How to Steam Vegetables

How to Steam Vegetables
The goal here is to have your vegetables perfectly cooked and ready to serve just before you sit down. And, ideally, all of the vegetables finish cooking at the same time. Here's how you do it.
  • Any vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, potatoes, green beans, peppers
  • Cutting board
  • Chef's knife
  • Small saucepan with lid
  • Steamer basket
  • Paring knife
  1. Cut the vegetables - Cut the vegetables into uniform bite-sized pieces, the way you plan to serve them. Smaller pieces will also cook more quickly than larger pieces.
  2. Add water to the pan and insert the steamer basket - Add 2 - 4 cm of water to your saucepan. Insert the steamer basket. The surface of the water should be under the basket; pour out some water if necessary.
  3. Bring the water to a boil - Bring the water to a boil over high heat. When you hear the water bubbling and see steam starting to emerge from the pot, it's ready.
  4. Add the vegetables, cover and reduce the heat - Scatter the vegetables over the steamer basket. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to medium.
  5. Steam the vegetables - Start checking the vegetables after a few minutes. Tender vegetables, like broccoli and asparagus, will cook in just a few minutes. Harder vegetables, like carrots and potatoes, will take longer. Smaller pieces will also cook more quickly than larger pieces.
  6. Vegetables are done when tender - The vegetables are done when you can easily pierce the thickest part of the vegetable with a paring knife. Most vegetables are also bright and vibrant in colour when ready. Stop steaming when the vegetables still have a bit of crunch to them — they will finish cooking in the residual heat.
  7. Serve the vegetables - Use the vegetables as directed in your recipe. For a simple side dish, toss the vegetables with a little olive oil or butter, salt, and a squeeze of lemon.
Spinach and Arugula - 3 minutes
Peas - 3 minutes
Broccoli Florets, Cauliflower Florets, Green Beans - 5 to 7 minutes
Carrots, Potatoes, Turnips, Squash - 8 to 20 minutes
Kale and Collards - 10 minutes

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