- Food and Cooking
Tips For Steaming
Steaming is a method of cooking with steam from boiling water. Unlike boiling the food does not come into contact with the boiling water thus retaining nutrients in food and preventing instances of HACCP. Steaming unlike Frying does not require special skills but it pays to do it right. And to do it right, here are 12 tips to help you. Steaming can be done in a wok, a bamboo steamer, an electric steamer or even in an ordinary colander.
Tips for steaming
1. When steaming food, the steamer should be covered tightly so that the steam can circulate and cook the food.
2. Although steamed foods are not attractive, it is healthier as compared to other methods of cooking, therefore garnish steamed foods before serving. You can season the cooking liquid so that it infuses the food with flavor. You can add a bouillon cube when you are steaming vegetables, or use stock or wine when steaming fish. You can also add dry herbs and spices to the liquid, or rub it directly on the ingredients. For savory dishes use grated ginger, chili, cumin and coriander and for sweet dishes use nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon.
3. Time for steaming varies depending on the type of food being steamed so to prevent overcooking, know the cooking time for the food you want to steam.
4. If you are using a wok, place ingredients in the wok only when the water starts to boil.
5. Maintain enough water for steaming.
6. Preferably keep the steamer one inch above the water.
7. Switch to lower heat when the water starts boiling in order to maintain the steam inside the wok.
8. Avoid droplets of water from dripping onto the foods when lifting up the lid and be cautious as steam causes blisters when it comes too close to your skin.
9. Do not lift the lid immediately you switch off heat. This is to allow heat to steam the food briefly.
10. Cut ingredients carefully. This is because some ingredients takes longer time to cook therefore when steaming cut those vegetables that take longer time to cook into smaller pieces.
11. Do not crowd steamer, allow enough space for circulation of steam.
Steam only the best vegetables because steaming amplifies flavour and a
slight change in flavour can change the taste of the cooked food.