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Traditional boiled puddings - converting recipes to pressure cooker?

 
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I love an old fashioned English Boiled Pudding.  Be it Christmas Plum pudding, boiled bread pudding (so much better than oven stuff they make these days), or... well, Mrs Beeton alone must have over 50 recipes for boiled puddings - not to mention boiled goodies like apple dumplings which is basically a whole apple, cored and peeled, rolled in sugar and spice, pack the middle with butter, and wrap in a pie crust.  Wrap in a cloth and boil for 4-6 hours.  

What I hate about boiled puddings is that they take anywhere from 1 to 8 hours of boiling to cook.  Topping up the water every half hour.  Wiping the excessive steam off the windows, while the neighbours snicker.  

If only there was a better way?  
looks at pressure cooker... hang on, maybe there is?

Does anyone know the conversion for...
... how long in the pressure cooker on high for each hour of regular boiling?
... increasing the leavening agent (I'm at sea level) - although Mrs B doesn't usually use it as it wasn't much of a thing, later recipes do.  
... anything else I should consider?  

 
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I know little about boiled puddings, or even using pressure cookers.

A rule of thumb in chemistry is that reaction speeds double for every 10 degree Celsius temperature increase.

A copycat from wikipedia:
Gauge PressureTemperatureAppr. Cooking time
0 bar (0 psi)100 °C (212 °F)100%
0.1 bar (1.5 psi)103 °C (217 °F)80%
0.2 bar (2.9 psi)105 °C (221 °F)70%
0.3 bar (4.4 psi)107 °C (225 °F)61%
0.4 bar (5.8 psi)110 °C (230 °F)50%
0.5 bar (7.3 psi)112 °C (234 °F)43%
0.6 bar (8.7 psi)114 °C (237 °F)38%
0.7 bar (10 psi)116 °C (241 °F)33%
0.8 bar (12 psi)117 °C (243 °F)31%
0.9 bar (13 psi)119 °C (246 °F)27%
1.0 bar (15 psi)121 °C (250 °F)25%
 
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We normally use a microwave a 4hr pudding takes 30minutes in a microwave.
you shouldn't need to top up water when boiling a pudding though use a lid, and only simmer the water.
you will also find that most puddings don't actually need such long cooking times.

as for raising agent, most of the UK that is inhabited is within a few 100m of sea level so recipes should be fine for you.
 
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I have a Presto Pressure Cooker Cookbook from 1975.

It says

steamed breads and puddings require a steaming period for leavening action before placing the Pressure Regulator on the vent pipe



Allow a gentle flow of steam to emerge from the vent pipe for the length specified in the recipe, then place Pressure Regulator on the vent pipe and cook according to directions.



The Bread Pudding recipe says to allow 5 minutes then place Pressure Regulator on vent pipe and cook 15 minutes. Let pressure release drop of its own accord.
 
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This might be a simple one to start with

https://www.biggerbolderbaking.com/steamed-marmalade-pudding/#marmpudding

It will either need more rising agents or pre-steaming.  But first,  we need to finish the results of yesterday's baking.
 
r ranson
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https://www.hippressurecooking.com/baking-powder-pcs/

I'm starting at sea level,  so that what my pre pressure recipes use.  It will need to convert to pressure,  which judging from my results,  most online pressure cooker baking recipes don't.
 
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They look YUMMY!!
 
r ranson
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Skandi Rogers wrote:We normally use a microwave a 4hr pudding takes 30minutes in a microwave.
you shouldn't need to top up water when boiling a pudding though use a lid, and only simmer the water.
you will also find that most puddings don't actually need such long cooking times.

as for raising agent, most of the UK that is inhabited is within a few 100m of sea level so recipes should be fine for you.



I don't have a microwave.

Most steamed puddings want to be kept at a strong simmer when cooked stovetop, but boiled puddings really do better at a full rolling boil.  Either way, with a high humidity in my atmosphere, cold air outside and warm air inside, and at the time living in a small apartment...
These puddings are adapted from times when most houses didn't have ovens in England, so the food was either roasted or boiled in one big pot.  As things were being added and taken away, the pot was kept at a full boil as much as possible to prevent the water from cooling down too much with new additions.  This was before cast iron and the technology to make stoves.  As the technology changed, so too did the way of making puddings in England to what people know today.

