cleaning hacks for you that work like magic. These can be used for other utensils as well, but since the pressure cooker is the most prized cookware in every Indian kitchen, save them for the next time you make a rich chicken curry or a fragrant biryani.
1. A Splash of Hot Water for Burnt Food
The easiest way to get rid of the burnt remnants, especially for a pressure cooker, is to fill it up with water and put it on the stove for 10-15 minutes on slow heat. It will help loosen up all the food bits that can be easily scrubbed off later.
(Also read: How to Cook Rice, Meat and Pulses in a Pressure Cooker)
2. Onion for Black Stains
A pressure cooker is a long-lasting companion. You’ve probably been using for a few years now and the surface may be tainted with black stains that build up over time. To make your pressure cooker look clean and smooth again, you need use this simple routine. Fill your pressure cooker with water covering the stained areas. Drop 5 to 6 onion skins (outer layer of the onion) in the water. Place it on the stove on high heat and close the lid. Let the water and onion skin boil for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove and once it is cool, gently scrub the surface.
3. Cream of Tartar for Aluminium Pressure Cookers
Cream of Tartar is nothing but tartaric acid. It is actually a powdered substance found at the bottom of the barrels that are used for making wine. The process is the same. Fill the pressure with water – only 1/2 or 3/4ths of it. Don’t fill it completely. Put 2-3 teaspoons of tartaric acid in it and place the cooker on the burner. You can also squeeze the juice of two lemons for their acidic action on the surface and of course, the fragrance. Heat it up till the water starts boiling. After a few minutes, you may notice the black stains disappear. Remove from the burner and clean with normal soap. This will help restore the shiny surface of your pressure cooker.
4. Baking Soda for Hard and Old Stains
If there’s a hard ring of crud around the bottom of your pressure cooker that has accumulated over a very long time, baking soda is the best ingredient to clear it off. This magic cleaner is a must in your kitchen. Add two-three teaspoons of baking soda to your pressure cooker filled with water. Simmer it on low heat for few hours. You can even put a few drops of liquid soap. Remove from the burner and leave it to cool. Once the cooker is cool, scrub again with baking soda to remove the leftovers and reveal the shiny surface. Baking soda is also great for cleaning enameled or painted cookware because it is mild and does not ruin the surface.
(Also read: What is the Difference Between Baking Soda and Baking Powder)
5. Vinegar for Mineral Deposits
When you use your pressure cooker for a very long time, a white layer of mineral deposits may develop. An easy way to clean it is by using vinegar which is acidic in nature and helps in dissolving the grime. Fill the pressure cooker with water and add 1 cup of white vinegar. Let it sit overnight. Next morning, wash and dry it as usual and you may see a noticeable difference. Repeat this again in few days to get rid of any remnants.
You should never store cooked food in a pressure as it makes it harder to remove the remnants. Also, always soak the pressure cooker in warm water after using it for a half an hour. This will loosen up the burnt bits stuck on the surface. Use a sponge or a cloth to scrub the surface, metal scouring pads can damage the surface beyond repair.
So, you’ve served a delicious dinner and impressed everyone with your cooking skills. You walk back to your kitchen feeling proud and satisfied only to catch a glimpse of the messy pots and pans crying for your attention. The tough stains, burnt food and stuck-on leftovers need a good hand of cleaning and that’s probably the last thing you deserve after a great evening. It hits you the most when you prepare Indian food that involves a plethora of spices and ingredients. Drown your worries as we have some easy