Steam isn’t just an option for your dryer anymore; now brands offer steam in their cooking appliances. Cooking with steam is one of the healthiest cooking methods; so now it’s not just the ingredients you use, it is about the technology too. Let’s understand how steam cooking works first before we delve into how it is one of the healthy cooking methods.
Most equate steam with cooking vegetables but now you can do so much more; you can cook your meats, fish, cakes, bread and casseroles and of course vegetables. For an in-depth explanation of steam cooking, click here for Wikipedia’s definition. Simply, steam envelops the food and exerts no pressure on it, so that the minerals and vitamins are largely preserved.
Steam cooking seems to have gained a lot of attention and appliance manufacturers are following suit, as more of them have introduced steam ovens to their appliance line. Thermador offers an array of steam ovens for true culinary enthusiasts. Thermador shares how their steam ovens work, which is quite similar to other brands.
- The water tank is filled with fresh tap water.
- When the appliance is switched on, a value opens. Water from the tank is delivered into the evaporator dish located at the bottom of the cooking compartment.
- Under the evaporator dish, there is a heating element, which heats up.
- The water in the evaporator dish begins to boil and evaporates.
- The food is enveloped by the steam and cooked gently without pressure.
So what is all the hype about? What are the advantages to cooking with steam and what makes it a healthy alternative?
Barely Any Loss : When steamed, food is not immersed in water, so therefore vitamins and minerals do not leach out. For example, studies have shown that steamed broccoli contains 50% more vitamin C than boiled broccoli.
Low-Fat Cooking: When meat is steamed the fat separates itself from the meat and drips into the baking pan.
Reheating : You can reheat food without losing the original dish’s moisture, textures, and flavours.
Appetizing Appearance : Cooked with steam, foods retain their natural colour. Also, you hardly need to stir or turn the food, which means that even delicate fish dishes retain their shape and do not dry out.
Full Of Flavour : Salt is not needed, as steaming provides naturally flavourful food.
Meal Menu : When cooking with steam you can cook several components at the same time, without the flavours mixing.
Now with those 6 very good reasons, why not choose a steam oven, it will complete your kitchen.
To learn more about how steam is used in different household appliances, read our previous blog The Power of Steam – in your laundry, cooking, dishwasher.
Isabelle Osmar, Your Appliances Expert