Steam cooking as the name suggests involves cooking vegetables, meats or fruits in steam evolved from boiling water. Steam cooking is considered to be the best method of cooking since there is less loss of nutrients compared to other methods of cooking. Since there is no direct contact with water while cooking, the chances of nutrients being lost are less. The natural color of the vegetables too is retained to a large extent and guess what… since there is either no use or very little use of oil the dishes turn out to be extremely healthy. The time taken to steam cook depends upon the quantity of food. Also, meats take a little longer to cook. I have tried some chicken recipes too through this method which came out really well. I will be posting them soon!
- Bhindi/Okra 250 gm
- Mustard seeds ½ tsp
- Cumin seeds ½ tsp
- Urad dal (Black gram dal) 1 tsp
- Red chili powder ½ tsp
- Salt to taste
- Curry leaves 8 to 10
- Magic Masala Powder 1 to 2 tbsp
- Oil 1 to 2 tsp
Wash and pat dry the okra. Cut as desired. Place in a steamer and steam for about 12 to 15 minutes. Do note that I use the electric cooker to steam. If you have an electric cooker then you can buy a steam basket which is available as an additional accessory. Just pour 2 cups of water into the cooking pan and place the steam basket with the cut vegetables spread evenly over the cooking pan. Cover and turn the rice cooker on. Heat oil in a pan, preferably the nonstick kind. Add mustard and cumin seeds. When they start to pop add urad dal and fry for a little while. Add curry leaves, steamed okra, red chili powder, and salt to taste. Fry for about 8 to 10 minutes. Turn it off and add the Magic Masala Powder. Mix well and cover immediately.
It is advisable to cook vegetables on a high flame for a short while rather than cook on slow flame for a long time.