If you consider cooking a labor of love, the reward is the delectable meal that follows. Cleanup afterwards leaves something to be desired, especially when it comes to steaming salmon. Steam bags specifically designed for use in the oven or microwave make cleanup easy. The salmon juices and seasonings are contained inside the bag during steaming, preventing messy drips and splatters. When steaming is over, simply throw the steam bag away -- no cleanup.
Oven and Microwave Steaming
Season the salmon before steaming. Common seasonings include balsamic vinegar glazes; salt and pepper; dill and lemon pepper; and garlic and butter.
Lay the salmon flat inside the appropriate steam bag, sealing the bag afterward. Steam bags accommodate one 16-ounce salmon steak, or two smaller salmon steaks that together equal 16 ounces or less.
If you are using an oven bag, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and set the steam bag in a baking dish. Microwave bag users skip this step.
Set the baking dish on the oven’s middle rack. If you are using a microwave steam bag, you do not need a baking dish -- place the steam bag directly in the microwave.
Steam the salmon in the oven for approximately 20 minutes. Microwave users, set your microwave to full power, steaming for about 3 1/2 minutes.
Slice the bag open with a kitchen knife and test the salmon for doneness by pressing a meat thermometer into the center. The salmon is safe to eat when the internal temperature reading is 145 F.
Remove the salmon from the oven or microwave. If the internal temperature is not quite 145 F after the designated steaming time, leave the salmon in the appliance for longer, checking every five minutes if you're using an oven, and every 30 seconds if you're using a microwave.
- If you are pressed for time, add seasonings to the steam bag along with the salmon. After sealing, massage the steam bag between your fingers to coat the salmon.
- The steam that exits the steam bag is very hot. Step away immediately upon slicing the bag open to avoid burns to your skin.
- Keep the steam bags out of the reach of animals and children to avoid suffocation.
- Discard the steam bag after use -- do not reuse.
- Never use an oven steam bag in the microwave or vice versa.
Jonae Fredericks started writing in 2007. She also has a background as a licensed cosmetologist and certified skin-care specialist. Jonae Fredericks is a certified paraeducator, presently working in the public education system.