There are certain arguments that will never be concluded, certain arguments that are never going to end at a concession. The Heeled-Flat shoe debate, the Coke-Pepsi cola drink debate, as well as the BMW-Mercedes car debate.
These arguments have no ending, precisely because there are die-hard devotee of the each side who believe everything from the other side is not worth the scum of the earth. Coke addicts believe a Pepsi drink is not worth the can it comes in, while Mercedes aficionados believe BMW might be a good car, but just not as good as the Benz, and vice versa for BMW enthusiasts.
One of such arguments is what we have on our hands today: pressure cooker vs slow cooker: which is better?
The most interesting thing about these kinds of arguments is that both sides have very important features about them that make them wonderful to their believers. We’re not here to tell you that Pressure Cooker or Slow Cooker is better than the other. We believe that if we make a case by showing you the best features that make them what they are, you can decide for yourself which one you think is better for you.
Pressure Cooker vs Slow Cooker
Quite different from the slow cookers, pressure cookers are ultra-fast, and perform at very high temperatures, cutting down cooking time to the barest minimum.
How does a Pressure Cooker work?
These are closed cases usually made of metal, with a lid attached. There are different kinds of pressure cookers, ranging from electric self-operated models to stove top models (designed to function like a normal pot, needing to be placed on a stove for heat).
According to what is known as the Gay-Lussac’s Law in Chemistry, the temperature of a gas increases as the pressure increases, as long as the volume is kept constant. This is the law under which pressure cookers work. It uses the steam that accumulates inside the case to increase the pressure inside the cooker, thereby raising the temperature to high levels, resulting in food being cooked faster than most other methods of cooking.
All pressure cookers have a metal casing, as well as release valves for air and steam, as well as some kind of indicator for the pressure that has been built up. Electrical models have settings for temperature and pressure adjustments.
The pressure cooker works by raising the internal temperature past boiling temperature, which turns the liquid into hot steam. While this is going on, the air is allowed to escape through the release valves and is replaced by steam. This increases the pressure within the cooker. The steam is absorbed into the foods, and then cooks the foods from within it.
Once the food is done and ready, the steam is released from the cooker.
- This is one of the fastest and most thorough method of cooking.
- Easy to clean.
- Very little water is needed here than most other methods of cooking.
- Pressure cookers are usually portable.
- It is the best for foods that require high heat for killing microbes and toxins.
- It uses much less electricity than microwaves and most other electric cookers.
- Pressure cookers come with several different parts, which makes them complicated. They are therefore not so easily maintained.
- Pressure cookers can be dangerous, and have recorded some kitchen accidents, due to the high pressure and temperature. There’s a high record of burns due to improper usage.
- They are usually more expensive than other tools that they replace, like pots.
As the name suggest, slow cookers cook food very slowly, taking as long as 8 long hours to cook most foods. On the contrary, pressure cookers cook food extremely fast, mostly a few minutes per meal, without loss in flavouring or taste.
The slow cooker is sometimes called a crockpot. The name “crockpot” is a brand name for slow cookers trademarked by Sunbeam Products, a manufacturer of slow cookers.
How does a Slow Cooker work?
Slow cookers cook food in a slow manner, by applying much lower heat than most other kinds of cooking, and allowing the food to simmer for hours. This is most useful for cooking throughout the night, when you need to sleep and need the food done and ready when you wake up in the morning, at the same time avoiding overcooking.
Most slow cookers come with a glass lid, and a porcelain or ceramic body. It is of necessity that there be sufficient water in the cooker, as it transfers the heat to the food through the steam. For this reason, there is usually a small groove underneath the lid, in which water vapour can accumulate, to serve as a seal during the cooking process.
After the food is cooked and ready, the slow cooker is able to keep the food warm for an extended period of time, so reheating is usually not necessary.
- There is no risk of burning or overcooking the food.
- If you have a busy schedule, you can just put in everything needed ingredient in your cooker, put it on, and go get busy, whether overnight or throughout the work day.
- Tough meat can be easily prepared, and it will come out tender with all its flavour intact.
- Slow cookers are easier to clean and maintain.
- You need a low amount of electricity here, quite different from other kinds of cookers.
- Slow cookers cook food by steaming. For this reason, it is not suitable for foods that are not cooked with water or other liquids.
- Because you don’t have to be there to watch them, slow cookers can be affected by power outages.
- Hard food, like beans, may need to be boiled first, because some of these hard foods contain toxins that can only be destroyed by boiling temperatures.
The pressure cooker and the slow cooker are obviously important additions to any kitchen, as they bring their different shades of convenience and awesomeness to cooking.
That being said, if you would have to choose one, having looked at what each of these cookers does, how each one works, and their pros and cons, whichever one you prefer should be a product of your needs in a cooker.
If you ask me, I already have my choice, but I think it would be best that we have both of them in the kitchen.
You never know.