I have been cooking regularly for about 10 years, and have accumulated all sorts of gadgets, tools, pots. Of everything I have or have had, I think the single greatest food making and eating experience enhancing device has been my pressure cooker. In short, what a pressure cooker does is holds in steam, raising the temperature and pressure inside the pot. The result is that food cooks faster-- much much faster. For example, soaked garbanzo beans, which usually cook for 2 or 3 hours, cook in 15 minutes. Potatoes are done in 5. A huge pot of soup cooks in 10 or 15 minutes. Most vegetables are steamed before you can get out a plate. Some people are concerned with the safety of pressure cookers, that they will "explode," and cover the ceiling and walls with food, but the newer cookers have numerous safety functions. The largest drawback is price-- a large top-line model can cost $150, but as an investment it really pays off-- using less gas, making your own beans instead of buying canned, and most importantly, in my opinion, saving huge amounts of time.