Both claim that their method preserves the highest number of nutrients and gives maximum flavour.
Can they both be right?
I found that unfortunately there isn't really any hard data about the nutrients. But what about taste?
I find them to be quite similar in this respect. They're both good for casseroles and soups. Everything you put in the pot ends up tasting the same. Flavours merge; for example, if you put a quartered chicken, a few vegetables, and some stock, red wine and herbs in the pot, the chicken will end up tasting of vegetables, the vegetables will end up tasting of chicken, and everything will be infused with the flavour of red wine and herbs. This is true of both pressure cooking and slow cooking.
Another thing they both have in common is that (depending on the timing) everything becomes very tender. Even cheap, tough cuts of meat become drop-off-the-bone tender, and even woody vegetables like parsnips become about-to-collapse soft.
Finally, they are both cheaper than conventional cooking methods. The slow cooker is cheaper because it draws very little electricity, and even though it is left on for several hours it is comparable to leaving a conventional lightbulb on for several hours, a very different proposition from running an electric oven for several hours. The pressure cooker is cheaper because it only runs for a few minutes, or a few tens of minutes at most, and it runs on the hob. Again this is obviously a lot cheaper than cooking a casserole in your oven for a few hours.
There will be two more articles in this series comparing pressure cookers and slow cookers. The next article will look at differences between the two methods, and the final article will include some of my favourite recipes for them. If you would like to share your favourite recipes, please email them to me. I'd particularly like to hear vegetarian recipes, and recipes that aren't for soups or casseroles.