My family’s traditional, New Year’s Day Meal for Good Luck is Pork and Kraut (aka Pork Roast and Sauerkraut with Hot Dogs and Kielbasa served with copious piles of creamy Mashed Potatoes, if I were to be more specific).
When I first met my husband and learned that his family shared the same tradition as mine, I was so excited. Ray loved Pork and Kraut as much as I did and that clearly solidified that our relationship was meant to be, right??
However, that’s when I learned a *slight* variation in his family’s tradition vs mine. Since my mom and grandmother ALWAYS cooked their Pork and Kraut in the pressure cooker, I just assumed that was how everyone else made it.. I learned that most people just roasted/baked their pork and kraut *GASP* for several hours.
It only took one time for Ray to be converted to my Pressure Cooker Pork and Kraut – the pork is melt in your mouth tender and deeply flavored with sauerkraut. And perhaps the best part is the hot dogs, yes I’m completely serious, they become puffy and butter soft. The hot dogs are the part of Pork and Kraut leftovers that we argue over who gets the last one!
Pork and Kraut was the food that started my life-long love affair with pressure cooking. I never learned to be nervous around pressure cookers and just accepted them as a necessary part of any kitchen.
I got my first pressure cooker was a hand me down from my grandmother when I was in college. It was a small aluminum 4 quart, weighted gauge with an old rubber gasket that needed many adjustments before it would properly seal. It was just big enough for a small pork roast and kraut with a 1/2 a pack of hot dogs.
This year (2016) marks the 20th year that I’ve been comfortably and safely using a pressure cooker. And while I’ve moved long past the days of aluminum, weighted gauge, hand me down models…. I now use a pressure cooker in my kitchen for almost daily, with the ease and quiet of the new electric models, it’s easy to become hooked on pressure cooking.
If you are looking for a easy to use and budget friendly electric pressure cooker, I recommend THIS one >> GoWise USA 8 Quart, 8 in 1 Multi-Cooker (the 6 quart is fab too, but trust me the bigger model is definitely better, I have both and speak from experience)
Many people are fans of the Instant Pot Brand, while all pressure cookers work basically the same and you can use them interchangeable in recipes like this, when I tried one out in my kitchen head-to-head against my GoWise, the Instant Pot brand was roughly 10% longer cooking times (including preheat and depressurize), significantly more expensive and only came in a claustrophobic 6 quart, not the larger 8 quart size.