Steam-Cooked Delicacies From Across the Globe

Published: 30th July 2015 05:05 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th July 2015 05:05 AM   |  A+A-

What do idlis, Kozhakattais and dimsums have in common? They’re all made using the same technique — steam cooking.   It is one of the easiest and an all-purpose method for cooking meat, poultry, fish, vegetables, fruits and even pasta. Heat from the steam is considered to be gentle and uniform as it slowly diffuses through the food and let the food cook in its own juice, minimising loss of nutrients and retaining its texture, colour and flavour.

chef.jpgMost of the cuisines use this method and it features across cuisines, namely French and Mediterranean cuisines, and it is highly prevalent in South East Asian and Indian cuisines also.

Today, innumerable cuisines adopt this style, perhaps owing to easy techniques.

A few famous Asian steamed dishes are Hargaw, Char Shu Bao (barbeque pork bun), egg tart, Thai fish steamed with chilli and lime (Plah Neung Manao), steamed cabbage roll, banana leave sticky rice (khao tom mud). There are also some Indian Classics like idlis, kozhakattai, dhokla, modak and patra ni macchchi. There is a popular Mexican steamed dish called tamales, while French and Italian cuisines feature dishes such as steamed mussels, steamed broccoli, steamed artichokes and asparagus, cous cous, fish en papilote.

One of the cuisines that use steam-cooking techniques is Cantonese, but it is not very popular in the city because most of the Cantonese dishes are little bland. This style of cooking uses steaming and stirs fry cooking.

Spices are used sparingly to avoid used overwhelming the flavours of primary ingredients.

Some well-known Cantonese dishes are all kinds of dimsums, stir fry greens, sweet and sour pork, char shu prok, wonton soup, Yeung chow fried rice, steamed egg custard, etc.

 — Chef Tenzin Namkha, Chef de Cuisine - Chap Chay, Rain Tree

Steamed Baby Pok choy with Sesame garlic tossed Shitake


  • Baby Pokchoy- 150gms
  • Shitake Mushroom- 50 gms
  •   Chopped Garlic- 5gms
  • Light Soy sauce-  5ml
  •   Dark Soy sauce-5ml
  • Mushroom Oyster sauce-5ml
  • Vegetable stock-30ml
  • White pepper powder-1tsp
  •   Salt-1tsp
  • Cooking Wine-3ml
  • Corn flour- 10gms
  • Spring Onion-10gms
  • Sesame seed-5gms



  • First cut the pokchoy into wedges and clean it properly and keep aside
  • Cut the shitake mushroom in big shredded
  • In a plate, arrange the baby pochoy and steam for 4 to 6 minutes
  • In the meantime, take a wok add oil, sauté the garlic add mushroom oyster sauce, soy sauce and shitake mushroom, tossed it nicely and add vegetable stock. Then add the salt, white pepper powder and check the seasoning, thicken the sauce with corn flour and finish with cooking
  • Take out the pok choy from the steamer and remove the water from the plate
  • Pour the mushroom sauce on top of the steam pok choy
  • Garnish with chop spring onion and sesame seed and serve

Steamed Jumbo Prawn with Spicy Xo sauce


  • Whole Jumbo Prawn:  4no
  • XO sauce- 20gm
  • Chilli Oil-5ml
  • Light Soy sauce-5ml
  • Chicken Seasoning Powder-3mg
  • Sesame oil-3ml
  • Satay Stick-4no.
  • Scallion julienne for garnish-15 gms



  • First remove the shell from the prawn and make slit on middle of the back to expose the dark vein and pull out the vein
  • Wash prawn in running water and clean the prawn head properly
  •   Marinate the prawn with XO sauce, chilli oil, seasoning, soy sauce and sesame oil, keep in fridge for 1 hour to catch the marination
  • Then skewer the Prawn with help of satay sticky
  • Arrange the skewer Prawn in serving plate and steamed for 8 to 10 minute
  •   Garnish with little XO sauce on top of each prawn and sprinkle some scallion
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