Coconut Custard Tarts

Jena Branco, Senior Marketing Specialist, Brand & Marketing Communications, SECL

This gluten-free coconut custard tart recipe is the perfect combination of coconut macaroons and custard in a bite-size treat. A great Passover and Easter dessert!


This is a traditional Portuguese recipe that I inherited from my mother-in-law. What I love about this Pastéis de Coco recipe is the ingredients are readily available in the supermarket and it’s the easiest dessert to whip up. The coconut adds a nice dimension to the custard and also helps create a beautiful golden brown topping. The end product is a delightful but delicious little pastry, great to bring to parties or to enjoy with your afternoon coffee or tea.

These tarts are a perfect spring time dessert. There is no flour used in this recipe so it’s perfectly okay to serve this dessert during Passover. Be aware, as they bake, the batter puffs up and separates into a crispy toasted coconut topping with a sweet smooth custard underneath. As they cool, the centre collapses slightly creating a nest. How fun would it be to add a dollop of jam or chocolate eggs in the centre for the Easter holiday?

I love baking these coconut custard tarts in my Sharp® 24” SuperSteam+™ Superheated Steam and Convection Built-in Wall Oven (in the Convection Bake function at 350°F), but you can also use any Convection or conventional oven.

I totally love this dessert as the tops are golden brown and the inside is a soft, custardy goodness that will delight your taste buds.

These dessert tarts are best consumed within a day or two. To be honest, when ever I make these, they don’t last the day. However if you happen to have any left over, make sure you refrigerate them in a seal-tight container for up to 3 days.

I personally like serving these coconut custard tarts a bit warm, so put them in the oven for about 7 minutes at 350°F prior to serving.

Using the regular muffin liners, this recipe will yield approximately 10 – 11 tarts.


INGREDIENTS

  • 3 large eggs (beaten)
  • 300 ml of condensed milk
  • 100 ml of milk
  • 250 ml Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the Sharp® 24” SuperSteam+™ Superheated Steam and Convection Built-in Wall Oven in the Convection Bake function to 350°F.

If you are baking in a regular convection oven, preheat to 325°F or conventional oven, preheat to 350°F. Adjust the oven rack to the middle position.

Line a 12-cup muffin tin with 10 – 12 paper cupcake liners and, if desired, coat the liners with the nonstick vegetable or coconut spray oil.

In a medium size bowl, beat the eggs with a whisk. Add the condensed milk, milk, shredded coconut, and melted butter, whisking well after each addition.

Ladle the custard into the paper cups, filling each 1/4 inch from the top. Make sure to stir the custard frequently to keep the coconut evenly distributed.

You’ll be able to fill 10 to 11 liners.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the coconut is nicely toasted. Cool completely in the muffin tin before removing.

Decorate with additional shredded coconut or a dollop of jam, if so desired.

HELPFUL HINTS

If you are using the Sharp® 24” SuperSteam+™ Superheated Steam and Convection Built-in Wall Oven, place your muffin pan on top of the baking trays.

I personally like the top of my tarts very golden, therefore I put my tarts on the top rack for 24 minutes.

If you prefer your tarts less golden, put your tarts on the bottom rack and bake for 25 minutes.


What Are the Benefits of Smart Appliances in the Kitchen?

By Daniel Troise, Marketing Intern, HA Marketing, SEMCA


Technology has become an integral feature in our household and is something we truly cannot imagine our lives without! According to a recent survey, about 65% of Americans have at least one smart device in their household showing that the majority of consumers find these modern assistants helpful when going about their daily tasks and activities. One room in your home that might be lacking upgraded appliances (which also happens to be our most-used space) is the kitchen. We’re here to break down the benefits are of having IoT appliances in your kitchen.

Hands-Free Cooking

We love being busy in the kitchen whipping up new Pinterest-worthy recipes, but after a long day at work, the last thing we want to do is spend an hour cooking dinner. That’s where smart kitchen appliances come to the rescue. Here at Sharp, we’ve launched a variety of appliances that allow you to cook hands-free (yup, you read that right)!

SuperSteam+ Build in Wall Oven

Save Time

It’s a fact that smart appliances will save you time – something we’re all needing more of! Juggling work calls, kids’ virtual school sessions, and keeping up with friends can leave us wishing we just had a few more hours in a day to get everything accomplished. An appliance that can help with that is our SuperSteam+ Build-in Wall Oven! It is like having a sous chef by your side with 5 high-performance cooking modes as well as a dedicated mobile app that can enable smart features. The app also includes access to thousands of recipes, so you don’t have to spend time thinking about how to answer the dreaded question of, “What’s for dinner?”

Perfectly Cooked Food Every Time

The final benefit (and perhaps the most important) when cooking with a smart appliance, is perfectly cooked food every time. Say goodbye to overcooked proteins or burned vegetables and hello to devices that work with you to put a 5-star meal on the table. One of our favorite products in our smart kitchen lineup is our Easy Wave Open Built-In Microwave Drawer! This appliance features Wi-Fi connectivity for seamless integration in your smart home. The Sharp Kitchen app features cooking instructions as well as “Microwave Smart Cook” to guide you through the cook and defrost menu items, so your food comes out delicious every time.

Have we convinced you to upgrade that old oven or microwave sitting in your kitchen yet? If so, we would love to hear from you on how these appliances are making your lives simple and better every day!


10 Things You Should Never Put in a Microwave

By Daniel Troise, Marketing Intern, HA Marketing, SEMCA


Working from home for just coming on about a year, my whole workflow and day has changed and I found myself never going hungry as I have now taken the responsibility on stocking the new cafeteria and lunch/break room (yes, it is my kitchen). After constantly running back and forth to my Sharp Carousel Countertop Microwave Oven to prepare quick meals in between meetings and on breaks, I sometimes think back of some common microwave mistakes and mishaps that have happened due to my own negligence or me not knowing proper microwave safety protocols.

