The experts in cooking appliances, Miele, has partnered with two of the UK’s leading chefs – Skye Gyngell and Marianne Lumb to showcase the superior cooking techniques that’s now achievable through steam appliances.
Miele’s philosophy, can be summed up in three easy phrases, Precision and accuracy with its steam appliances, Passion, reflected in its mantra, Immer Besser, which is roughly translated as better and better. Finally, Precision plus Passion can only equal Perfection. And that’s what we all hope to achieve at home, whether we’re cooking a tray of veg or a three-course meal.
Skye launches this series with her top tips, below, and shows how she pairs steam cooking with her signature cooking style with three special recipes.
Put your ingredients before your techniques
Skye Gyngell is renowned for her elegant cooking, both in her London restaurant, Spring, and in her cookbooks. Her distinctive approach to cooking is focused on her passion for the seasons, and her skill is in matching ingredients and flavours that complement each other to create perfectly crafted dishes that taste as good as they look. Be passionate about the raw ingredients and the rest will follow.
Sous vide isn’t just for restaurants or MasterChef kitchens
Skye has made good use in these recipes of a cooking technique usually only seen in restaurant kitchens - sous vide. Miele, have found an innovative way to make this easy to recreate at home, using their built-in and freestanding steam ovens. With an innovative built-in vacuum drawer, you can lock in the flavour, texture and colour of food, without risk of overcooking it – a trick often used by chefs. Sous Vide makes cooking fish easier, for example, and also gives much more consistent results, and is much quicker, which means you can cook food that would usually need a long, slow braise or roast, in a fraction of the time.
Experiment, experiment, experiment
While a top chef may have a brigade of chefs by their side when they’re creating new recipes, with a steam oven you can cook multiple dishes at the same time, mimicking the kitchen army, all by yourself. And, whether you love experimenting with exotic flavours, putting your individual twist on classic recipes or impressing guests with gourmet dishes, it’s easy to achieve great results every time. With a fast heat up time, the ovens release a precise amount of steam, which is distributed evenly so that dishes are cooked at the exact temperature you want from 40-100°C (within one degree) – invaluable for complex recipes or dishes with many steps.
STEAMED ASPARAGUS WITH HOLLANDAISE AND BOTTARGA
5 asparagus spears per person
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
a little extra virgin olive oil
Bottarga, to serve
500ml white wine vinegar
1 tbsp of peppercorns
a bunch of tarragon
3 large free-range egg yolks
200ml melted and skimmed unsalted butter
squeeze of lemon juice
For the hollandaise, boil together the vinegar, peppercorns and tarragon in a small pan - reduce by half. Strain and reserve. Bring a large pan of water to the boil then reduce to a simmer.
Beat together the yolks and 2 tsp of the reduced vinegar in a heatproof bowl that fits snugly over the pan. Beat until the mixture forms a foam (don't let it overheat) slowly pour in the butter in small additions whisking well after each - until all the butter is incorporated and you have a consistency that is similar to mayonnaise. Finish with a squeeze of lemon juice.
Steam the asparagus until they are firm to the bite but cooked through. No more than a couple of minutes. Remove from the oven and season with a little salt and pepper and a lick of extra virgin olive oil. Arrange on a plate, spoon over the hollandaise and finish with a generous grating of bottarga. Serve at once.
COD WITH SEAWEED, COURGETTE FLOWERS AND CUCUMBER
250ml single cream
100g fresh seaweed
5 small Middle-Eastern cucumbers
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
drizzle of olive oil
drizzle of white wine vinegar
6 courgette flowers
6 cod fillets, filleted and skinned
For the butter sauce
Infuse the double cream with a third of the seaweed overnight in the fridge. The following morning strain the cream getting rid of
the seaweed. Beat the cream with an electric whisk until it splits, discard the liquid and press firmly the solids with a cloth.
Keep refrigerated until needed (you will need in total 250g of butter).
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 glass of dry white wine
12 black peppercorns
A couple of sprigs of fresh thyme
1 shallot, peeled and minced
To make the butter sauce, combine all the ingredients in a saucepan over a medium high heat and reduce until you have about 2 tablespoons left of liquid and strain. Very gently over a medium to low heat start adding the butter to the vinegar reduction a little at a time while whisking constantly, making sure it’s fully emulsified. Check the seasoning and keep warm until needed.
You can make the butter sauce 1 hour before and leave in a warm place in a bain marie.
Slice the remaining seaweed into fine strips and steam in the oven until just soft - set aside in warm place. Slice the cucumbers very finely and season the slices with a little salt and a drizzle of olive oil and white wine vinegar and steam until just wilted but still vibrant. Do the same with the courgette flowers. Season the fish and steam until just cooked through.
Arrange the fish on a plate, spoon over the butter and arrange the vegetables on top.
FARRO TART WITH GARIGUETTE STRAWBERRIES
250g unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
2 whole eggs
zest of 1 unwaxed lemon
1 x vanilla bean, chopped
250g buffalo ricotta
75g candied orange peel
pinch of salt
7 organic egg yolks
Strawberries, to garnish
For the pastry, place flour in a food processor. Add the cubed, chilled butter and sugar. Blitz quickly until butter has broken up. Add the eggs and yolks. As soon as the pastry has come together remove from food processor. Mould together. Wrap in cling film and chill in the fridge.
Roll out the pastry and line a loose-bottomed tart tin. Chill for a further 30 mins.
Heat the oven to 150C. Blind bake the chilled tart case. Meanwhile, cook the farro in water for 40 mins until tender, strain the farro and place in a pan with milk, lemon zest and vanilla pod. Bring to just under the boil then reduce heat and cook until all the liquid is absorbed. Sit in the ricotta until creamy - then add the sugar. Stir gently to combine. Set aside.
Place the cream, sugar and salt in a heavy-bottomed pan. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat and allow to infuse for 5 mins. While the cream is still hot, whisk the eggs in a bowl, add a little cream to the eggs, whisk again, then add the egg mix to the rest of the cream. Pour the custard into the ricotta filling and pour into prepared tart shell. Bake until set (approx 25 mins).
Leave to cool completely before removing from the tin and serving in slices, garnished with sliced strawberries.
Skye used the Miele DGC6660XXL steam combination oven because it’s both easy to achieve the precise, professional results you get from steam cooking, as well the versatility of a conventional oven in one harmonious design.
For more information about Miele and Skye, visit http://derkern.miele.co.uk/