What is Combi-Steam Cooking?
Steam-Baking or Combi-Baking
Breads, casseroles, and delicate egg dishes normally cooked in a water bath benefit from baking with Steam, but it's important to know the basics of baking with Convection to avoid disappointment.
Here are some important tips to know:
Always reduce recipe temperature by 25 degrees
Convection Steam Baking is wonderful for cooking Sweet or Savory Bread Puddings and Custards that are normally cooked in a water bath. The water bath is a genius technique that highlights the benefits of cooking with Steam because it is actually the heat from the water that is cooking the food not the direct heat from the oven which was much harder to control in older appliances.
Convering casseroles when baking in steam is NOT required
vegetables, grains, seafood, poaching chicken, fish and eggs and cooking hard or soft boiled eggs
for breads and casseroles and baking delicate items like custard that are normally cooked in a water bath
for lean tender cuts of meats, fish, and poultry with a final burst of high heat
Understanding Convection Steam
Twenty years ago, Combi-Ovens or Convection Steam ovens, were introduced to the residential appliance market, and since that time they have become a popular choice for the modern kitchen. A Steam Oven is an amazing appliance, but since recipes don’t reference the appliances we cook with, there is a bit of a learning curve to understanding how to make the best use of the oven.
Steam ovens have been an essential tool in high-end restaurant kitchens and commercial food service for many years because the combination of Convection & Steam provided chefs with tools to help in the precise preparation of large quantities of food. Food cooked with steam inhibits cellular breakdown resulting in better flavor, texture, and definitely nutrient value but the most remarkable aspect of a Convection Steam oven is versatility.
I have been asked many times over the past twenty years if there are special recipes for using the steam oven, and the truth is it’s not so much special recipes one needs but rather a clear understanding of cooking terms so that recipes can be easily adapted to cooking in the Steam Oven. There are a few different models of Steam Ovens on the market and while it’s important to learn the specific features of your steam oven, the good news is that the fundamentals for steam oven cooking are the same.
A Convection Steam Oven can be used for
*Additional functions include:
Sterilizing Jars for Canning
Proofing Yeast Dough
Some Steam Ovens also have a Broil element that can be used for browning and toasting and broiling leaner cuts of meat.