After thinking back to the scare, or sometimes laughter, of times where I either put something in the microwave that I was not supposed to I decided that compiling a list of 10 things you should never put in the microwave for our readers would be the perfect way to increase your awareness. Through these tips, I highly recommend you keep them in the back of your head and maybe even think about the things you keep in your kitchen. Personally, I am always using the microwave and have made many efforts to only use microwave-safe products.

Chinese food container

Take-Out Containers

There is nothing I love more than a lazy night on the couch with your favorite movie on and some yummy Chinese food. In fact, it is taking everything to not jump off my keyboard, put sweatpants on, and use the remote to stream my favorite movie. At least I know have plans for tonight, right?

When idealizing my favorite night, one of my favorite foods to order is noodles and sometimes I can eat a bit more than the traditional serving size so I make sure to get more than one, and sometimes save the rest for later (perhaps while I am blogging).

One thing I always do as soon I as I prepare to save it for later is to transfer it out of the traditional take-out containers. Most of the time, the handle that is being used is made from metal and according to “Clark” can easily start a fire.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Popcorn-1024x680.jpeg

Non-Microwave Popcorn

As you probably know by now between some of my past articles and personal interests, I am a huge movie buff and love nothing more than just to grab a bowl of popcorn and kick back, relax, and enjoy a film. What is even cooler is that all Sharp Microwave Ovens and Microwave Drawers come with a convenient Popcorn Preset tuned for Optimal Popping Results.

Throughout society, we have always learned that you just place a bag of popcorn in a microwave and then poof, you are good to go. However, after reading “Money Talk News” I have come to find out that not all popcorn bags are deemed safe and suitable for a microwave. It is extremely important to check the box or individually bag of popcorn and look for the appropriate messaging that ensures you can place it in the microwave. Otherwise, it may be just a brown paper bag and could potentially catch on fire.

Silverware

Silverware

If you have not seen the running trend throughout this article, but we can conclude that placing a medal in the microwave is an absolute no due to the potential harm it can cause to your microwave, your kitchen or home, and most importantly, you! When preparing to place foods in the microwave, we tend to use silverware to mix up or transfer them to microwave-safe containers. Coming to mind after reading this informative article from “The Takeout“, is me mixing the spaghetti when I heat the leftovers up.

While it is totally normal to mix it, it is very important that you do not leave the spoon, fork, knives, or any utensil in the bowl or container when it comes time to prep. This sounds easier than it is, but you may be surprised how easy leaving it can be. Overall, just make sure that you double-check whenever preparing something in the microwave, and most importantly, enjoy your meal!

Kid holding a brown paper bag

Brown Paper Bags

This item interfering with a microwave oven hits a little too close to home for me. Every day for as long as I could remember during elementary school, my mother would pack me lunch in a brown paper bag. Therefore, I always knew where they were. Another thing you should know about this story is that I love nachos.

One time after school, I really wanted nachos, so I placed a bunch of chips in a brown paper bag and placed it in the microwave. While they were not in there for long, once my mother saw that I placed them in the microwave, she ran and took them out. At that point, I learned that brown paper bags have no place in the microwave.

After reflecting upon this story and a bit more research I have come to learn from “Life Hacker” and the “US Department of Agriculture” that placing brown paper bags could cause it to flame and emit toxic fumes due to the intense heart interacting with the materials. Bottom line, if you don’t want to burn your house on fire keep brown paper bags and microwaves separate.

Styrofoam container

Styrofoam Containers

I think many, if not most people I know have questioned whether Styrofoam containers are microwave-safe and if they are deemed okay to safely place in the microwave. Almost every time I go out to eat, and when I was a waiter, anytime I interacted with leftovers or wrapped up food that was not finished I always brought them home in Styrofoam containers. The important thing to take away is no, it is not okay to use them to reheat or prepare food in a microwave.

According to “Interesting Engineering” Styrofoam contains plastic, which is a big no-no for a microwave, but also contains toxic chemicals in the container. When melted or heated, the release of these chemicals can go into your food or beverage and infect it. I’m not sure about you, but personally, I feel a bit more comfortable just transferring everything to a microwave-safe dish.

Guy holding a stainless steel coffee mug

Travel Mugs

After coming home to quarantine, I have made the realization after two days that my father is addicted to travel coffee mugs and loves to purchase one at every destination we go to, or any time they are on the end-cap at the store. In fact, we now have two shelves above the coffee machine dedicated to these travel mugs.

This article from the Huff Post taught me that whether you think so or not, travel mugs are not deemed microwave safe due to the stainless steel. It will not be effective due to the stainless steel blocking the heat, therefore causing the microwave not to work. In fact, there is a chance it could damage your microwave.

And by the way, I made sure to text my dad to tell him before writing this.

Aluminum Foil

Aluminum Foil

Everyone has a process when it comes to wrapping up leftovers after dinner. If you are a member of my house, you will quickly learn that we just pull out the aluminum foil and quickly place it over the plate we are trying to save for later. While this is a great concept to use over microwave-safe plates, however, it is very important that you do not place it in the microwave as it could be extremely harmful.

Don’t believe me? Take it from the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), who deem it as potentially dangerous. The reflection causes the heat not to warm the food and shield it from getting warm, while in the meantime the heat could potentially spark causing a fire. Instead, always inspect the food and make sure there are no small pieces in the microwave or on the plate before you press the button on the microwave.

