ms A Phelan

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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not for the novice user
I bought this as I am a new user of an electric pressure cooker. The book is definitely aimed at users of cooker top pressure cookers and the book is fine if you are using that type of pressure cooker. I feel it also is more appropriate for the experienced pressure cooker user rather than a novice. The book is well illustrated and has some interesting recipes but I would...
Published 16 months ago by Robert, Cleethorpes


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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No Pressure Cooking!, 25 Sep 2012
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This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
I remember the hissing, rattling, frightening pressure cooker we had when I was a child which was used for steamed puddings and ham on occasions so although intrigued I was wary of using pressure cookers again. Recently there's been a lot of talk about the new style modern pressure cookers and how quiet they are and how time saving they can be. I learned via Twitter that this cookbook had been published and decided to purchase a pressure cooker and it at the same time. All I can say is "life changing!". If, like me, you love to eat well, enjoy cooking in general but sometimes find the rush to cook at the end of a busy day stressful or if you're a fan of dried beans but always forget to pre-soak them in time then a pressure cooker is for you. And if you want a cookbook that helps you pull together a great tasting meal in minutes then this is the cookbook for you too.

So far I've cooked 'Quick Chicken Supper for Two', 'One-pot Lentils with Sausages', 'Basque Squid Stew', 'Caponata', followed numerous instructions on cooking chickpeas, vegs and wild rice among others. I simply cannot wait to try some of the more unusual recipes like cheesecake and chocolate pots. I found this cookbook to have really clear instructions, well-laid out pages and very easy to use. Catherine explains recipes calmly and offers tips and alternatives. It really has taken the pressure off (pardon the pun) preparing an evening meal. So, do yourself a favour, buy a pressure cooker and this cookbook. Highly recommended.
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56 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy this book: you'll save time, money and eat well, 25 Oct 2012
This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
Summary: This is an exceptional cookbook that is packed full of helpful tips for family cooking as well as an outstanding guide to using the pressure cooker. Even if you already own an extensive range of books on pressure cooking, if you have a nagging feeling that you could achieve more with pressure cooking, you need this one. I've used a pressure cooker for more than 30 years and have read a fair number of books dedicated to them but I've never learned so much as I have from Catherine Phipps' cookbook.

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For some people, it seems that pressure cookers were always destined to be disregarded as a cooking device because of (generally unfounded) reservations about their safety and difficulty in using them properly (what was the proper amount of hiss and rock that indicated it was up to the desired pressure?). And now, with the ubiquity of microwaves, they're discounted because another time-saving device is readily available. Modern pressure cookers have lots of safety features and it's easier to judge when they're up to pressure and from when the recipes should be timed. Catherine Phipps gives a good overview of them along with helpful advice about appropriate sizes and other useful equipment and utensils. Just reading about how she discovered pressure cooking and developed her enthusiasm for what they represent in time-saving, fuel economy and, above all, as a technique for improving food preparation, gives the reader a strong hint that pressure cookers are rarely used to their full potential.

Reading it is like spending time in the kitchen with a very knowledgeable friend who not only demonstrates a dish but enlivens it with a personal story, offers some insight into an ingredient or mentions the impact of one element on the cooking time of another (eg, tomatoes on sardines) then suggests variations to suit other budgets, palates and dietary preferences and tops it off with time-saving shortcuts.

Like slow cookers, pressure cookers can provide flavourful food for people with erratic schedules: all too often, however, they yield uninspiring, dull-coloured, over-cooked, yet, somehow still tough food that sinks the heart as well as the stomach. Catherine Phipps understands this and, where appropriate, advises softening or sealing some items in advance of pressure cooking, or interrupting the cook to add ingredients at just the right time so that they don't over-cook.

The range of recipes is eclectic and meets the needs of cooks who want to try something different while still being able to feed a family (no mean feat). There are the typical but good recipes for stocks and poached chicken that you expect in a pressure cooker book, along with bacon and onion suet roll and some excellent bean/lentil stews.

