While some believe that vegetables should be steamed in the traditional way, Barbara Kafka, author of the book “Microwave Gourmet” (William Morrow, 1987), says that microwaving vegetables is better. “Their colour is better, their flavour is better, you have no water dripping, and there are studies that show they retain more vitamins,” shares Barbara. Here are some tips on how to cook vegetables using your commercial restaurant equipment.
Step 1: Prepare Your Vegetables
Depending on the item, cutting each vegetable into small, even pieces is the best way to go. If possible, try to cook each vegetable separately to avoid overcooking or undercooking your vegetables. However, if you’re in a real crunch and need to cook all your vegetables at the same time, make sure to mix them together after your vegetable prep.
Step 2: Arrange Your Vegetables on a Microwave Safe Plate
Be sure to always check that your microwave cookware is microwave safe before cooking. Metal objects and some plastics can’t be used in a restaurant oven as they can cause an explosion or malfunction within the microwave. If you are cooking different-sized vegetables together, arrange them so that the largest vegetables are around the outside of the dish and the smallest (such as peas or corn kernels) are in the middle.
Step 3: Lightly Season Your Vegetables
Seasoning any dish helps to bring food to the next level and takes your guests on a flavour journey. Avoid heavy seasoning, however, as a little bit of salt and pepper and a pinch of spices or herbs will be more than enough. Depending on the types of vegetables you are cooking, you also want to add a little bit of water to help with the cooking process (anywhere from two tablespoons to ½ cup).
Step 4: Cook Your Vegetables in Your Commercial Microwave
Cover your microwave dish using the lid or plastic wrap. Depending on the type of vegetables you are cooking, microwave for 1 ½ – 3 ½ minutes, or until tender and crisp. Don’t forget to check the vegetables halfway through the cooking time and turn them over. Once done, carefully remove the lid or plastic wrap to allow the hot steam to safely escape.
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