ThinkstockThinkstockMieleThinkstockMieleMieleThinkstockLe Creuset Round Casserole

Cookware and appliances for healthy food preparation – by Rami Moorosi

One of the negative side effects of modern living is that a lot of people have neglected their health due to unhealthy eating habits. On the other hand, people are realising this fact and are looking for easy and convenient ways to enjoy healthy eating and living.

With the latest cookware and appliances, home owners are finding it much easier to cook and prepare gourmet meals that are not only nutritious but tasty as well.

Cooking with steam

Great tasting food, healthy cooking and ease of use – as a product that combines all these attributes, the steam cooker has secured a rightful place in the modern kitchen over the recent years.

Steam cooking is a way of preparing food that is low in fat and rich in vitamins – this is a claim that is supported by a nutrient analysis carried out by Professor Elmar Schlich at the Giessen University.

Says Mercia de Jager, the product manager for Miele: “Conventional cooking tends to have a leeching effect on food, purging it of a large proportion of water-soluble vitamins and minerals. This is not the case with steam cooking however – Schlich’s study showed that steamed vegetables in particular showed very high concentrations of vitamins, minerals and trace elements, which has an exceptionally positive effect when it comes to releasing the food’s intrinsic taste.”

Grilling and non-stick cookware

The benefits of grilling food are well known: not only does this cooking method add great flavour, but it also reduces the amount of fat your food is cooked in. Le Creuset cast iron skillets and grills, for example, have the benefits of the even-heat distribution and retention of cast iron along with the benefit of the matt enamel surface that transfers heat instantaneously, searing and sealing meat perfectly. The skillets and grills can also be used in the oven.

Ronald Granitzer of Kitchen Passion goes on to add that the Swiss Diamond Cookware has reinforced non-stick cookware. This range requires little to no oil, particularly the grill/griddle, which features a built-in channel to drain away the grease for healthy and reduced-fat cooking.

A great non-stick frying pan that is easy to use and even easier to clean is always a must in a healthy cook’s kitchen; the non-stick surface encourages the use of less fats and oils, and is perfect for those quick breakfasts or easy dinners.

Slow cooking

From curries and stews to soups and more, slow cooking is guaranteed to give you tatsy and healthy food. Cast iron casseroles encourage the cooking of all those healthy and nutritious stews and soups, and are packed with vitamins. “The Le Creuset cast iron casseroles are ideal for this purpose, with its evenly cast sides, base and lid, and heat distribution and retention properties,” explains Ben Paine, the managing director of Le Creuset South Africa. This range of cookware can easily be left on a low heat on top of your stove or inside your oven, giving you time to carry on with your day to day duties, without having to worry about continuously checking up on your food.

Juicers and blenders

For fresh, tasty and nutritious food, consider getting a juicer. Juice extractors provide another convenient way to increase your daily intake of fruit and vegetables. Blenders are another option for healthy eating and these are great for home-made smoothies and also allow you to puree your own hummus or soups.

Other appliances

Pressure cookers, for example the Demeyere pressure cooker available from Kitchen Passion, provides fast cooking and steaming that preserves the vitamins and nutrients of your food.

Another product worth considering is a kitchen scale so that you can weigh portions to ensure you are getting the correct quantities of food during each meal.

The ADE digital kitchen scale, for example, “is recommended by dieticians for people that follow recipes,” explains Ronald. He also recommends the Swiss Bamix to whip up much healthier sauces, dips, mayonnaise and dressings rather than ready- made from supermarkets, which contain preservatives.

With the right cookware and appliances such as steamers, blenders, grills and more, healthy living has been made easy.