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Question: I don't have a bamboo steamer, can I use something else to steam?

Updated: Feb 21, 2021

A: No worries! We never had one growing up and I didn't have one for a long time until recently. You can still steam baos, fish or whatever in any pot with a cover by easily rigging up a heat proof dish to steam your goodies.

All you really need is a covered pot that is wide and deep enough to hold a heat proof dish. It is helpful for the cover to be at least slightly domed so that steam gathering on the cover drips along the edges and not down the middle and onto your food.

I sometimes use my Dutch oven, tall saucepan, medium saucepan or paella pan. Depends on what I am steaming. I have several racks I put on the bottom to elevate my plate above the water. If you don't have one, don't worry! Roll up some aluminum foil into ring and rest your plate on top of that. Just make sure it is about 1/2" or more above the level of the water. You can even criss cross chopsticks to elevate your plate. Make sure to have no less than 1" between your food and the cover too.

Last tip is to make sure you can get your plate or bowl out of your steamer safely. I have a kitchen "claw" thingy that I got from the Asian market. I also use my canning tongs that is for grabbing jars out of boiling water. Another idea is to make a sling from heavy duty aluminum foil to lift the dish out. Make the sling and place on top of the rack, next your steaming dish. Leave the "handles" of the sling to the sides but above your food to lift up the dish when done steaming. The pot and the dish will be hot so BE CAREFUL!

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