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Steam Oven Cooking Your Ultimate Guide for Beginners - Part 1

Steam ovens are remarkable tools that can transform your cooking, no special recipes are required, it’s just a matter of changing the tools you normally cook with. 

Almost any food you can normally blanch, steam or boil in a saucepan can be steamed in the steam oven and delicate foods such as custard, flan and cheesecake do not need to be cooked in a water bath. Jars for canning can be sterilized in steam and the processing can also be done in the steam mode.

Steam dim sum and steamed veggies cooked in the combi oven
Steamed Dim Sum & Steamed Veggies

Meat, fish, poultry,vegetables and baked items especially breads, benefit from being cooked with a combination of convection and steam. Convenience features such as reheating and defrosting, will take longer but, spectacular results are ensured.

What is the Benefit of Cooking with a Steam Oven

Steam ovens cook food with a combination of heat and humidity and in a nutshell, cooking with steam inhibits cellular breakdown which translates to better flavor and better nutrient retention.

Other benefits include, the ability to cook multiple foods at one time with no transfer of flavor and because steam ovens are smaller than traditional ovens, larger roasts such as turkey will cook faster. 

Tips for Steaming in the Steam Oven

Since water boils at 212 F, most steam ovens are preset to this temperature in the Steam mode.

When cooking in a saucepan the pan is typically covered to tray steam and cook the food, however foods do not have to be covered when being cooked in the steam oven.

Tips for Baking in the Steam Oven

When baking in the steam oven be sure to reduce the recipe temperature by 25 F and also to watch the timing. The recipe temperature is reduced when baking because convection heat cooks food from the edge to the center, if the temperature is too high the edges may cook too quickly. Since steam ovens are smaller than traditional sized ovens.

A baking steel or baking stone can be used to form a crisp crust when baking breads and perforated baking forms are ideal when baking French bread.

Casseroles can be baked uncovered in the steam oven and if additional browning is required change the mode to Broil (if your oven has that mode) for the last 5 - 8 minutes of cooking time.

Tips for Roasting in the Steam Oven

Small cuts of meat, fish and poultry can be cooked directly on a rimmed baking sheet or the solid oven pan. However when roasting whole poultry or larger cuts of meat, placing the meat on a rack in a shallow pan will ensure better results. Placing the meat on a rack prevents moisture loss from the heat of the pan and elevating the meat ensures the heated circulating air can cook the meat evenly.

Timing will be faster when roasting larger cuts of meat in a steam oven. A 4-5 lb chicken will take approximately 1 hour to roast, however a 10 lb turkey will cook to an internal temperature of 165 F degrees in approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes. If your oven is not equipped with a meat probe a wireless meat probe is a good investment to avoid overcooking.

Always, factor in resting and carving time when roasting meat and add the side dishes at the appropriate time so they will be ready to serve when the meat is ready to serve. 

To learn about additional features of steam oven cooking, cleaning and maintenance stay tuned for Part 2 coming next Saturday January 20th.


Ready for Steam-Roasting? Try this easy and delicious recipe


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