Food steamers are generally used to cook vegetables using the steam that is created when the water is boiled. They are ideal for ensuring healthy meals when cooking vegetables, especially since the steam prevents the loss of nutrients and vitamins that can often be lost with simply boiling in a pot. Healthy cooking can help with such conditions as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. It is important to eat healthy for prevention, as well as for treatment of these conditions.
Although cooking vegetables is the most popular use for a steamer, it can be used for a number of other foods such as rice, fish, and other meats. Steaming is a popular method of cooking in the Chinese culture, but is not as widely seen in Western cooking.
Steamers are simple to use, and do not require much supervision. You simply add the water on one layer, the vegetables on an upper level, set the timer, and wait for the steamer to let you know that your vegetables are cooked. Steamers have a timer that will assist to ensure that vegetables are not overcooked, and they generally reduce the cooking time compared to boiling.
Vegetables contain many vitamins and minerals which are good for your nutrition, and a steamer is one of the best ways to ensure you are benefitting from the nutrients of vegetables if you do not wish to eat them raw. The nutrients from vegetables are generally lost in the steam when boiling; but, with a steamer, these nutrients are caught within the steamer and reabsorbed into the food.
Steaming makes it easy to avoid overcooking and burning your food, and it can also assist to reduce the fat intake in your diet by eliminating the need for cooking oil. A steamer is ideal for use when you are trying to plan healthy meals, as they simplify the cooking of vegetables, and they also ensure you are getting more of the valuable minerals and vitamins in those vegetables. Simplicity can be a key factor especially when starting on a weight-loss plan.
Even though not widely used in Western cooking outside of the preparation of vegetables and rice, a steamer can actually help to reduce the fat content in such things as fish, poultry, and beef. A steamer can also be an ideal way to reheat food to ensure that it remains moist and maintains flavor.
There is also a variety of recipes that are available that can be used to make healthy, nutritious meals only using your steamer. It is also possible to add some flavoring when using steaming as a cooking method, such as adding wine, fresh stock, or various herbs and spices.