Pre-industrial puddings in England were mostly savoury (a great way to cook meat) until the 1800s, thus the long cooking time.  I do like to cook a suet pudding longer than a butter-based one.  Most of what I'm cooking are pre-industrial recipes, not modern ones, although I want to try those in the pressure cooker too.


Being at sea level shows what my base (cooking stovetop) leavening agent is.  But if I use this under pressure, then the pudding won't rise (if it is a recipe that rises).  Whereas someone who lives at altitude would use considerably less leavening agent so they would have to increase it quite a bit more for pressure cooking.  
 
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r ranson wrote:

Puddings in England were mostly savoury (a great way to cook meat) until the 1800s, thus the long cooking time.  I do like to cook a suet pudding longer than a butter-based one.  



I grew up in England on steamed puddings and they were all simmered never boiled. we didn't put the meat into the pudding uncooked though it went in cooked which also really reduces the time and makes a nicer (in my opinion) sauce.
 
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Steamed and boiled puddings changed dramatically when people started cooking on a wood or coal-fired range.  

The history of the boiled pudding is fascinating.  I would probably put Mrs Beeton as the turning point of traditional vs modern puddings,  as her book includes some medieval methods,  but also has the modern technology.  

I first came to boiled puddings while researching and reproducing medieval recipes.  This was a time when there was one metal cookpot for boiling and most of the other pots were pottery.  It's possible but not easy to brown meat in a pottery fry pan as uneven heat can cause the pan to shatter/crack and then it's more washing up to do.  Water was not an easy ingredient to get, so limiting the washing up was a big part.  Traditional (aka, pre stove) methods for cooking puddings are very different from what we find in Living Memory.

Anyway, that's a topic for another thread.

This isn't solving the challenge of converting recipes to work in the pressure cooker.  Did you have a  recipe that might be worth trying?
 
r ranson
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A lot of the difference in time is the size as well.  In modern days, it's assumed that one is cooking for 8 or fewer people.  The traditional puddings would be for a dozen or more people to eat over several meals.  Puddings were a way of keeping meat safe to eat for several days without a fridge.  The ingredients aren't measured in cups or oz, they are measured in pounds.  Here's an example of a christmas pudding that includes a pound of suit, pound of raisins, 8 eggs, pound of flour, a pint of milk ... and some other stuff.  That makes nearly a 5-pound pudding and boils for at least 5 hours over a flame.  Note how he's keeping the water boiling the whole time.  



Another factor that influences cooking time is the pudding basin.  The one I use adds an hour to the time compared to wrapping the pudding in a cloth, as the dish too has to heat up.

I'm looking forward to making a Christmas pudding again this year.  I love how little time and electricity the pressure cooker takes to cook.
 
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Not too much different than my daily bread. I make my flour from whole seeds except the oats are rolled or cracked to remove the hulls. I combine an one that is dusty when ground with one that is oily. A scoop of rice a large pinch of coconut flakes and a piece of nutmeg aground in a coffee mill. next a scoop of oats with chia seeds and salt. then a scoop of millet  with pumpkin seeds and cinnamon. last a scoop of lentils with flax seed and turmeric. add chopped  candied ginger and a variety of dried fruit from the farm, plums, small peaches, grapes, apples. this all goes into a stainless bowl that fits close in a pot that leave 2 inches of water under and around the bottom of the bowel. set the bole in the pot over the boiling water which has heated up while preparing the ingredients and stir in cold water until I have a batter. then stir in a tablespoon of coconut oil because I don't have any suit or lard. The dried fruit spokes up a lot of the moisture so it comes out of the bowel much like in the video after it has simmered for 2 or more hours on the lowest setting. Starting it when I make my morning smoothie It may simmer for 4 hours and be a little dryer. I can eat it out of the bowl with a spoon or dump it out on a plate and slice it to spread sour cream or cream cheese or nut butter on it. I suppose if I wanted to serve it as a fancy desert I could flame it with some of my vodka extract of blackcaps.
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