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Pressure Cooker Class Shows How to Make the Most of Popular Device

By now, you’ve probably heard someone rave about their electric pressure cooker. Able to cook food more quickly than other kitchen appliances, these devices have recently surged in popularity.

Sarah Ellis noticed the enthusiasm for the devices when teaching one of her cooking classes.

“We were using an electric pressure cooker to demonstrate how to make a meal for one or two, and it occurred to me: I should do a class just on cooking with the pressure cooker,” said Ellis, a family and consumer sciences agent in Citrus County with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Extension.

And like electric pressure cookers themselves, Ellis’ “Cooking Under Pressure” classes have been very popular, filling up months in advance. “People are aware of the advantages of a pressure cooker, but they might not know how to make the most of them. That’s where the program can help,” she said.

In the program, participants learn to cook a variety of foods, from basics like rice and vegetables, to more advanced dishes like lemon garlic chicken, jambalaya and even cheesecake. Participants also learn food safety best practices, as well as how to operate the device and keep it in good working condition.

But Cooking Under Pressure about more than learning a new recipe or cooking technique, Ellis explained.

Research shows that cooking at home contributes to a healthier diet and saves money, while eating out and consuming more processed foods is usually more expensive and less nutritious, Ellis said.

Using an electric pressure cooker can help you eat healthier while saving you time and money, she said. It’s a win-win for those who don’t have a lot of time but want the benefits of eating at home.

“We’ve all been there: it’s been a long day, your family is hungry and it’s getting late. You could eat out. You could pop a frozen pizza in the oven. Or, in the same amount of time, you could make a meal in your pressure cooker. The third option is probably going to better for your diet and your wallet,” Ellis said.

For more information about electric pressure cooker classes in Citrus County, contact Sarah Ellis at (352) 527-5700 or ellissm@ufl.edu.

By: Samantha Grenrock, 352-294-3307 (office), 949-735-1076 (cell), grenrosa@ufl.edu

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The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS works to bring science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents. Visit the UF/IFAS web site at ifas.ufl.edu and follow us on social media at @UF_IFAS.

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