I started using the absorption method for some pasta in sauce dishes after reading about it in Rosa Tidy's Pasta Book so was pleased that Catherine Phipps gives recipes and guidelines for how this technique can be adapted and improved further for pressure cooking.

I was delighted but very surprised to see recipes for rose petal jelly and lemon curd among the more usual preserves and intrigued enough to try them both, with excellent results (both are simple and good).

Catherine Phipps' recipes for both vegetables and fish/seafood were new to me and make excellent additions to the repertoire. I've made the confit tomatoes, roasted garlic, caramelised endives, roasted red peppers and cumin spiced potatoes several times and still can't quite believe how easy and quick these are for so much flavour (and no need to turn the oven on to roast the garlic or peppers which keeps the kitchen cooler and saves fuel).

Because the preserves and vegetables had been so successful, I suspended my misgivings about cooking fish and seafood in the pressure cooker and tried Catherine Phipps' en papillotte fish and the Basque squid stew. I was very pleased with both and will summon up the courage to try out her Greek octopus salad in the future.

I now eat eggs more regularly as I'd previously no idea that they're so well suited to pressure cooking. This is not just a case of using the pressure cooker as a faster way to produce something but an improved way (the Scotch eggs recipe advises you to steam the eggs at low pressure to achieve a runny yolk and just set white and this is well worth adapting for other recipes).

Thanks to Catherine Phipps, I've learned new information about pressure cooking and that it's suited to a greater variety of foodstuffs and dishes than I realised and this has extended my range of practical meals for the working week and other, more frivolous, occasions. I look forward to cooking my way through the recipes I haven't attempted yet.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An essential and inventive guide to pressure cooking, 18 April 2013
This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
As a 'throw it in the pot' cook, I wouldn't have known where to start without some clear guidance on the nuances of pressure cooking, so this book has been invaluable. The writing style is accessible, often drawing upon the author's personal experiences of different cuisines, but married with the precise details and timings essential for this mode of cooking.

As a novice, and being a little wary at first, I started with some basics, such as brown rice and garlic mashed potatoes, before progressing, through dhals and risottos, to some of the book's more adventurous combinations. Every dish I've tried has turned out perfectly and the recipes are easy to scale up or down from the 'serves four' standard in the book. There are also occasional tips on variations and additions to the main recipes. As a vegetarian, I thought I might be limited, but there are dedicated sections for "Beans and Pulses" and "Rice, Grains and Pasta", as well as for vegetables, soups, starters and desserts. I've even modified some of the meat and fish recipes without too much difficulty.

In summary, this book is a wonderful collection of recipes by someone who is clearly inspired by food, and for a practical and inventive guide to pressure cooking I doubt it could be bettered.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love my pressure cooker, 25 Sep 2012
This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
I have always had a pressure cooker, and always a Prestige HiDome old fashioned one with weights. I had one with my mum at home, I had another as my own as a wedding present some 30 years ago, and I replaced that last year as the handle had fallen apart. But always the same one. Now I am wishing that I had read Catherine's book first before buying that last one, I would have got a nice shallow wide one, which would have made a lot of her recipes easier to do.

And there are a LOT of recipes and tips that I want to try in this book. I was amazed at the things I would never have thought of cooking in a pressure cooker - vegetables, fruit for cakes, fruit for marmalade (I admit I do that, but didn't realise that I was cooking the fruit for too long, now I have cut the time back) in addition to the steamed puddings, soups and casseroles I have always made. Now that the price of gas and electricity is on the up and up again, it is even more important to save fuel, and this book will make that enjoyable as well as necessary.

Production also is nice. I like that the book doesn't have a jacket. I seem to spend a lot of my life taping torn jackets together, so this wipe clean board cover is much more convenient.

