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Objective: Students will be able to demonstrate how to prepare party foods in the pressure cooker, while saving time and effort.

Equipment and Supplies: Pressure Cookers and Instruction Manuals (One for each student group) · Timers (One for each student group) · Copies of "Presto: A Party! Recipes" · Various cookbooks.

The Lesson: Busy lifestyles leave little room for lavish entertaining. Pressure cooking can help harried hosts make entertaining elegant, yet easy; fancy, yet fast. Pass out copies of the handout, "Presto: A Party! Recipes". Since regional and ethnic foods are one of today's most exciting entertainment trends, have students each choose a regional menu that they would like to build a party around.

Assign each student the task of planning a complete party around the menu they select. Include decorations, music, table settings, and centerpieces. Have them prepare a time table, estimating how long each phase of the preparation will take and listing tasks in order of when they should be done.

Next, have students consult various cookbooks to discover the time it would take to cook similar dishes using other cooking methods. Lead a discussion on how much time and effort can be saved by using the pressure cooker for entertaining.

Activity: Have students choose a menu for an in-class party to celebrate the completion of the pressure cooking study unit. Divide the students into groups. Assign several groups the task of cooking the various dishes on the menu (adjust quantities for class size). Assign other groups to provide decorations, music, table settings, and centerpieces to create a festive and authentic atmosphere for the party.

Worksheet: Presto: A Party! Recipes

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