Hacking Your Pressure Cooker for Fun and Culinary Profit

Illustration for article titled Hacking Your Pressure Cooker for Fun and Culinary Profit

Fact: pressure cookers pump out optimal foods at 15psi, says Dave Arnold. Problem: most home pressure cookers max out well below that. Solution: Hack that little punk into submission, then feast on the rewards. Warning: Do not try this at home.


Fair warning that Arnold was using a specific Cuisinart model, and that the hack involved is not for amateurs (cooks, electricians, or otherwise):

I popped the connector off the circuit board and measured the resistance of the sensor as I changed the temperature with hot water. Boom. It was a simple temperature-dependent resistor (RTD), and the resistance went down as the sensor got hotter. So far, so good.

I filled the (unplugged) pressure cooker with oil and put in an immersion circulator set to 238 F. After the circ reached temperature, I measured how many ohms the sensor was reading: 5080. I then set the circulator to 250 F and read the resistance after the oil got to temp: 4110 ohms. I figured if I added 970 ohms to the circuit I'd be gold. I soldered in a 10 turn trimming potentiometer (variable resistor) into the circuit, set it to 970, and began testing.

But yes, see, once you've done all that, you're looking at a pressure cooker that churns out professional grade eggs, et al. Proceed with caution, enjoy with gluttonous abandon. [Cooking Issues]


So the cool thing these days is to call anything you do that involves changing something in some way "hacking"? It use to be "modifying", "tweaking", "improving", "re-engineering", etc. (or even "Macqyver'd it")