How Hot Does a Pressure Cooker Get?
A pressure cooker gets hot! But this does not mean that the pressure cooker is dangerous to use or that it is any hotter to the touch than an ordinary saucepan. The heat of the pressure cooker is maintained within the sealed pot and it is this heat that makes cooking in this way so fast and effective and the pressure cooker so safe to use.
You can cook any type of food in a pressure cooker, anything that you can usually cook in water or steam. In order for it to work you need to the correct quantity of liquid along with the food. You also need to ensure that the unit is sealed. Once the heat rises and creates steam, this is trapped inside the vacuum-sealed pot and the hot steam cooks the food.
A pressure cooker works essentially by steam power. The high-temperature steam forces liquid into the food meaning that food is kept moistened and tender.
Because the pressure cooker is a sealed unit, the heat within quickly rises. The high pressure raises the boiling point within the pot at a far high level than you could achieve by simply boiling food in a conventional saucepan.
Pressure cooker temperatures can reach a whopping 250° Fahrenheit whereas the boiling point of water is 212° Fahrenheit. This added temperature coupled with steam, results in super-fast cooking times.
Although the pressure cooker uses extremely high temperatures and intense steam power in order to cook, you don’t have to worry about safety.
A modern pressure cooker is extremely safe and convenient to use. Millions of people use pressure cookers throughout the world and because they cook everything so perfectly you know that any bacteria contained in the food will be killed off and the food cooked safely.
Using a pressure cooker enables you to cook dried pulses and beans without the need for soaking and you can buy economical cuts of meat without spending hours in tenderizing them by cooking.
Because the pressure cooker reaches such high temperatures, all modern pressure cookers come with inbuilt safety features and you have a range of ways to release pressure once you have finished cooking your food.
Simply turning off the pressure cooker and allowing it to cool down is an easy option – this can be good for dishes such as casseroles where precise cooking time is not important because even once the heat supply is turned off, the food will continue to cook for a while.
You can try running the cold tap over the pot in order to speed this up.
If you want to release the steam pressure by using the release valve, it is important to ensure that you have positioned the pressure cooker in a safe place where the high-temperature steam can dissipate safely and you may need to wear gloves to avoid scalding.
All pressure cookers have a safety lock in place so you cannot open the lid until it is safe to do so. The pressure cooker indicator will tell you when the appliance is cooled down sufficiently to be opened safely.