Happy Birthday paper plates

Seasonal and Celebratory Paper Plates

This tip came from someone on my immediate workgroup team and I had no idea this could even cause an issue until they told me. Ever buy those paper plates that are designed for the season at the supermarket or local dollar store? I am talking about the ones that say, ‘Happy Birthday’ or ‘Class of 2021’ and everything in between. While these festive plates really help ring in the celebration with you and your loved ones, adding to the aesthetic of the event, it is important that you steer away from putting these types of plates in the microwave.

To increase durability and keep them low cost, some of the plated contain aluminum or metal that is not deemed microwave safe. While you may think that you are simply just reheating your food, placing plates like these (where you are not 100% sure of the materials used) can cause severe damage to your microwave or even start an unsafe fire. Personally, I still buy the plates, but make sure to transfer all the foods in microwave-safe plates/containers before reheating them.

Pasta with red sauce

Red Sauce

If you ever meet me, in the first five minutes you will come to learn that I love all things pasta, and everything related to it. Being my favorite meal of all time, especially with a red sauce, knowing the ins and out of how to prepare it is second-hand knowledge at this point. I would love to share it with you!

Here is a huge, and messy tip! Whenever you have a sauce that you want to heat up that you made the night before or want to prepare some red sauce to compensate with some freshly boiled pasta, PUT A LID ON IT! According to the Huff Post, placing the red sauce in the microwave without a lid can get really messy, causing it to get everywhere due to the ingredients.

Instead, make sure that when the sauce is alone that you have a microwave-safe lid on it.

Person closing a microwave oven

Nothing At All

This one may come as quite strange; therefore, it is the perfect way to wrap up this list of things you can’t place in the microwave. If you can’t think about what it is, I guess you are sort of right because the answer is nothing.

According to “The Spruce”, one of the worst things to place in your microwave is actually nothing at all. When microwaves turn and are being used, the heat has no place to be absorbed. While the heat is typically absorbed by the food would have nowhere to go, potentially causing an explosion.

You may be thinking, “what kind of person may turn on their microwave with nothing inside of it”, it can be a common mistake to turn it on and forgot to put something in it, or you may think about trying it out as soon as you get it and want to see if it works.


The Anytime Chocolate Mug Cake

By Jena Branco, Marketing Coordinator, Brand & Marketing Communications, SECL

This Anytime Chocolate Mug Cake is moist and chocolatey. Made in the microwave and ready in minutes, this easy treat is perfect for all chocolate lovers …anytime you have a craving!


Sometimes you crave a piece of chocolate cake. Am I right? This easy mug cake recipe is perfect for when you want just a little cake, and don’t want to bake a whole cake!  It’s easy to whip up, is ready in less than five minutes, and has a warm and moist texture. I’ve tried a few microwave cakes before, and most turned out dry or lack in flavour, but once you’ve tried this one … you won’t be disappointed …. I promise!

What I love about this recipe is that I have all the ingredients in my pantry most of the time. It’s specifically created to be made in a mug (or in a ramekin), in the microwave, without eggs. Eggs are traditionally used in cakes to act as a binding agent to hold its texture/shape, but in the case of a mug cake you don’t have to worry that. Some people mix all the ingredients in the mug which makes for one less dish to wash, however I prefer to mix all my ingredients in a mixing bowl and pour the mixture into my mug or ramekin.

Please note that ALL microwaves are different and will yield different results — it can overcook the mug cake if you aren’t careful. I’m using the Sharp 24″ IoT Microwave Drawer (SMD2489ESC) which is 950 watts, cooking at 100% power for 70 seconds. Knowing this information, it may help you better judge how long to cook yours for and at what power.

Do I Need a Special Mug?

This is a good question .. and the answer is YES and NO.  You want a mug that’s big enough to hold the cake once it’s cooked (and to prevent from spilling over the top), so you want to have at least a 12 ounce mug. If you want to split the recipe in half (sometimes I’m feeling a bit generous and I share with the hubby), it’s ok to use a ramekin or a small coffee mug. One more tidbit, try not to use a mug that is tall and skinny as you will end up with an unevenly cooked finished product. The most important factor in all of this, is to ensure your mug is microwave safe.

So anytime you have a craving for chocolate cake … go start mixing, and you’ll satisfy our craving in less than 5 minutes!


INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp. milk (or a non-dairy milk of your choice)
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (optional, but encouraged)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (however, I like to use coconut oil)
  • 1 tablespoon hazelnut chocolate spread (Nutella) or mini chocolate chips

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a medium bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together
  • Whisk in the milk and oil until all ingredients are combined, and all clumps are gone.
  • Pour batter into a microwave-safe mug or ramekin
  • Add hazelnut chocolate spread in the middle of the batter or mini chocolate chips. Push slightly into the batter
  • Place mug (or ramekin) into the microwave (hint: place a paper towel under the mug, this is to catch any batter if your mug cake overflows).
  • Microwave mug cake for 70 seconds on high.
  • If you’re splitting the recipe in half and putting batter in two separate ramekins, it’s important to know that you can only put one ramekin into the microwave at a time. Cook for 60 seconds on high.
  • Carefully remove from the microwave and serve immediately.
  • Top with whipped cream, a small scoop of ice cream, or sprinkle some icing sugar over top, if desired. Enjoy!


How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven (R1874TY)

By Gina Greco, Senior Brand Marketing Specialist, SEMCA


This is your complete guide to installing a Sharp Over-the-Range Microwave Oven. Whether you have just purchased a microwave, are redesigning your kitchen, or are still in the process of deciding what microwave is right for you, this guide will provide you with helpful step-by-step installation instructions. For more details regarding our Sharp Over-the-Range Microwave Oven (R1874TY), make sure to visit our website for more detailed information.

