Desserts such as puddings and cheesecakes come out very well when made in a pressure cooker but you must have the right tools and the right timing. My recipes are based on the equipment that I use so you may have to make adjustments according to your equipment...or buy what I use :-).
The pressure inside of a Pressure Cooker is measured in PSI (pounds per square inch). Depending on the type of cooker you have, the pressure may be preset for you, you may have a choice between "low" and "high" pressure or you may even be able to choose between the exact pounds of pressure that you want. Remember the old-school pressure cookers, like my canning pressure cooker in the picture, with the pressure valve that rattled on top? You can see in the photo of the valve that you can choose between 5, 10 or 15 psi.
Being able to choose your psi is a great feature for avid canners and pressure cooker users because you can have a greater degree of accuracy and, thus, success. You can choose lower pressures for delicate foods like soft veggies and fish, medium pressure for root veggies and poultry and higher pressures for tough cuts of meat and dense cakes. If you do not have the choice of adjusting the psi, your only option is to adjust your cooking times. The lower the psi, the more cooking time is required.
So why don't all pressure cookers have a choice of psi? Because they are either unsafe and scary (as in the removable gauge type) or nicely built-in, but expensive. Most people want safe and they want cheap...thus they choose a 1 psi electric pressure cooker like the one I use!
Bottom-line, when you find a recipe that you would like to make, pay attention to what psi the developer used when determining the recipe cook time. Looking at one cookbook that I own, I made a cheesecake where the recipe said to cook it, covered, for 22 minutes. I upped it to 24 minutes and my cheesecake still turned out with a completely runny center from about 2-inches in from the edge. So disappointing!
My recipes are written using my 8 qt electric pressure cooker with 12 psi.
If you do not know what psi your pressure cooker is, it should be listed in the manual. If you have lost the manual, I suggest you search the internet for your make and model to see if you can find the manual or contact the manufacturer. Not only will the manual list the psi, it will often have a complete cooking time chart for your specific cooker. In my experience, most electric pressure cookers are 12 psi or they have a choice of 8psi or 12 psi.
In terms of Cheesecake:
At 12 psi, a 7" cheesecake, cooked uncovered on a 2" tall rack takes 28-30 minutes.
Need the manual for the Elite 8-qt Cooker? Click here.