I’ve been coveting one of these for the last few years. I couldn’t really prioritize it and I was madly curious about it but there were always other things that were more important. Then, out of the blue, my Mother called and asked if I knew what a steam juicer was and asked how it works.
Then she admitted a dear friend had passed one on to her to give to us!
A steam juicer uses steam to extract the liquid from fruit and vegetables. It’s commonly used for grapes, cherries, rhubarb, apples and more. The pot has 4 parts, starting from the bottom:
- A basin that gets filled with water. As it boils, steam rises to the second pot above it.
- The second pot (a catch basin) has two unique features:
- a spigot (there is a hose and a clamp not pictured that keep the juice inside the pot until you decide to release it).
- A funny structure. Inside the pot looks like a bundt pan (like you’d make a coffee cake with). The bottom is flat on the outer ring but the center has a circular ‘pyramid’ with a hole cut in that allows the smoke to concentrate and raise from the bottom pan.
- A colander. It fits inside the pyramid (it has a solid cap over the hole where the steam escapes) and it is filled with fruit. You load the colander with fruit, add steam and the juice escapes to the catch basin (where you later release it from the spout).
- A lit.
The main disadvantage of using a device like this (compared to a squeezer) is that heat kills many of the enzymes of the fruit. While this is a disadvantage it’s a mute point as juices extracted like this are often canned in a water bath which would kill them as well. Fresh juice will have more health benefits but this will typically be far better than store bought.
Other disadvantages is the heat/ energy used to boil water and the material it is built from (some will absolutely not use this pot since it’s aluminum; more expensive stainless versions are available).
The advantages include:
- It’s easy to use.
- It processes a lot of fruit at once.
- It easily separates juice and solids (which can be dehydrated). The resulting juice is typically very clear.
- It can be used to extract juice from objects that are too solid or too fragile for a juicer (you could technically use this for orange peels or rose petals).
It’s a great accessory for natural juices, cordials, ferments and jellies.
Would you use it? What would you make?