In this guide, you’ll learn how to

  1. Prep the designated area
  2. Connect the electric
  3. Install a hood exhaust duct
  4. Connect the ventilation system
  5. Properly mount the appliance.
  6. Install your microwave

Please read all the instructions before starting the installation process.

For more information or to view detailed diagrams that correspond with the installation process, please consult Over-the-Range Microwave Owen Installation Instructions by Sharp.

Where Do You Want to Install Your Over-the-Range Microwave?

You likely have a specific spot in mind for your microwave – such as over your range. Before starting the installation process, you should confirm that your wall construction and counter/cabinet/kitchen space fits the requirements.

Figure 1 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

Here is a list of the exact requirements needed for a Sharp Over-the-Range Microwave.

  • The microwave must be mounted on a flat wall that is:
    • 66 inches or more above the floor
    • 30 inches or more above the range/cooking surface
    • 2 inches or more above the backsplash
  • The space for the microwave must be:
    • 12 inches in depth
    • 30 inches in width
    • 5 inches in height
  • The microwave must be mounted on a wall that is a minimum of 2-inch x 4-inch wood studding and 3/8-inch or more — thick drywall or plaster/lath.
  • The wall must be capable of supporting 110 lbs.

If your space fulfills all the above requirements, you can officially start the installation process.

Preparing to Install Your Over-the-Range Microwave

Now that you’ve determined your space can fit and support an over-the-range microwave, you need to prep the area. Prepping the area is very important. It is the foundation for your appliance and includes preparing the wall, connecting the electric, and installing the hood exhaust duct.

The following instructions are very detailed but easy to accomplish. We recommend that if you do not feel confident in your ability to connect the electricity or feel that the electric in its current state does not meet local or national standards, please contact a certified professional.

Prepping the Space to Mount Your Microwave

The first thing you will need to do is identify where the studs are in your wall. You can do this with a stud finder tool or by using a hammer to tap across the surface of the wall lightly. Continue tapping until you hear a solid sound — that means you have found the stud. For tips on finding a stud, watch this video.

The unit should be attached to a minimum of a 2-inch x 4-inch wall stud. Find the center of the stud. This can be done by probing the wall with a small nail to identify the stud’s edges. Place a pencil mark halfway between the edges to identify the center.

Figure 2 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

Tip: the center of adjacent studs will normally be 16 inches – 24 inches to either side of this mark.

 Grounding Your Microwave

Before tackling any of the electrical tasks, please make sure your appliance is grounded. In an electrical short circuit, grounding reduces the risk of electric shock by providing an escape wire for the electric current. You must confirm this before moving forward. Your appliance should be plugged into a wall socket that is properly installed and grounded in accordance with national and local code requirements.

Warning: improper use of the grounding plug can result in a risk of electric shock.

Your microwave is equipped with a 3-prong grounding plug. Do not, under any circumstances, cut or remove the grounding pin from the plug.

Connect your power supply cord to the separate 120 Volt AC, 60 Hz, 20 Amp, or more branch circuit, single grounded receptacle. This should be located inside the cabinet directly above the mounting location.

Installing the Hood Exhaust Duct

Is your hood vented to the outside? If so, a hood exhaust duct is required.

Tip: all ductwork must be metal; you cannot use plastic.

To start this process, you will need to confirm that all connections are secure. Please read the following:

  • Exhaust Connection: The hood exhaust is designed to connect to a standard 31/4-inch x 10-inch rectangular duct. If a round duct is required, a rectangular-to-round adapter must be used.
  • Rear Exhaust: If you are using rear or horizontal exhaust, you will need to align the exhaust with the studs’ space.
  • Maximum Duct Length: To achieve satisfactory air movement, you should not exceed a total duct length of 140 feet whether you are using a 3 1/4-inch x 10 inch rectangular or 6-inch diameter round duct.

Figure 3 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

If possible, a straight duct is best. Elbow, adapters, wall, and roof caps create additional airflow resistance. If you are unable to have a straight duct, you will need to calculate the total length, add the equivalent lengths of all transitions and adaptors, plus the length of all straight duct sections. Doing this will allow you to calculate airflow resistance. This should total less than 140 feet.

How to Install Your Over-the-Range Microwave

Now that you have prepped the space for your new appliance, it is time to start the installation process. The installation process includes unboxing your microwave, connecting the ventilation, mounting the scale plate, and finally, mounting your microwave. In order to complete this installation, you will need the following tools:

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Measuring tape
  • Drill
  • ½-inch, 5/8-inch, and 3/32-inch drill bits
  • 1-1/2-inch wood bit or metal hole cutter (if a metal cabinet is used)
  • Saw to cut exhaust opening (if needed)
  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Tape
  • Protective drop cloth for product and range
  • Protective eyewear

You will also use the items listed below, which are included in the appliance you purchased.

Figure 4 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

Preparing Your Microwave

Unbox your microwave. Fully inspect the unit to confirm there are not any dents, scratches, or cracks. Open the microwave to confirm that there is not a misaligned or bent door, damaged door seal, or broken/loose door hinge. It should be in pristine condition. If it is not, contact the retailer you purchased the microwave from or contact a Sharp authorized service center. You do not want to install a previously damaged microwave. This could cause various problems, from an inability to function to inflicting damage on the surrounding surfaces.

If the unit you purchased has a mounting plate: rest the oven on its side. Remove the two screws that secure the mounting plate to the rear side of the microwave. Remove the mounting plate. The two screws can be discarded.

Figure 5 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

Connecting the Ventilation System to Your Microwave

Your microwave can attach to three different types of hood ventilation systems:

  • Recirculating: non-vented, ductless operations
  • Horizontal exhaust: outside ventilation
  • Vertical exhaust: outside ventilation

Follow the directions below based on the type of ventilation system you will be using.

