I can’t say that I ever used a pressure cooker growing up. Neither of my grandmothers cooked with one that I ever remember. And we didn’t have one in home economics classes either. They were probably deemed “unsafe” for school use since the lids were not made quite so well back in the day.
It wasn’t until after I had my children, and time became an issue with work and day care arrangements, that I started testing out recipes using the cooker. I rarely used it to make whole meals and I’ve never tried baking items in it. But, as a tool, to reduce the time it takes to cook meat or certain vegetables, it’s a great investment. It’s highly useful for canning those little gift jars of jam and makes quick work of the process too. Invest in a stainless one since aluminum sheds heavy metal at high temperatures and that is not healthy for you.
One of my favorite ways to use the pressure cooker is for poultry because it yields full-flavored, moist chicken along with broth for Mulligatawany Chicken Soup or risotto. Like the green bean recipe on this site, it’s simple and you can change some of the spices if you want to use your leftover chicken or broth for a specific recipe later. I also use this method to cook chicken backs and necks if I just need to make broth quickly or to cook multiple quail from my cousins’ hunting excursions. I’m sure you will find the broth from this recipe many times better than anything you buy at the grocery store and you’ll be able to control the salt and additives, creating a more healthy version.
Pressure Cooker Chicken & Homemade Broth
- 1 whole chicken (4-5 lbs fresh or thawed)
- 1 teaspoon Himalayan salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon Italian Herb Blend
- 1 stick fresh rosemary 3″ long, rinsed
- 1 tablespoon dried crushed celery leaves ( or 1 cup fresh celery, roughly chopped)
- 1 cup sweet onion, roughly chopped (or 1/2 cup of frozen roasted onions)
- 1/2 cup carrot, roughly cut up (optional)
- 1 teaspoon garlic, rough chopped (or 1 teaspoon roasted garlic)
- Wash your chicken or chicken parts well. It’s not necessary to dry them.
- Add everything to the pressure cooker and make sure your lid will close without binding.
- Add enough filtered water to fill the pot 1/3 – 1/2 way full, no more! The chicken does not have to be totally submerged because the cooking is done with heat and pressure. The liquid is just to provide you with broth. Over-filling is dangerous, so follow your manufacturer’s instructions.
- Put the lid on and add the pressure valve.
- Bring the pot up to a full boil according to your manufacturer’s instructions so the pressure valve is spinning very fast and loud.
- Reduce the heat to medium – high so the valve is running actively. Adjust the heat for your stove top.
- Cook for 30 minutes after the valve is spinning rapidly and turn off the heat. The pressure cooker will continue to cook the poultry for about an additional 15 minutes as the temperature reduces naturally. Don’t use the fast cooling method. Let the pressure continue to finish cooking the poultry.
- Once it is safe to open, you can remove the chicken and check the internal temperature which should be at least 165F.
- At that point it is safe to pull the chicken off of the bone and serve it warm.
- Strain the broth and discard the vegetables and spices. Refrigerate your broth overnight in small containers so that it cools down quickly. The fat will rise to the top and solidify. Skim it off before moving the broth to the freezer. Remember to label your broth with a date and use within 3 months.
- Store the chicken separate from the broth to use or freeze.