A recommended buy.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A magical cookbook, 28 April 2013
By 
Averil Newsam "living for learning" (Middlesbrough, UK) - See all my reviews
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I bought this on kindle and I can't stop reading it and wanting to try new recipes that I would never have tried without my new pressure cooker. I agree with all the other reviews that mention the breadth of Catherine Phipps expertise as well as the practical, time saving application of this expertise. She encourages her reader to try variations and make store cupboard favourites like jams or proper custard in the pressure cooker, which are complete revelations to me. But best of all is having her book on Kindle/ipad because of the way it includes electronic links to other, related recipes or methods. I bought this version because I want to use it on the move, in our campervan, but I'm using it every day at home because of the new things I'm learning from it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I like this, 20 Mar 2013
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This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
At last, a pressure cooker recipe book that is up-to-date and written from a UK standpoint, i.e. uses weight. Most on Amazon are from the US, so you end with measures in US cups and the like.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delicious recipes for all the family, 6 Sep 2012
By 
T. Hewison (Reading, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
I have so far cooked 3 dishes from here - the tarka dhal, chocolate pots and caponata (albeit without the anchovies) and all have turned out delicious. I love dhal, and I think Catherine's is probably now my favourite version. I am intrigued by the one pot pasta dishes, as that is something I have never even considered before, and the simple instructions to make dishes like hummus or even dulche de leche, show once again what a versatile beast the pressure cooker is.
Catherine eloquently explains how she has arrived at her recipes and guides us on a journey to cook simply, cost-consciously and hopefully deliciously. At a time when people have less and less time to cook the speed of pressure cooking is a welcome surprise.
As a non-meater, my only request would be that Catherine writes a vegetarian version. I can't wait to pre-order it!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book if you're new to pressure cooking., 4 Jan 2013
By 
P Elder - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
I bought a WMF pressure cooker on this author's advice, there is a great section about choosing a pressure cooker which you can read with the 'take a look' feature on Amazon. I bought the book alongside the pressure cooker and It's a great cookbook.

The start of the book goes through all the basics you need to know about pressure cooking, and all the equipment you need, it's mostly things you will already have but it's handy to know how these things will be used.

I've tried a few of the recipes so far and they have all turned out perfectly. I was sceptical about making risotto in a pressure cooker, mine usually takes a good 50-60 minutes from start to finish. The cooking time for this recipe is only 5 minutes and it was by far the best I've ever made, really creamy with loads of flavour. The dhal had great consistency and flavour too (another meal that usually takes me an hour) but only 12 minutes in a pressure cooker.

The thing I like most about this cookbook is the amount and variety of recipes. I cook a lot so I can see how this book will be a good tool in converting some of my own recipes for the pressure cooker, and also recipes from other books. It also helps you to get away from the idea of only using the pressure cooker for stews and braises, and has far more creative recipes than I expected.

All in all, I just can't wait to cook more things from it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great guide to cooking under pressure, 20 Jan 2013
This is a great book.
The recipes are really varied so there is always something to cook whether your cooking for just yourself or a family gathering.

I like the fact that many of the recipes are a little different to the normal pressure cooker fare. I've made a lot of the recipes with my facourites so far being the Peruvian lamb stew, Chinese rice hot pot, and the quick-cook pasta dishes really are a revelation.

I would recommend this to anyone that is new to pressure cooking or wants to try a selection of new and interesting recipes.

This book has given me confidence to experiment and create my own pressure cooker recipes.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Take the pressure off YOURSELF!, 5 Oct 2012
By 
Mrs Curzon Tussaud (London, U.K.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Pressure Cooker Cookbook (Hardcover)
There must be a case for having a pressure cooker in the kitchen rather than a microwave, as you can do "real cooking" in a pressure cooker rather than just re-heating in the microwave. You lose almost none of the liquid content of a recipe, so stews and casseroles stay very juicy. I was excited at the prospect of the one-pot pasta meals, and have cooked the meatball and pasta recipe, which turned out exactly as expected, and was delicious.I added a drizzle of cream, and chopped parsley before serving.

The cheesecake looked a bit like scrambled eggs on opening the cooker, but it "calmed down" as it cooled and tasted very good. I shall do that again. The wipe-clean cover is a huge improvement on dust jackets, which always look tatty after a few years. There are many many excellent ideas in this book and I am so pleased with it.
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The Pressure Cooker Cookbook by Catherine Phipps (Hardcover - 6 Sep 2012)
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