Recirculating 

If you have a recirculating system, that means that it is non-vented and ductless. These units are typically preassembled for recirculating and require no further installation. See owner’s manual for care, filter maintenance, and additional information.

Horizontal Exhaust 

If you have a horizontal exhaust, this means you are working with outside ventilation. Follow these instructions:

1. Remove the screws from the fan cover bracket. You need to save these screws.

Figure 6 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

2. Remove the fan cover bracket.

3. Carefully lift the hood fan unit and slip the wire out of the cavity. Do not stretch, pull, or overextend these wires, as it could cause damage.

Figure 7 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

4. Rotate the hood fan unit 180° so that the fan blade openings face the back of the microwave. You will need to lift the wire over the hood fan unit into the microwave.

Figure 8 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

5. Replace the hood fan unit with the microwave. Be careful not to pinch the wire.

6. Place the wire back into the cavity.

7. Replace the fan cover bracket. You will need to confirm that the fan blades are visible through the rear opening in the microwave. This must be done before moving forward.

8. Attach the fan cover bracket to the microwave with the screws you removed in step 1. The hood should not be rotated for horizontal exhaust operation.

Figure 9 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

9. Attach the exhaust damper assembly to the mounting plate’s back by sliding it into the slits.

10. Use screws to tighten into place.

Figure 10 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

Vertical Exhaust 

If you have a vertical exhaust, this means you are working with outside ventilation. Follow these instructions:

1. Remove the screws from the fan cover bracket. You need to save these screws.

2. Remove the fan cover bracket.

3.Carefully lift the hood fan unit and slip the wire out of the cavity. Do not stretch, pull, or overextend these wires, as it could cause damage.

4. Rotate the hood fan unit 90° so that the fan blade openings are facing the top of the oven.

5. Place the hood fan unit into the oven. Be careful not to pinch the lead wire between the inner bracket and the hood fan unit. Put the lead wire into the wire box.

6. Attach the fan cover bracket to the unit with the screws you removed in step 1. The hood should not be rotated for vertical exhaust operation.

7. Attach the exhaust damper assembly to the fan cover by sliding it into the slits.

Figure 11 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

8. Use screws to tighten into place.

Microwave Installation – Mounting Scale Plate

Before installing your microwave mounting scale plate, please confirm that your space meets all the requirements listed in the “Where Do You Want to Install Your Over-the-Range Microwave?” section above.

First, use wood screws to attach the mounting plate to the stud(s). Next, use toggle bolts to attach the mounting plate through the holes and attach the toggle nuts.

Figure 12 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

It would be best if you positioned the mounting plate with the toggle bolts attached to the wall. Insert toggle nuts and bolts through the holes in the wall with the toggle nuts closed. Use the wood screws to attach the mounting plate to the stud(s).

Figure 13 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

Tip: Before insertion, be sure you leave a space more than the wall’s thickness between the Mounting Plate and the end of each of the toggle nuts (in the closed position). If you do not leave enough space, the toggle nut will not open on the other side of the wall. Once a toggle nut opens, it cannot be withdrawn from the hole; therefore, make sure all of the toggles are in the correct position before insertion.

Align the mounting plate carefully and hold it in position while tightening toggle bolts. Pull toggle bolt toward you and turn clockwise to tighten.

Figure 14 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

Microwave Installation – Mounting Oven to the Wall

For this final step, two people are recommended to attach the microwave to the mounting plate.

1. Carefully place the microwave on top of the range.

Tip: It is recommended that you place a piece of cardboard or a towel/drop cloth between the two units to prevent scratching or damage.

2. Slide the unit toward the back of the range until it stops. Align the lower back edge of the microwave with the mounting plate, then thread the power supply cord through the hole made in the bottom of the top cabinet.

3. Hang the oven on the lower edge of the mounting plate, then rotate the unit upward. Take care that the power cord can clear the edge of the hole as the oven is rotated upward.

Tip: In the case of a non-recessed bottom in the top cabinet, the hole for the cord may need to be enlarged.

4. Tighten the two-unit mounting screws located in the grease filter openings. Next, you will need to install the grease filters by fitting them into the opening. Push back and up into place.

Figure 15 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave OvenFigure 16 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

5. Use the screws and washers provided to attach the unit to the top cabinet.

6. Make a bundle of the power supply cord and place it inside the cabinet.

Figure 17 - How to Install an Over-the-Range Microwave Oven

7. Remove all packing material from the microwave.

8. Plug in the power cord.

 Start Using Your New Over-the-Range Microwave

Congratulations — you’ve successfully completed the over-the-range microwave installation process! We recommend that all new users read the operations manual before using it. We hope you love your new microwave!


Gluten Free and Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

By Jena Branco, Marketing Coordinator, Brand & Marketing Communications, SECL

This Gluten-free and Vegan Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese is healthy and delicious. It’s so easy to make and oh so creamy … but sssshhhhh, don’t tell your family there’s no dairy in it!

What I love about this Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese recipe is that it combines two of my favourite comfort foods: pasta and cream sauce!  Butternut squash isn’t only the colour of cheddar cheese, but makes a super creamy sauce when it’s cooked and blended.  Although I’m not lactose intolerance, I’m finding these days my body doesn’t seem to react too fairly when I consume dairy products, so my search for an amazing creamy sauce (without the cheese) was on!

After trying a few recipes I found on the internet, I decided to create my own (inspired by a combination of 2-3 recipes). As I’ve written many times, my son is the pickiest of eaters — if he knew butternut squash is a “vegetable”, I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t touch this dish again. Luckily for me, he couldn’t tell the difference! My butternut squash creamy sauce isn’t too strong in flavour or spice and by making this vegan version of mac and cheese , it is a great way to sneak in some healthy veggies and make this traditional dish more nutritious.  

