A pressure cooker is a piece of kitchen equipment that I’ve been wanting to get since I saw my friend making dal in a few short minutes. I’ve had this fear of pressure cookers for ages since I heard horror stories of them exploding. They don’t do that anymore. The new ones are so technically advanced that anyone can use it without fear of catastrophe.
Last week I had the chance to try out the Tefal Cook4Me which is a pressure cooker or multi cooker. It’s quite a clever contraption. It is designed for one pot cooking and is very quick too.
It is an electrical machine and not one of those stove top pressure cookers.
The Cook4Me comes with some pre programmed recipes that you choose from the digital dial. When you pick a recipe, it will list out the ingredients that you need, depending on how many people you want to feed. As you follow along, it will tell you what you need to do.
As you follow along, it will tell you what you need to do (see video). A handy heating strip on the screen tells you when the appliance is heating up and when it is ready. When it is time to put on the pressure cooker, it will tell you and when you have locked it down, it will automatically cook for the prescribed time in the recipe. When this is done, the machine beeps an alarm. You will hear a hiss of steam releasing from a vent at the top of the pot.
If you are not around to turn it off or to open the lid, it will automatically go into “keep warm” mode. It can keep warm for up to 90 minutes. The screen will also show you how long it has been keeping warm.
We had a couple of recipes to try out and I have to say I am impressed. You still have to prepare all the food before you put it in the cooker. But once you are at that stage, the cooking time is just mere minutes.
You can see all the detailed specs here.
We made a Tuna Puttanesca which is basically tuna in a tomato sauce with capers, onions and olives. The only prep to do was to chop and fry some onions. Then it was a matter of opening cans and jars of other ingredients. The machine prompts you to fry the onions using medium heat. You decide how long this needs to fry for then press OK.
You then put in all the other ingredients and lock the lid. The machine will then go into preheating mode as indicated on the screen. When this is complete, it will go into the 3 minute pressure cooking mode.
Ongoing instructions on where you are in the recipe
When the 3 minutes is up, the steam vent releases and you can see and hear the steam escaping.
The result was a tomatoey sauce and tuna fish that tasted like it had been slow cooking on the stove for hours. This is the finished dish in just a few minutes. You can serve it with some pasta or some other vegetables if you prefer. If I cooked this again, I would tweak it by changing the seasoning and maybe spicing it up. I would also reduce the sauce a bit more. The recipes that come with the machine are guidelines to cooking the dishes.
We also made a super quick soup and it took just a few minutes cooking time to get the vegetables soft. All the recipes they provide are quite simple. You can of course use this to cook beans and pulses which usually take a long time.
Can’t wait to try out the other recipes that come with the machine.
If you have your own recipes, you can easily use the manual functions to adjust the heat and time. Some other things you can cook quickly in this : rice, curries, stews and jams. If you had some ingredients you want to use, tell the machine and it will suggest ways to cook it.
Best of all, the cooking bowl is removable can be washed in a dish washer. Isn’t this the perfect appliance? Quick and simple one pot cooking that even a novice chef can use and easy washing up. Now to find somewhere for it to live on the kitchen counter.
Where to buy ?
Amazon UK with free shipping.
ps. There is a newer version which is connected to your smart phone. This new one is controlled via and app so you can put all your ingredients in the pot and remotely turn the machine on to cook. Can’t wait to have a play on the new one too.