Pan steaming cooks foods by placing them
directly in a liquid, such as water, broth or court bouillon. There is not
enough water to completely submerge the food, however. This technique is
often used to prepare vegetables.
The steps and methods for ingredients and
equipment is similar to that required for
with the following difference - a tight fitting lid is essential in order
to pan steam foods fully and quickly. Speed is one of this technique's
most valuable assets, since even green vegetables can be prepared quickly
enough that any acids that might have caused discoloration are not allowed
enough time to have any effect.
The amount of liquid required is determined
by the texture of the food being pan steamed. For denser foods, such as
carrots or turnips, you may need more liquid. Delicate items, including
new peas or asparagus tips, may require relatively little liquid.
Steps for pan steaming
Assemble all ingredients and preparations
for pan steaming.
Additional or optional items for flavoring,
finishing and garnishing
Items necessary to prepare the sauce
Since the liquid used in pan steaming is
often discarded, water is the most ordinary choice. In pan steaming, the
addition of aromatics, such as chopped shallots or additional minced
vegetables is common. Once foods are pan steamed, the liquid may be
drained away and a little cream or butter is added to finish the dish.
This is an optional component.
Assemble all equipments necessary for
cooking and serving.
Apart from the usual serving pieces, the
only requirement for pan steaming is a sautoir or rondeau
with a tight fitting lid. Remember that the food should be added to the
pan in a single, even layer. It is important to select a pan that can
comfortably hold the food being pan steamed without crowding.
Bring the liquid to a boil in a pan. If you
are adding any special aromatics, they should be added to the liquid as it
comes to a boil so that they can release their flavors.
Add the food being pan steamed in a single
layer. Some foods, such as peas, may be allowed to pile up in the pan but,
in general, there should be only enough food added so that the liquid
comes up about one-quarter to one-third of the depth of the food, with
enough head room between the tip of the food and the lid to allow steam to
Cover the pan and cook until the food is