What You’ll Need in this Recipe:

  • Pasta – You can use any type of pasta you like; whole wheat, gluten free or regular. However, I used Brown Rice pasta in the shape of shells as a gluten-free option.
  • Butternut Squash – Try to buy a medium sized butternut squash for this recipe. If you buy a really large squash, you can freeze the rest in a tightly sealed freezer bag up to 3 months. They also sell pre-cubed butternut squash in the produce aisle, if you don’t want to peel and cut your own.  Or, you can buy the cubed frozen butternut squash in the freezer aisle.
  • Plant Based Milk – I usually have almond or cashew milk around but you can use any kind of plant based milk you like, just make sure it’s plain and unsweetened.
  • Nutritional Yeast – There are quite a few spices in this recipe but the most important is nutritional yeast. It’s what gives the butternut squash mac and cheese its’ cheesy flavour without adding any dairy.  It’s usually sold in the natural food section of your grocery store, or in the spice aisle at Whole Foods, but in my case, I had to order it from Amazon as the two grocery stores I went to were completely sold out.
  • Almond Flour (optional) – I use almond flour (toasted in the oven for 5 – 10 minutes) — instead of breadcrumbs — for a true gluten-free recipe.

How to Make Gluten-Free Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese

This recipe is really easy to make and there are only a few steps:

  • You start by washing the outside of the Butternut Squash before cutting in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds, brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Roasted squash always has tons of flavour, so this is how I like to cook mine. I used the Superheated Steam Oven at 400°F in the Supersteam Roast function for 20 to 25 minutes, however if using a conventional oven, roast at 400°F for 25 to 30 minutes.
  •  Add the roasted butternut squash by scooping out the insides into a high powered food processor or blender along with almond milk, spices and the nutritional yeast. Blend until it’s silky smooth.
  • Cook your favourite pasta according to package directions (usually, adding pasta to a pot with lightly salted water, bring water to a boil and simmer until tender), drain and then pour the butternut squash cream sauce and mix together. And … serve and eat! 
  • If so desired, you could put it in a baking dish and bake it in the oven at 350°F for about 15 minutes to get a nice crust on top.
  • Optional: Set a rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F. Spread almond flour on parchment or silicone lined baking sheet and toast for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until toasted and fragrant. Then sprinkle a tablespoon or two on top of your mac and cheese prior to serving!
Roasted butternut squash

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups of Brown Rice pasta
  • 1 medium sized butternut squash
  • 1 cup plain, unsweetened almond milk (you can add an extra 1/2 cup if it’s too thick)
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup almond flour

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat Superheated Steam Oven at 400°F in the Supersteam Roast function.
  2. Wash butternut squash, cut it in half length wise, and cook for 20-25 minutes in the bottom tray of oven.
  3. Scoop out butternut squash and add to a blender along with the almond milk, nutritional yeast and all the spices. Blend until creamy, about 1 minute.
  4. Cook pasta according to package directions, drain and add back to the pot. Pour butternut squash sauce over the top and mix until combined. You can turn the stove heat on, if you need to warm it up. Serve and eat!
  5. If so desired, you could put it in a baking dish and bake it in the oven at 350°F for about 15 minutes to get a nice crust on top.
  6. Optional: Preheat Superheated Steam Oven at 350°F in the Convection Bake function. Spread almond flour on parchment or silicone lined baking sheet and toast for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until toasted and fragrant. Then sprinkle a tablespoon or two on top of your mac and cheese prior to serving! Topping off with some chopped basil and red pepper flakes makes this dish look too good to eat!

Are Steam Ovens Worth Buying?

By Gina Greco, Senior Brand Marketing Specialist, SEMCA


Since the start of the new year, many resolutions have been made to develop a better lifestyle. As if making it to a workout class or finding a treadmill in your new gym wasn’t hard enough, now cooking a meal full of nutrients is thrown into the mix.

At Sharp, we try to cook with the most beneficial appliances and ingredients to keep our lifestyles moving in the right direction. An abundance of research gathered about the benefits of cooking with a superheated steam oven has helped guide us through our cooking journey.

Your first steam oven purchase can be quite an investment; there’s no denying that. Through this article, we hope to give you a better understanding of what a superheated steam oven is and if it is the right choice for your lifestyle.

What is Superheated Steam?

You may be asking yourself what superheated steam is, what exactly are the steam oven benefits, and why it has become more of a trend over the past few years. Superheated steam is steam put in contact with additional heat, making the steam temperature rise with pressure.

In a recent study published in the Korean Journal for Food Science of Animal Resources, superheated steam food samples scored the highest “among the sensory characteristics, tenderness score, juiciness score, and overall acceptability score.” After extensive research, our team has also gathered that “steamed vegetables maintained a better texture quality than boiled vegetables” and that “steamed sweet potatoes had an increase in antioxidant activity.”

How a Superheated Steam Oven Works

Believe it or not, a superheated steam oven works much as a convection oven does. A notable benefit over the traditional oven found in most of our homes, a superheated steam oven has proven to be cleaner. The Sharp SuperSteam+ Built-in Oven (SSC2489DS) is a hybrid convection oven that uses heat and water to cook. It has 5 high-performance cooking modes, including Steam, Steam Bake, Convection Bake, Super Steam Grill, and Super Steam Roast. The combination of superheated steam and conventional, radiant heat in cooking modes means that your food will be crispy and browned on the outside, moist and delicious on the inside.

In the aforementioned Korean Journal of Food Science, researchers found that “moisture content and lightness value were higher in superheated steam cooked chicken steak than that of boiling, grilling, and microwave cooking.” And a three-in-one combination wall oven like the Sharp SuperSteam+  Built-in Wall Oven offers versatility. You have the option to cook with superheated steam at browning temperatures, radiant heat, and convection or with gentle and regular steam.

