Steaming is for tender foods. Steaming is using boiling water to steam your foods by slow cooking them. Basically boil water in any pot or pan with a tightly fitting cover. The food is put in bowl or steaming tray above the water and it is cooked by the steam. Steaming is usually done using a steaming pot but can be put in a saucepan with a lid using a steaming tray or a skillet using a bowl. Foods that may be steamed include fish or vegetables. Steaming allows the food to maintain its flavor.
Stewing is a method of cooking using little water and slow cooking. It is a great way to cook cheaper tougher meats for a longer period of time rendering them easier to eat and more flavorful. Stewing can be done in a stew pot or skillet with a lid so that the heat and steam are maintained inside making the meat more tender. It has the advantage of being cooked slowly and without constant care.
Boiling foods like steamed foods are for foods that are tender. Vegetables need to be cooked by putting them into boiling water to cook them fast so they maintain their flavor and minerals. Meats should be put into cold water and brought to a boil. Once the water boils the temperature needs to be lowered until the water is simmering which is when the water is barely bubbling with a little steam. A saucepan is great for boiling foods.
Roasting is for cooking in the oven on a lower heat and adding a little fat to prevent burning and add flavor. Roasting is usually done with meats in the oven with a Dutch oven. Roasting is a great way to cook your meats and vegetables together and keep the flavor.
Grilling is a method of cooking over an open flame using charcoal or gas. It is great for meats and vegetables as it sears in the flavor and actually cooks the fats out of the meats. A grill pan is best for this method of cooking.
Baking is best for cakes, breads, pastries and casseroles. Baking is done in the oven in baking dishes, casserole dishes, pie pans, and on cookie pans. Make sure to cook the food all the way through without burning the outside. It helps to have an oven that is capable of a constant heat at all times.
Frying is on of the most popular methods of cooking. It is done on top of the stove in a skillet, sauté pan or a wok. using varying amounts of oil, fats or grease. The different types of frying include dry frying where no fats, grease or oils are heat used and the foods are cooked over a low heat until browned. Shallow fat frying is done with just enough fat, grease or oil to cover the pan tp prevent the food from sticking, It is usually used for eggs, pancakes and vegetables. Deep frying is the other method of frying. This method requires the food to be cooked in at least 2 inches of heated grease, oils or fats. It is used to fry chicken, potatoes and many other foods.
Cooking is fun when you use the proper method and the correct pot and/or pan. Enjoy creating tasty, healthy, properly prepared meals.