How to Steam Vegetables Asian Style


Provided you have everything set up correctly and keep an eye on the clock, steaming foods Asian style is one of the simplest cooking techniques you can use to prepare your meals. Although electric steamers make the chore easy, vegetables can also be steamed Asian style using a steamer basket or even a colander. The key is to have enough water boiled at a high temperature, a device to keep the vegetables out of direct contact with the water, and a lid to capture the steam as it rises.

Things You'll Need

  • Vegetables
  • Large pot with lid
  • Steamer basket or colander
  • Water
  • Seasonings
  • Prepare the vegetables for cooking. Wash and pat dry the vegetables. Peel any vegetables, such as carrots, beets or parsnips, and set aside. Cut the vegetables into bite-size pieces, as smaller pieces will steam much faster.

  • Add enough water to fill a large pot 2 inches full. Add seasonings and spice to the water to infuse more flavor into the vegetables; good options include Asian five-spice powder, curry powder, ground cayenne pepper, ground cinnamon or ground ginger.

  • Add the vegetables to the colander or steamer basket. Add the lid to the pot. Heat the pot on medium high and bring the water to a simmer. Add the steamer or colander to the pot and replace the lid.

  • Steam the vegetables until they reach the desired level of doneness. Depending on the size of the vegetables, this will usually be after 10 to 15 minutes.

  • Remove the steamer or colander from the pot. Add the vegetables to a bowl and serve.

Tips & Warnings

  • Steamed vegetables are delicious by themselves, especially if you have seasoned the cooking water. However, you can also toss the steamed vegetables with a light sauce for added flavor. Serve by themselves or atop rice.

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