Courtesy Sur La Table
Last year you bought your favorite food nerd an immersion circulator —a chef-y gadget that takes an entire weekend to cook ribs and turns your kitchen into a laboratory. Oops. This year, instead, get a gift that will speed up the cooking process. A favorite tool of TV chefs competing under the clock, pressure cookers raise the boiling temperature of water, thus reducing cooking time. Stove-top pressure cookers have been the standard for years (including back when they were prone to explosions), but we prefer the new countertop model from All-Clad, which can cut hours out of making stocks, soups, stews and other slow-simmered foods. $300; surlatable.com.