Tips & Techniques

5 Smart Ways to Use Your Microwave (Other Than Reheating Leftovers)

5 Smart Ways to Use Your Microwave (Other Than Reheating Leftovers)
Tips & Techniques

5 Smart Ways to Use Your Microwave (Other Than Reheating Leftovers)

News Tips & Techniques 5 Smart Ways to Use Your Microwave (Other Than Reheating Leftovers)

Here's the deal: Your microwave can do a whole lot more than you think it can. But if you have Anyday cookware at home, our guess is that you've figured that out already! Maybe you've even run through all 100+ recipes on our site, even, and are actively seeking out new ones to try. 

 

Well, for those on an insatiable quest for new recipes to make in the Anyday, let us let you in on a secret. There are a bunch of cooking techniques that can be executed perfectly in the microwave, with the right equipment. (Did we mention the right equipment is Anyday?) Once you know which techniques to look out for, you can adapt pretty much any recipe that includes them to the microwave. All it takes is a little know-how and trial and error (and we're here to help you figure out where to begin!).  

 

So if you're wondering how to make a particular dish in your Anyday, look for one of the following cooking terms as a starting point:

 

1. Steam

Your microwave is essentially a super efficient steamer (we'll explain why below). The best part about it, though, is that you don’t need to set up a special apparatus or wait for water to come to a boil. Simply add your ingredient of choice (i.e. grains, proteins, veggies) to the Anyday, cover, pop up the knob, and set your timer.

 

Let's go with a vegetable example, say, broccoli. Microwaves work by vibrating the water molecules in food. Because vegetables are almost 100% water, they absorb microwave energy super efficiently. The moisture within the broccoli will quickly heat up in the microwave, filling the Anyday with steam, tenderizing every floret in a fraction of the time that traditional steaming would take— not to mention you won't dirty an extra pot in the process. You can steam a ton of things besides broccoli (i.e. rice, quinoa, mussels, lobster tails!), but the basic principle remains the same. 

 

Try these recipes: White Rice, Garlic Butter Lobster Tails and pretty much any vegetable.

 

 

2. Parboil/Blanch

As the word suggests, parboiling something means to "partially boil." It's a technique used to shorten the cook-time of something that you plan to continue cooking an additional way. I.e. you can parboil Brussels sprouts or potatoes on the stovetop and then roast them in the oven until crispy.

 

Similarly (but also differently!), blanching is briefly boiling something and then plunging it into very cold water to halt the cooking process. One major problem with blanching veggies the traditional way is the carryover cooking that results. But the great thing about microwave cooking is that when the cook time is up, the cooking process stops much faster, and you’re left with vegetables that are crunchy and tender instead of limp and mushy. Fun fact: Microwaving also preserves more nutrients than conventional cooking methods!

 

Try these recipes: Mashed Potatoes and Balsamic Charred Brussels Sprouts

 

 

3. Boil/Simmer

Think about how long it takes for water to boil on the stove (plus all the penalty time added from watching the pot!). With the microwave, you cut out all the waiting and get right to the action. While you can't necessarily drop a pound of spaghetti into your Anyday, you can make certain pasta dishes, one-pot dinners that might typically take hours to simmer, and even Lowcountry seafood boils.

 

 

4. Poach

Are you noticing a theme here? Hello liquid-based cooking terms! Poaching takes place when you cook something in a small amount of simmering liquid — whether that's water, broth, dashi, or coconut milk. We love poaching in the Anyday so much that we have recipes for poached breakfast, lunch, dinner, sides, and desserts! Keep an eye out for this technique in other recipes and you'll be microwave poaching like a pro.

 

 

5. Toast

While it might seem counterintuitive, you can actually achieve toasty perfection for certain things in the microwave. Take nuts for example: Rather than toasting them the old fashioned/ hands-on way, i.e in the oven or in a skillet, you can toss them in your Anyday along with a small amount of oil, cover, and microwave uninterrupted for 3 minutes. You'll start to smell that familiar toasted nuts aroma. Cook for another minute, stirring intermittently, and you'll have snacks and salad toppers for days.

 

Try this recipe: Toasted Nuts

 

The takeaway? If you're looking for more Anyday recipes, all you have to do is search for any recipe with these words (welll, almost any), and we'll help you adapt it. We're serious! Message us on Instagram with a specific recipe and we'll steer you in the right direction.