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Today, one of the most exciting trends in American entertaining is rediscovering the festive spirit found in our unique heritage. Every region of the country has its own style of cooking, its own "native" recipes, and its own delightful entertaining traditions. Now modern Americans are taking new pride in presenting these regional specialties to their guests at everything from classic sit-down dinners to informal family-style suppers.

Whatever the occasion, whatever the menu, hosts and hostesses from coast to coast have one thing in common. They all want creative ways to make entertaining easy, yet elegant. And nothing answers the need better than pressure cooking. When the pressure's on, pressure cooking is the busy entertainer's best friend!

All kinds of authentic crowd-pleasing recipes cook to perfection in the Pressure Cooker. And they do it quickly - three to ten times faster than with ordinary cooking methods. Plus, with pressure cooking's versatility, it's easy to prepare several dishes or a complete party menu at one time.

No matter what state you hail from or call home, there's an American favorite that is sure to please your party guests. Here are just a few stateside specialties for you to try next time you entertain. Each recipe is based on traditional, historical American cooking styles. But these new renditions have all been modified and tested to represent the tastes, techniques, and refinements of contemporary cuisine.

So, rediscover the festive spirit of celebrating USA style with these great all-American recipes and menus. It's easy with quick and convenient pressure cooking - the secret to elegant entertaining under pressure!


Today's informal barbeque (from the Spanish barbacoa, meaning a "frame") is a miniature counterpart of the huge outdoor feasts popularized by cowboys, campaigning politicians and cattle ranchers in the early days. Texans in particular were famous for roasting great quantities of beef on green wood frames over open fires. During the slow roasting, an equally impressive amount of spicy, tomato-spiced barbeque sauce was used to baste the meat.

Texas Barbeque Pot Roast

  • 1/2 cup catsup
  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Teriyaki or Soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon crushed dry red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 4-4 1/2-pounds, eye of round, bottom round, boneless chuck roast, or pork loin roast
  • 1 1/2 cups water for beef or 2 cups water for pork
  • 1 large onion, sliced

Prepare barbeque sauce by mixing together catsup, preserves, brown sugar, vinegar, Teriyaki, red pepper, mustard, and pepper. Place roast and barbeque sauce in a large plastic bag, or glass dish. Refrigerate overnight. Place water and cooking rack in a 6-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker. Cover rack with half of the sliced onions. Remove roast from sauce (reserve sauce). Put roast on onions and cover with remaining onions. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly, for the following doneness: 8 to 10 minutes per pound for rare; 10 to 12 minutes for medium; at least 12 to 15 minutes per pound for well-done meat. Cook pork 15 minutes per pound until well done. Let pressure drop of its own accord. Meanwhile, place reserved barbeque sauce in a saucepan and simmer, until reduced by about one-half, stirring occasionally. Remove roast and keep warm. Discard cooking water or use for making soup. Puree onions in a blender or food processor and add to reduced barbeque sauce. Serve sauce with sliced roast. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

MENU SUGGESTION: Barbeque Pot Roast, Butternut Squash, Cole Slaw, Jalapeno Corn Bread, Texas Pecan Cake

Down in the bayou, a uniquely American cooking style was born - Creole cuisine. An outstanding example of the American "melting pot," Creole cookery was the ingenious creation of descendants from the original French and Spanish settlers in Louisiana. They spiced it up with influences from the Choctaw Indians and Africa, devising savory new recipes. Creole Cod reflects both the careful use of seasonings characteristic of French cooking and the love of hot, spicy flavors that is typically Spanish.

Creole Cod

  • 1/4 cup vegetable or olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 large green pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 2 (1-pound) packages (blocks) frozen cod fillets
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Saute onion, green pepper, celery, and garlic in oil in a 4- or 6-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker. Remove vegetables from pan and reserve. Drain juice from tomatoes (about 1 cup). Place the tomato juice, wine, and cooking rack in Pressure Cooker. Put 2 frozen blocks of fish on rack in a criss-cross fashion. Do not allow fish to extend above the 2/3 full level in the Pressure Cooker. It may be necessary to break fish up slightly. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook for 5 minutes, at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly. Cool Pressure Cooker at once. Remove fish and reserve. Add sauteed vegetables, tomatoes, bay leaves, paprika, cayenne pepper and salt to juices in Pressure Cooker. Break reserved fish into large chunks and place in Pressure Cooker. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook for 0 minutes at 15 pounds pressure. Cool cooker at once. Remove fish. Pour sauce over fish, discarding bay leaf. Serve in bowls with a portion of cooked rice in the center. Serves 8.

