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Which pressure cooker is better?

Fagor Duo Pressure Cooker, 8 Qt. or Fagor Futuro 6-Qt. Stovetop Pressure Cooker?

I've never owned a pressure cooker before and I think I've narrowed it down to these two. I'll mostly use it for dried beans and meats. I'd also love to use a lower pressure setting for fish and veggies.

Any info on either of these would be great! Thanks!

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  1. Fagor Futuro is supposed to be the better line and has the more compact handles that allow for easier storage and stovetop use. I've talked about this in prior threads, but highly recommend the two-piece set that includes 4 and 6 quart w/interchangeable lid and steaming basket. You can get it from Amazon.

    1. I don't own either of those two but, currently own 4 different models. I really like my Kuhn Rikon and WMF. Both are pricier European imports but, they have proven to be a good investment. Be sure to read this thread:
      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/737575

      1. I don't know anything about the brands of pressure cookers you are interested in, but make sure they are stainless steel and not aluminum.

        1. Not sure why you're comparing a 6-quart in one Fagor line to an 8-quart in another, but perhaps it's an issue of price (the Futuro line being more expensive than the Duo line). If so, my advice would be to determine which size would best serve your needs, then decide how much you're willing to spend. Personally, I find the 5- to 6-quart size to be the most useful: it easily holds enough food for 4 to 6 servings (which is what I normaly make), or up to a pound of dried beans. My 8-quart cooker, which I bought because the price was too good to pass up (!), gets used occasionally for stock; but I could easily get along without it.

          1. I've been researching Fagor pressure cookers too and I really don't think there's a difference in performance between the Duo and the Futuro, it's just a matter of the pot shape, handle design and price. Both have the dual pressure settings. All that I've read says that 6 quart is the most common family size but you might consider the 8 if you want to make stock or larger quantities. When I saw a 6 quart Rapida in a store I thought it looked kind of small. I'm leaning towards the Elite set (8 & 4 quart)...I don't think I'd use the lower pressure setting.

            6 Replies
            1. re: Jeri L

              Jeri, my 8-quart cooker is actually part of the same Fagor Elite set that you're considering. Though I rarely use the larger pot, the 4-quart one sees a lot of action. With its wide diameter and relatively low sides, it's like a pressure saute pan--great for browning ingredients before pressuring, cooking large but flattish cuts of meat (such as brisket), etc. If you like that shape, and the 8-quart pot isn't too large for you, it's an excellent choice. I've never felt the need for a lower pressure setting. In fact, my Kuhn-Rikon has two settings and I only use the higher one.

              1. re: Miss Priss

                Thanks for that info! I liked that set because of the saute pan style of the smaller pan and I'm happy to hear that it works like I hoped it would. I want to see (and heft!) the 8 quart in person before I make my decision, but I think it'll be the one. I like to make big batches of chili, stew and soup so I can freeze some...though perhaps once I can make them all faster I won't feel that need!

                1. re: Miss Priss

                  Hey, I'm glad to read this. Mr. Rat got me a 4-quart Fagor Elite for Christmas. Not that I wouldn't have had fun with it anyway, but it's good to know that a pressure cooker maven likes this model. Now to figure out how to actually use the darn thing. I know these new ones are safer than the old ones - but I knew how to cook in those and this one, not so much.

                  1. re: ratgirlagogo

                    I think the main safety improvement is a lid interlock, one that keeps you from opening the lid while there still is pressure inside. I have two Prestos from the late 1970s. One has this interlock, the other does not. But if you if you make a habit of not trying to open the lid while the weight is still in place, this shouldn't be a problem.

                    The placement of the safety valve might be better on newer ones, but I'm not positive about this. Prestos have a plug in the lid that blows out when there is too much pressure. On the Fagor, there's a gap in side of lid. In an overpressure situation, the main gasket bulges into this gap, releasing pressure in slower way.

                    But the main difference that I've noted between a Fagor Elite and a Presto is how pressure is controlled. While I'm getting the hang of the Fagor, I still prefer the rocking weight of the Presto. The speed of the rocking tells me whether heat is right or not. If it is rocking too fast, lower the heat; if not rocking at all, up. The Fagor does not give me a very clear signal as to when the heat is right. The yellow button just tells me that the lid is locked.

                    I beginning to realize that audible signals are quite important to me when cooking. I judge the rate at which something is frying largely by sound.

                    1. re: paulj

                      That's the thing about the Fagors--you have to learn the difference between a lazy hiss (not up to full pressure, even though the button is up), friendly hiss (at pressure) and angry hiss (need to turn the heat down).

                      1. re: Jeri L

                        Very well explained! I lower the heat to a simmer (slower hiss) after bringing it up to pressure when I make chicken stock. I like a slower hiss for lighter color chicken broth. I use the stove burner with 2 heating elements. I can bring up the pressure more quickly on high, and I have the option of backing it off more fully.