The Sharp SuperSteam+™ Built-in Oven uses a Hybrid Convection System that circulates the hot air, steam, and super steam through a damper duct system. Heat is delivered through the upper and back of the oven, as well as the top of the oven. Unlike conventional radiant ovens, convection ovens have a fan that continuously circulates air through the oven cavity. When hot air is blown onto food, the food tends to cook more quickly as opposed to merely surrounding it.

How to Cook in a Superheated Steam Oven

Cooking with superheated steam has never been easier than it is today. The Sharp SuperSteam+ Built-In Wall Oven has a Smart Cook feature that offers built-in recipes and pre-set cook options, which take the guesswork out of cooking. There are healthy menu categories and easy controls accessible through the touchscreen. You can also connect to your home network to enable remote control operation of common features, like preheating, and receive push notifications to your mobile phone. Use the app to access 43 additional recipes found with step-by-step instructions on how to prepare and cook in your SuperSteam+™ Built-In Wall Oven!

The SuperSteam+ app also keeps you connected with our Spotlight section – your source for Helpful Hints, Inspired Innovations, and new manual cook recipes from our vibrant, online community at Simply Better Living. With additional recipes and tips available online, everyone can get started cooking with superheated steam right away. Sharp’s steam oven’s benefits go beyond versatile cooking options. The oven’s interface gives you expert guidance to make mindful and delicious meals you will love. Our Smart Cook feature offers built-in recipes and pre-set cook options that take the guesswork out of cooking while the Manual settings put you in control of the oven.

What Can You Do with Your Sharp SuperSteam+ App?

  • Preheat your oven remotely!
  • Access more menus via the app.
  • App provides cook times and temperatures for some of your favorite foods.
  • Enjoy Smart Recipes with full-colour, step-by-step instructions.
  • Save your favorite and most frequently used foods for quick and easy access.
  • Keep up to date with all things that Sharp under the Spotlight section and access great recipes, ideas, and tips!
  • Push notifications to your mobile device to let you know when your oven has finished preheating and when your food is ready.

Pinterest has also become a valuable resource for many aspiring cooks. It offers various superheated steam oven recipes that will make cooking in your new oven a breeze. To find more superheated steam oven recipes, check out the “Recipes” tab on our blog. Please share your favorite recipes with us in the comments down below.


Kitchen Design Trend: Floating Shelves

By Gina Greco, Senior Brand Marketing Specialist, SEMCA


Suppose you’re new to Simply Better Living, welcome home! It’s no secret that I LOVE to discover modern and noteworthy kitchen trends. In all honesty, my weekends are spent walking through a local retail store in the kitchen section, scrolling through design boards on Pinterest, or watching HGTV. So it doesn’t come as a surprise to my friends and family when I discover unique kitchen trends that I want to incorporate into my home.

Floating Shelves for Your Kitchen

One of my favorite trends that I have seen everywhere? Floating kitchen shelves! These shelves offer just as much storage space as traditional cabinets with the added convenience of being completely open and accessible. Besides being a convenient choice for many kitchens, I love the way these open shelves look.

Below I’ve highlighted some of my favorite inspiration shots of floating shelves, although I have to warn you that seeing these may cause you to replace your cabinets with these shelves instead!

Tea & Coffee Bar

Floating Shelves for Small Spaces

One of my favorite uses for open shelves is to section off a separate space in the kitchen for a tea and coffee bar. I love to start our morning with a cup of hazelnut coffee. Having a different section of my kitchen for all my tea and coffee must-haves is convenient and adds a café feeling to my kitchen.  The whole space gives off a cozy feel that makes me want to curl up with a big cup of coffee and a good book!

Small Spaces

Floating Shelves for Small Spaces

One of the most common complaints about kitchen spaces is that they feel too small or cramped. A simple way to open up a kitchen is to incorporate open floating shelves. Traditional cabinets can often make your space feel closed off… but the openness of these shelves allows for even the smallest kitchen spaces to feel light and airy. Pro tip: If your kitchen is small, counter space, as well as shelving space, is crucial. Consider incorporating a Sharp Microwave Drawer or a Sharp Over-the-Range Microwave Oven to free up your precious counter space and provide an overall sleek and modern look.

Live Edge

Live Edge Floating Shelves

A live edge floating shelf is one of my favorites takes on this trend. The raw edges on these shelves incorporate the wood’s original look into any kitchen space, allowing for an overall natural and organic feel. I especially loved how the above photo includes knots from the original wood into the shelves.

I have a pretty good feeling that this floating kitchen shelf trend isn’t going away anytime soon, and we’ll be on the hunt for more fun ways floating shelves are being incorporated into kitchens. Do you have a favorite inspiration photo of floating shelves? Let us know on Twitter!


Mindful Work-from-Home Snack Ideas

By Gina Greco, Senior Brand Marketing Specialist, SEMCA

**NOTE:   The Sharp Superheated Steam Countertop Oven (SSC0586DS) is not sold in Canada.  


We’ve all been there: it’s 3:00 pm during a busy workday, and hunger hits! It can be easy to gravitate towards a bag of chips or sugary granola bar because it’s pre-packaged and ready to go, but oftentimes those snacks will leave you feeling unsatisfied and hungrier. We are sharing some of our favorite go-to snacks to have during the week that is simple to prep the night before or require only a few minutes to put together. Whether you’re craving something salty or sweet- we’ve got you covered!

Homemade Hummus

hummas

Hummus is one of our favorite snacks because it is so versatile and can be paired with various foods like fresh veggies, crackers, or toast! This recipe from Inspired Taste is versatile and tastes so delicious; you’ll never repurchase store-bought hummus again.

