>>DEREK: Hi everybody, Derek with KaTom here
and I’m joined again by Dan Matlack from FSA. Dan wants to tell us about the most effective
way to cook with steam.>>DAN: I sure do. I think one of the bigger
misperceptions out there when you’re cooking with steam is oh, I’ll put it in this great
big pan and cook it really fast. Or, I’ll use a solid pan with a lid so I don’t have
all that steam breaking it down and causing problems or flavor transfer or what have you.
And that is one of the biggest troublemakers in the industry, actually. I can’t think of
how many times we do a demo and everything is fine, then we come back out and we hear
them say how it’s making mush and it’s taking 45 minutes. You know you’re going to find
a big, 6-inch-deep pan. If you use a 6- or 8-inch-deep solid pan,
especially with a lid, on any kind of product – but let’s pick a product with a high moisture
content like broccoli or green beans – and you’re cooking them in a steamer that way,
you’re not heating the product. You’re heating the pan, and the outside of the pan has to
heat up and it’s condensing inside. It’s got to heat the outside of the product, which
now heats the inside, and it’s taking a long time. Now, it’s making its own steam in there,
that’s condensing, and it’s making mush. You’re absolutely making a substandard project, ruining
the texture, and taking 30 minutes to do it. There’s no question.
The best way to cook most products in a steamer is in a 2- to 2.5-inch-deep perferated pan
if possible. There are some exceptions, if it’s got some liquid in it. But even with
meat, put a catch pan underneath. You want as much surface area hit as possible. The
whole idea with steam is to hit the product with the steam. Steam releases all of its
heat as soon as it hits something, so you want it hitting that product all over the
place. And, you’ll have no flavor transfer, either. You could literally, in a good convection
steamer, put frozen carrots, fresh peas, and fresh cauliflower in the same pan and have
no flavor transfer. The steam is hitting the product, condensing, and getting sucked down
the drain immediately. That’s what makes it such an efficient, quick cooking machine.>>DEREK: Great information. Thanks, Dan.
And, if you want to learn more about cooking with steam, visit our Learning Center at KaTom.com.