Product Type: Morphy Richards electrical appliances
Newest Review: ... but certainly not 4 adults. I've only ever used it for 2 adults and it was fine for us. While Morphy Richards advertise the 8.2L cap... more
Eat proper meals without standing over the cooker all the time
Morphy Richards 48780 IntelliSteam Steamer
Member Name: theshoes
Morphy Richards 48780 IntelliSteam Steamer
Advantages: Takes the hassle out of tasty home cooked foods
Disadvantages: Maybe a bit large and can be fiddly to clean if your not careful
My wife and I had eyed this up for a good while before we bought it after having been put off of steaming foods with the hassle we've had with steamers in the past. We'd had the "old fashioned" three tier steamers in both the electric variety and the on the hob pot variety but it all came down to the same thing - the general fiddling around trying to work out timings and which food should be on what level and on and on; which generally makes it easier to use more pots and leave the steamer gathering dust somewhere...
But we decided to try and eat healthier (in other words the wife wants me to eat more veg!) and after looking at the manufacturers description and some reviews we decided to have a punt as it were.
We went for the store purchase option, simply for the comeback if there was anything wrong, and we like to have insurance on things (something Amazon still lacks on) so we purchased it for £70 out of Currys and paid £15 for a three year no quibble guarantee. So off we set with our new toy to see what we could make...
Out of the box assembly is child's play - base unit, drip tray and two large compartments, one of which is split into two with a divider, essentially giving you three separate "cooking" areas. There is also a rack for separating the larger area (so you could cook double the chicken for example by using the extra layer) a rice cooking tray and two sauce trays (which we've found work superbly for cooking more rice if you have guests coming round or a big family). There's a clearly marked water fill line in the base unit, a water level indicator (essentially a clear plastic panel in the base unit), a low water level alarm and a handy little lip that flips out to allow you to top up the water if needs be.
Unlike many modern kitchen appliances the guide that comes with the intellisteamer is actually very in depth and tells you the cooking times you need to steam the majority of most popular meats, veg, rice and pasta and we've only found a need to tweak the times on a few thing to suit our personal preferences and the results have been nothing short of excellent.
But the thing that sets this apart from other steamers in my opinion is the separate compartments it has and the ability to time things to perfection. With the three compartments you can easily fill the steamer with what you want to cook, set the times, press the button and walk away until the timer starts beeping. There's no adding the next level if it's time for the broccoli to go on, or lifting the tray with the potatoes off and sticking the meat underneath as the potatoes take longer but the meat would drip onto the potatoes - that hassle is no longer there with the intellisteamer. You put the foods in their compartments (for example rice at the back, carrots in the front left and chicken in the front right) choose the times for each compartment and press the steam button. Rice (taking longest to cook) will start first and will take about 40 minutes, and the cooking time will count down from 40 until it reaches the next start time (carrots at 30 minutes approximately) which will then start cooking and will continue counting down until the chicken comes on at 18 minutes (all times taken from instruction manual) and when everything has steamed away for its allotted time the steamer's alarm will go off and it's time to dish up and eat. If you're not ready to eat just then though the steamer will keep the food warm for up to minutes making it truly a hassle free cooking solution.
The resulting quality and taste of the food are as impressive as it's hassle saving - other than the occasional miss reading of instructions in terms of volume of foods against steaming times from my part nothing has ever came out of the steamer raw or shriveled up like a prune, the manual gives very clear and detailed instructions and with a little simple maths it's easy to work out what your doing.
One thing that I couldn't leave out of this review is the quality and ease of rice cooking with the intellisteamer. If like me you have an uncanny ability to make rice and the bottom of a pot develop and strong attraction to each other I'd say it's worth buying just for that alone; albeit it would be a very expensive rice cooker!!
Before buying this we had looked at some reviews in various places and one criticism was the difficulty in cleaning the steamer after use. Well I can say from experience that as with any electric steamer the small holes in the plastic steaming compartments can be very fiddly to get into. I have found however if you are cooking meats or anything that leaves residue that the best thing to do is to stick the steaming compartment straight into hot soapy water as soon as you've dished up your food - as with any kitchen task if you let things dry in they can be a nightmare and the little holes in this steamers compartments are no exceptions.
Another thing some may take issue is space. The steamer itself is not small and can take up a lot of space in a small kitchen and when you are cleaning it the steaming compartments, rice trays etc and drip tray do take up pretty much a full drying rack so you need to keep this in mind. I will say however that my wife and I have a very small kitchen and we re-arranged things in order for the steamer to stay out as we use it a lot!
Ease of use
Superb Instruction Manuals
Easily cook full meals with no hassle
Maybe a bit expensive for a steamer
Can be fiddly to clean
However in my opinion the pros as they stand far outweigh the cons and I need to give this item five stars - we both work and don't have a lot of time to cook. We can come home, bung stuff in the steamer press the button and go get ourselves ready to eat, no more standing in the kitchen stirring or watching the clock.
Summary: Wouldn't buy any other steamer