MENU SUGGESTION: Creole Cod, Rice, Romaine Lettuce Salad, French Bread, Bread Pudding

Hard working colonists relied on hearty fare to foil the chill of autumn evenings in New England. So, Yankee ingenuity created the boiled dinner. It's robust, "stick to the ribs" eating that's ripe with history and the bounty of the harvest.

Colonial Boiled Dinner

  • 3 pound beef brisket
  • 1/2 cup Teriyaki sauce
  • 2 cups water
  • 3-4 small red potatoes, unpeeled and cut in half
  • 3-4 carrots, peeled & quartered
  • 2 cups turnips, peeled & sliced
  • 2 large onions, quartered
  • 1 pound cabbage, cut into 6-8 wedges

Place beef brisket and Teriyaki sauce in a large plastic bag or a glass dish. Refrigerate, turning two or three times, for 1-2 days. Place 1 cup water and cooking rack in a 4- or 6-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker. Remove brisket from sauce and put on rack. (Discard sauce.) Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook for 40 minutes, at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly. Let pressure drop of its own accord. Remove meat and keep warm. Add an additional 1 cup water to Pressure Cooker. Put vegetables on rack. Do not fill pressure cooker over 2/3 full. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook for 3 minutes, at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly. Cool cooker at once. Serve brisket thinly sliced, surrounded by vegetables. Makes 8 servings.

MENU SUGGESTION: Colonial Boiled Diner, Molded Cranberry Salad, Brown Bread, Pumpkin Custard

Beef emerged as a staple of the American diet when the wide, sweeping ranges of the west and the Great Plains became accessible by railroad in the 1800s. From the Midwestern stockyards, prime, corn-fed beef was transported coast to coast - to the delight of the American palate. This succulent beef dish typifies the creative ways U.S. cooks served the "world's best" beef.

Chicago Steak Rollups

  • 2 1/2 pounds round steak, cut 1/2 inch thick
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped onion
  • 2 cups finely chopped butternut squash (peeled)
  • 1/4 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons margarine, melted
    - - - - - - - - - -
  • 1/4 cup margarine
  • 1 cup water

Cut meat into 8 pieces and pound until 1/4 inch thick. Combine flour, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. Dredge seasoned flour into each piece of meat. Mix together bread crumbs, onion, squash, green pepper, celery, 1 teaspoon salt, egg, and 2 tablespoons melted margarine. Spread squash mixture evenly over each piece of meat, roll, and fasten with a toothpick. Brown meat rolls on all sides in 1/4 cup margarine in a 4- or 6-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker. Remove rolls from pan. Place 1 cup water and cooking rack in Pressure Cooker. Put rolls on rack. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook for 15 minutes, at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly. Cool cooker at once. Remove beef rolls to warm serving platter. Pan juices may be thickened for gravy. Makes 8 servings.

MENU SUGGESTION: Chicago Steak Rollups, Noodles, Baby Carrots, Marinated Cucumbers, Cherry Pie

When the West was settled, many Orientals were numbered among the people who populated this land of milk and honey. Long expert in the art of preparing chicken, they set their Far Eastern cooking skills to work creating tantalizing chicken entrees that capitalized on the coast's cornucopia of fruits and vegetables. San Francisco Chicken combines the delicate flavor of oranges with age-old Oriental touches of ginger and Soy sauce.

