I’ve always relied on my trusty oven to bake cakes, cupcakes, muffins and pies. However, even without an oven, it’s possible to bake pastries by using a steamer.
Steaming is a method of cooking over moist heat. The food to be steamed is placed in a container above a pan of boiling or simmering water. The hot steam which the water emits then cooks the food in the designated amount of time needed.
Often steaming is used for cooking seafood, vegetables, dumplings and dim sum. But it can also be used for cooking pastries. One of the most popular pastries that employs the steaming method is leche flan. Another is the Christmas plum pudding.
Thanks to Maya Kitchen, it’s now also possible to ‘bake” a moist, yummy butter cake, a chocolate cake and a healthy banana cake even without an oven. This variant of Maya’s cake mixes is labeled Oven Toaster Cake—because they’re designed to be baked in a toaster oven—but you can steam the cake instead (instructions are on the back of the package).
Indeed, Maya’s cake mixes make it so convenient. Just pour the mixed batter in an eight-inch by three-inch round cake pan or a nine-inch by two-inch round cake pan (the size that will fit in a large steamer), place it in a steamer, and in 10 to 15 minutes you’ll have a delicious cake. I tried this using Maya’s Oven Toaster Butter Cake Mix and the Chocolate Cake Mix, and couldn’t believe how easy it was. When the summer heat is at its worst, being able to “bake” a cake that fast is truly a blessing.
The butter cake is so buttery and moist (especially with a whipped cream frosting), you may want to make two of them, in case people ask for seconds, or if you have a large crowd to feed.
Maya’s Butter Cake in a Steamer
Water, for the steamer
¼ c (4 Tbsp) softened butter
½ c water
1 200-g pack Maya Oven Toaster Butter Cake Mix
Pour enough water into a steamer and bring the water to a boil. Meanwhile, brush a round eight-inch by three-inch baking pan or a round nine-inch by two-inch baking pan with shortening or butter, or spray the baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pan with nonstick baking paper so the cake will be easier to release later on. In a bowl, mix the butter, eggs, water and Maya Oven Toaster Butter Cake Mix with a wire whisk or a wide spatula until the mixture is smooth and well blended. Pour into the prepared baking pan and cover the pan loosely with aluminum foil. When the water in the steamer is boiling, carefully place the cake pan on the top part of the steamer (above the boiling water).
Cover the steamer and let the cake steam for 10 to 15 minutes or until a cake tester inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Let cool then run a knife or spatula around the sides of the cake to make it easier to release. Insert a wide spatula between the cake and the baking paper and transfer the cake to a serving platter. Makes about six to eight servings.
If desired, frost the cake with a whipped cream frosting or sprinkle the top with confectioner’s sugar.
If you use a 9” x 2” round baking pan, the cake will not be as high as a cake cooked in an 8” x 3” baking pan.
Be sure the cake pan is high enough above the boiling water so the water won’t reach it.
If you don’t have a cake tester, just use a clean barbecue stick.