For those who are looking to level up their kitchen skills, a bamboo steamer offers a more natural way to steam fish and vegetables — and it’s not just for Chinese cooking. Steaming conserves nutrients better than most other types of cooking. Of course, it reduces fat content because no oil is needed to keep the food from sticking to the pan.
I’m going to be honest: The bamboo steamer sounded pretty exotic to me, and I imagined it would more difficult to use. What I found was that it really isn’t difficult. Here’s the down and dirty truth: Because I’m addicted to “fast cooking,” I used to throw frozen fish sticks into the toaster oven. They took about 6 minutes. Now I place refrigerated fillets on Napa cabbage leaves in my steamer. It takes about 6 minutes.
The kicker: I’m moving away from processed food.
This is a huge bonus because prepared and package convenient food means “processed.” Every time you eat processed food, you’re taking a hit of salt, sugar and fat.
You can use a bowl to keep the food from sticking to the bamboo. I prefer the Napa cabbage.
My favorite brand of fish sticks said on the label “lightly processed,” so I thought I was doing well. Then I checked the sodium content, and guess what: it was high. Salt is used to cover up a lot of mishaps in the processed food industry. It gets added to create craving and hook repeat customers. You don’t even realize it’s there, but it’s pulling you back to another purchase.
When I steam, I control the amount of salt, which is creating a heart disease epidemic in the United States.
The end of the frozen fish stick
One more thing: washing. Is cleaning the bamboo steamer more difficult than the toaster over tray. I used to soak the toaster oven tray in water with dish soap and then scrub it with stainless steel scouring pad. It took a tool on my sensitive skin.
Now I use a soap-saturated sponge on the bamboo steamer, rinse thoroughly and let dry. The drying is the tricky point on the bamboo steamer. It has to dry thoroughly or mold or mildew and grow. I have found that if you leave the top off and store it on an open shelf after drying, it’s good.
The net time for cleaning? The bamboo steamer is quicker and easier.
This is my experience with the bamboo steamer. Why don’t you tell me your yours in the comments?
Would you like to buy a 10-inch bamboo steamer? I’m selling to supplement my ministry.