San Francisco Chicken

  • 3 pound chicken, cut into serving pieces
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 green pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 onion, cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange rind
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons sherry
  • 2 tablespoons Soy sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons margarine
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds

Place chicken on rack in a 4- or 6-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker. Add water. Cover with green pepper, onion, and grated orange rind. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook 8 minutes, at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly. Cool Pressure Cooker at once. Meanwhile, prepare orange sauce by mixing together orange juice, sherry, Soy sauce, ginger, brown sugar, margarine, and cornstarch. Cook over medium heat until thickened, while stirring constantly. Remove chicken and vegetables to heated platter. Spoon orange sauce over chicken and sprinkle with slivered almonds. May be garnished with orange slices. Makes 6 servings.

MENU SUGGESTION: San Francisco Chicken, Chinese Noodles, Salad Bar, Sourdough Bread, Fresh Fruit in Wine

In the fertile hills of Pennsylvania, devout Dutch settlers established colonies of farms and small cottage industries dedicated to honest hard work. Here they also nurtured a cuisine that reflected the generosity of the land they lived on. Hearty soups and stews flavored with meats that were butchered and prepared at home were standard fare. Many of them featured light, airy gnepp - dumplings - floating temptingly on the top.

Lancaster Soup 'N Dumplings

  • 1 (13 3/4-ounce) can chicken broth or 1 3/4 cups
  • 2 pounds pork shoulder with excess fat removed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound cabbage, shredded
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh tomato
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 (4-ounce) can sliced mushrooms, including liquid
  • 4 cups water

Place chicken broth, salt, pepper, and cooking rack in a 6-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker. Place pork on rack. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook for 30 minutes, at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly. (Meanwhile, prepare dumplings, below.) Cool Pressure Cooker at once. Remove pork and cooking rack and set aside, reserving liquid. When meat is cool, remove from bones and add to reserved liquid. (This may be done a day ahead.) When ready to prepare soup, put meat and reserved broth in Pressure Cooker. Add cabbage, onion, tomato, paprika, mushrooms, and water to meat mixture. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook 5 minutes at 15 pounds pressure. Let pressure drop of its own accord. Add dumplings and cook as directed in dumpling recipe. Makes 8 servings.

Dumplings

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1 tablespoon shortening
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 (8-ounce) carton plain yogurt

Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and caraway seeds in mixing bowl; cut in shortening. Add chopped parsley. Mix together egg and yogurt; add to flour mixture and mix until just moistened. When soup is finished, drop mixture by rounded tablespoonsful onto top of simmering soup. Do not use Pressure Cooker cover. Steam, uncovered, for 25 minutes over medium heat. Serve 1 dumpling in each bowl of soup. Accompany with extra yogurt, if desired. Makes 8 dumplings.

MENU SUGGESTION: Lancaster Soup 'N Dumplings, Pickled Yellow Beans, Corn Relish, Red Beet Salad, Rolls with Apple Butter, Shoo-fly Pie

One of the chief meat dishes of the early Virginia settlers, ham rapidly became a mainstay of Southern cuisine. It graced the tables of everyone from the humblest farmer to the most genteel landowner. Southern Stuffed Ham Steaks are an updated version of an authentic recipe developed in Charles Country, Maryland over three hundred years ago. For real Southern hospitality, serve it with Hoppin'John, another American favorite featuring black-eyed peas and long grain rice.

Southern Stuffed Ham Steaks

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach, or
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen spinach*
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh collard greens, or 1 (10-ounce) package frozen collard greens*
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • Crushed dry red pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup instant mashed potato flakes
  • 2 ham steaks (1 to 1 1/2 pounds each, cut about 1-inch thick)
  • 1 1/2 cups water

Mix together spinach, greens, onion, celery, red pepper, salt and potato flakes. If necessary, trim ham steaks to fit into a 6-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker. Pour water into Pressure Cooker. Place one ham steak on rack in Pressure Cooker. Spread spinach mixture evenly over the ham steak. Place the other ham steak on top of the spinach mixture. Close Pressure Cooker cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook for 5 minutes, at 15 pounds pressure, with regulator rocking slowly. Let pressure drop of its own accord. Remove ham to heated platter and slice. Makes 8 servings.

*If using frozen products, defrost and press to remove excess water.

MENU SUGGESTION: Southern Stuffed Ham Steaks, Hoppin'John, Lettuce/Tomato/Cucumber Salad, Biscuits, Strawberries and Cream

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