I got a new "toy" for Christmas! (I probably shouldn't sound so surprised. I might have told Santa exactly what I wanted. In fact, I may have even ordered it myself and told my husband I had made his shopping easy.) :)
I received the Instant Pot ® electric pressure cooker and love it! I've made bean soup in it twice already. And I think I'm going to use it tonight to make chicken.
I'm not going to try to share the exact recipe I used for bean soup, because I was playing with the settings and trying different things each time I made it. You'd have to test different recipes to find out what works for you.
I used half of a bag of dried 15-bean soup each time I made it. The bag is the kind that comes with a seasoning mix. I didn't use the seasoning, though. Most recipes I looked at had you throw that away and use your own spices.
The first time I made the soup, I used a small pack of boneless pork ribs to add flavor and chunks of meat. I first pressure-cooked the meat because it was still a bit frozen. Then I pre-cooked the beans using a short round of pressure cooking. Then I cooked both together to finish cooking the beans. Because I wasn't sure which settings to use, the soup was done at this point, before I ever got to add the chopped carrots and onions. So it wasn't a fail so much as a test run that didn't quite work out as planned. :) Still very tasty!
The second time, I only had some thick-sliced ham lunch meat and a couple of slices of bacon to add. But I changed up my method and was able to sauté the carrots, onion and meats before adding in the pre-cooked beans and water. With this method, I did the final cook on the chili/soup setting and all went as planned.
However, everyone liked the first soup better! So I think having the fattier meat added a lot of flavor. I also think I'll use chicken or vegetable broth next time instead of water for additional flavor.
The beauty of the Instant Pot is that you don't have to pre-soak the beans. You can do a short cook with the beans by themselves to soften them. Then add them to the recipe as already pre-soaked. I've also heard from Pam Hillman that she was able to make soup using frozen chicken breasts. That's one of the reasons I wanted this! I never seem to remember to thaw out meats in time for dinner.
I've loved my pot so far! I look forward to playing with it some more. I'm sure I'll be sharing recipes in the future.