Let’s face it: pressure cookers like the Instant Pot do a much better job at cooking proteins (like chicken) than your trusty old Crockpot, in large part because they are able to retain the meat’s moisture better, which generally results in better tasting meals.
However, slow cookers are better at one thing – slow cooking (duh) – which is why many folks continue to use them as a trusty way to do unattended cooking for long stretches of time.
But what if you could chill your meal in your pressure cooker until it’s ready to cook? That’s the idea behind Gourmia’s new CoolCooker, which the company plans to debut at Housewares Show next week. According to the release, the GPCC1960 CoolCooker “allows cooks to put a meal’s ingredients into the unit hours prior to the cooking process beginning, keeping it fresh and cold (at 35°F), just as it would be if it came directly out of the refrigerator.”
In theory, it’s a good idea. Being able to pre-prepare a pressure cooker meal and set and forget it for a few hours until you’re ready to cook certainly adds to the convenience factor.
That said, my first thought when I saw the press release about a cooking appliance with built-in cooling was “it had better keep the food cool”. After all, sous vide appliance Mellow (before it got a software update to correct the problem) got a brutal review by Wired’s Joe Ray specifically because it wasn’t able to keep food out of the ‘danger zone’. But, Gourmia goes to great pains – both in the release and in my email conversation with Gourmia founder Heshy Biegeleisen – to point out that the new appliance will keep food at 35°F with its built in refrigeration technology.
My second thought was “it had better manage pressure well.” Because pressure cookers cook with extremely high heat (and, well, pressure), you always should be careful with a pressure cooker, even if modern cookers have mostly made the process foolproof. By enabling unattended pressure cooking, it goes without saying that the thing had better work well.
According to Gourmia, the app allows you to manage pressure remotely: “By combining Gourmia’s state-of-the-art automatic pressure release, auto stir, fully adjustable pressure setting, and remote pressure release technologies with their new cooling innovation, Gourmia is redefining the pressure cooker market.” In addition to their own assurances, the company also indicated that the product is certified by ETL, a third party safety certification mark, an important indicator that the product is considered safe.
In addition to the CoolCooker pressure cooker, Gourmia also announced a multicooker (with sous vide capability) with food cooling capability. Interestingly, the company first announced a CoolCooker multicooker a year ago, but according to Biegeleisen that product did not ship and ultimately evolved into the new GMCC1970 multicooker debuting next week.
The release of Gourmia’s new CoolCookers looks like it might be part of a growing trend towards built-in refrigeration in cooking appliances. In addition to the CoolCookers and the aformentioned Mellow, there’s the new Suvie multi-zone cooking “robot”, which utilizes a unique water-cooling system powered by a compressor based refrigeration unit.
Both of Gourmia’s new products will work with Alexa and Google home and will be available later this year for a price of $199.
We’ll be covering Housewares Show next week. If you have an interesting new product send us more info via our tip line.