Homemade Steamer Basket

Written by g.k. bayne
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Homemade Steamer Basket
Inexpensive steamer basket (series object on white - kitchen utensil steamer image by Aleksandr Ugorenkov from Fotolia.com)

When you see a recipe calling for steam cooking, you may think you have to pass it up if you don't have a steamer basket in your kitchen. Luckily, you can use several alternatives for most steam recipes. These alternatives will utilise other items in your kitchen to create a simple steaming basket.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Large saucepan or stockpot with lid
  • Metal colander or wire mesh strainer
  • Heavy-duty aluminium foil
  • Sharp tipped knife
  • Aluminium pie plate
  • Hammer and nail

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    Use a Colander

  1. 1

    Choose a saucepan or stockpot that you can easily fit the lower portion of your colander or wire mesh strainer into and yet the upper portion of the colander rests on the rim of the pot.

  2. 2

    Fill the pot with several inches of water and bring to a boil.

  3. 3

    Place the colander in the pot and fill with the ingredients you wish to steam.

  4. 4

    Place the pot lid over the food, inside the colander, and steam for the recommended amount of time.

    Use Aluminum Foil

  1. 1

    Cut several layers of heavy-duty aluminium foil approximately 6 inches wider than the pot you will be using to steam the food.

  2. 2

    Fill the pot with several inches of water.

  3. 3

    Stack the sheets of foil together and place them over the rim of the pot. Press and shape the foil around the rim of the pot, making a basket shaped depression of approximately 1 to 1 1/2 inches into the pot.

  4. 4

    Poke a dozen evenly spaced holes into the foil basket using the tip of a sharp knife.

  5. 5

    Bring the water in the pot to a boil, add the food to the foil basket and place the lid on the pot. Steam for the recommended amount of time in the recipe.

    Use a Pie Plate

  1. 1

    Locate an aluminium pie plate, such as one that came with a store-bought pie.

  2. 2

    Use the hammer and nail to make a number of evenly spaced holes in the bottom of the pie plate. A hole approximately every inch is a good amount to make.

  3. 3

    Locate a pot that the pie plate can sit with the rim of the pie plate resting on the rim of the pot.

  4. 4

    Fill the pot with several inches of water and bring to a boil. Add the pie plate, food and cover.

Tips and warnings

  • Always use hot pads when handling hot steamer baskets.
  • When opening a steamer of any kind, open the lid away from you to prevent steam burns to your face and hands.

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