Using a Microwave 3 Tier Steamer

Once Upon a time, not too many years ago, I bought myself a microwave two tier steamer. It stood in my cupboard for God knows how long and I thought, l am not going to use it, as I don’t really want to cook in the microwave.

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But, one day I needed to cook some broccoli quickly, as I had forgotten to cook them and my dinner guests were waiting. I thought “Oh well I’ll give it a try in the steamer”. The broccoli was already split into florets, so I put some water with some salt in the lower basin, I placed the washed broccoli in the first tier and put the steamer lid on, placed the steamer in the microwave for 3½ minutes on full heat. And you won’t believe it, but it was crunchy, it was cooked, it was lovely. I was surprised and nobody noticed, they just thought I was re-warming the broccoli.

Since then, I have experimented with the steamer and it also worked extremely well with carrots, leeks, cauliflower, sweetcorn washed and wrapped in kitchen towel, and my latest Steamed Salmon steak.

My meal off today is a piece of salmon, with carrots and leeks all in the steamer at the same time or served from the steamer within 4-3½ minutes served with a little melted butter.

This is how to make the salmon dinner:

  • 200-250g Salmon steak
  • A piece of baking paper
  • 1 portion Carrots, peeled, Julienned and rinsed
  • 1 portion Leek, cut in 1cm rings and rinsed
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp butter for serving
  1. In the bottom tier: Half fill with water and add the salt.
  2. in the 1st tier: place the carrots and leeks (not mixed).
  3. In the 2nd tier: place the salmon skin down on top of the cut baking paper (slightly bigger than the salmon).
  4. Add a pinch of salt and pepper to the salmon.
  5. Then put the steamer together place the steamer lid on top and place it in the microwave.
  6. Microwave on full power for 3½-4 minutes.

Serve with the butter. That’s it. Enjoy.

If you just want to steam the salmon on its own, place the salmon in the 1st tier and steam for 2½ -3½ minutes depending on the thickness of the salmon.

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About Chopped/Sliced/Diced Onions

I was watching the Hairy Biker in USA one morning while eating my breakfast.
One of their tips was to place the cut/chopped onions in ice water, to make them less potent.

I hadn’t heard that one before, so I Googled it and yes that’s a fact.

  • Is there a way to tame the raw onions bite as they seem to be everywhere especially in summer and salads?
  • There is, and it’s simple: soak them for 30 minutes in cold water.
  • How long can I keep raw onions?
  • Sliced, cut or diced raw onions can be stored in the fridge for up to 10 days.
    Simply wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or keep them in a resealable bag.

About the common Onion

  • The abrasive quality in onions comes from the sulphur compounds, which are neutralized when onions are heated. But water can have a similar effect as it dissipates many of the compounds, and thus reduces their pungency. Just leave the onions in the water for ten or so minutes, and you’ll have remarkably less intense onions. You can also soak them in vinegar or citrus juice to add a new flavour to the onions.

Coat Them in Salt

  • For those that don’t want the crispiness of water-soaked onions, salting them can eliminate some of the sting while also giving them a softer texture. Simply coat cut onions in a generous pinch of salt, and let them sit for 15 minutes; this will draw out much of the moisture, and some of the compounds that result in the pungency. Afterward, you can wipe/shake off the excess salt if you desire.
  • This is also my tip for dynamic salad dressings; salt some chopped shallots, as the moisture will infuse the dressing with a mild onion flavour.

Add Vinegar or Water & Microwave

  • If you don’t want to wait the 10-15 minutes for the other tricks, this is the quickest route: put the chopped onions in a bowl with some water or vinegar, add some salt, and throw them in the microwave for ten seconds. Voilà!
  • For a compromise between raw and cooked, one advice is to cook the chopped/sliced/diced onions in water on the stove for a minute or two on high heat, which will eliminate the intensity while retaining the raw texture.

And if you simply don’t like onions, don’t worry:
there are plenty of alternatives, but I’m not covering that topic.

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