Understanding Convection Steam

Twenty years ago 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

Steaming

vegetables, grains, seafood,  poaching chicken, fish and eggs and cooking hard or soft boiled eggs

Braising

without having to use a heavy covered pan

Low Temperature Roasting

for lean tender cuts of meats, fish, and poultry with a final burst of high heat

​*Additional function include:

 

Reheating foods

Defrosting

Making Yogurt

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.

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