Ingredients:

chick peas

  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (1 large lemon)
  • 1/4 cup well-stirred tahini
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons water

Instructions:

  1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the tahini and lemon juice and process for 1 minute, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, then process for 30 seconds more. This extra time helps “whip” or “cream” the tahini, making the hummus smooth and creamy.
  2. Add the olive oil, minced garlic, cumin, and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the whipped tahini and lemon juice. Process for 30 seconds, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, then process another 30 seconds or until well blended. Open, drain, and rinse the chickpeas. Add half of the chickpeas to the food processor and process for 1 minute. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl, then add remaining chickpeas and process until thick and quite smooth; 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Most likely, the hummus will be too thick or still have tiny bits of chickpea. To fix this, with the food processor turned on, slowly add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water until you reach the perfect consistency.
  4. Taste for salt and adjust as needed. Serve hummus with a drizzle of olive oil and a dash of paprika. Store homemade hummus in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to one week.

Frozen Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bites

banana bites

Curb your sweet tooth with these mouthwatering chocolate peanut butter banana bites from Not Enough Cinnamon! These are a delicious, mindful choice, including healthy fat from peanut butter, potassium from the banana, and antioxidants from the dark chocolate. We love to add a bit of flaky sea salt on top to finish them off! YUM!

Ingredients:

  • 3 bananas ripe but still firm
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter or your favorite nut butter
  • 10 oz dark chocolate
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil *optional but recommended!

banana bites

Instructions:

  1. Cut the banana into slices (about 1/4 inch – 0.7 cm each). Set aside half of the slices and arrange the other half on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  2. Heat peanut butter in the microwave on low/medium for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, stirring in between, until it’s smooth and easily spreadable.
  3. Spoon about one heaped 1/4 teaspoon (up to 1/2 teaspoon if the banana is large) on the banana slices you arranged on the baking sheet. Top with the other half of the banana slices you set aside earlier. Freeze for two hours.
  4. When the banana sandwiches are frozen, prepare the chocolate. Place chopped chocolate (or chocolate chips if using) in a microwave-safe bowl along with the coconut oil (it helps the chocolate melt and stay smooth).
  5. Microwave on low/medium heat in 30 seconds bursts, stirring between each until chocolate is fully melted and glossy (watch carefully, so the chocolate doesn’t burn).
  6. Prepare another baking sheet (or a plate) with parchment paper. Take two to three bites out of the freezer. One by one, dip them in the melted chocolate and, using two forks, “roll” them in chocolate to cover all sides.
  7. Remove excess chocolate and place it on a prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining frozen sandwiches.
  8. Place the chocolate covered bites back in the freezer until set. Once they are set, you can transfer them to a container. Store in the freezer.

Homemade Potato Chips

potato chip

Ditch the bag of oily chips and make your own using this recipe from Bowl of Delicious! It’s SO simple and only requires 3 ingredients! Bake using our SuperSteam+ Wall Oven or Superheated Steam Countertop Oven for best results.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of thinly sliced potatoes of any kind will work (about 2 medium-sized potatoes)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Other spices, such as black pepper, paprika, garlic powder, chili powder, etc. *optional

Instructions:

potato chip

  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the potato slices (2 cups) and olive oil (1 tablespoon). Mix well, so every surface of every slice of potato is covered evenly- you may want to use your hands for this since the sliced potatoes may stick together.
  3. Place the sliced potatoes on the prepared baking sheet, making sure they don’t overlap (but they can touch a little on the edges). Sprinkle them evenly with the kosher salt (1 teaspoon)and any other spices you want to use. Bake in the top half of the oven for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. Turn OFF the oven and allow to sit in the oven. At the same time, it cools off 15-30 minutes (this is optional if you’re in a hurry, but highly recommended, as it will make the potatoes crispier. Keep an eye on them through- the residual heat can quickly burn them if you aren’t careful!).
  4. Serve potato chips plain or with your favorite dipping sauce.

Crunchy Granola Clusters

granola clusters

Trail mix is so 2020. Upgrade your snacking with this granola recipe from blogger, From Scratch Fast! We love topping our yogurt off with this or grabbing a handful when we need something crunchy and nutrient-dense.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups old fashioned rolled oats, divided
  • 1 cup pecans
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped dried fruit, such as apricots, dates, cranberries, currants, cherries, etc.
  • ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup or honey (or a mix of both)
  • ¼ cup virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Instructions:

granola clusters

  1. Preheat the oven to 300˚F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Put ½ cup of the rolled oats in the food processor and process to coarse flour. Add the remaining oats, along with the pecans, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, dried fruit, coconut, cinnamon, and salt. Pulse until the nuts are coarsely chopped, about 5-6 pulses.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the maple syrup or honey, melted coconut oil, and vanilla. Pour the syrup mixture over the ingredients in the food processor, and pulse until the mixture comes together and looks damp, about 8 pulses.
  4. Transfer the granola to the baking sheet. Using a rubber spatula, press it into a ½-inch thick rectangle, about 8×12-inches large. Bake 20 minutes. Rotate the pan 190 degrees and bake until lightly browned along the edges, golden on top, and firm to the touch, about 20-25 minutes longer.
  5. Cool the granola on the pan. Break it into clusters before serving.

Homemade Chicken Potstickers

By Jena Branco, Marketing Coordinator, Brand & Marketing Communications, SECL

These homemade Potstickers (also known as Chinese Dumplings) are easy to make and incredibly delicious. Cooked in the SuperSteam+™ Superheated Steam and Convection Built-in Wall Oven — there’s no oil splatter to clean up afterwards!


Potstickers are “steam-fried” Chinese dumplings made with round wrappers and stuffed with juicy fillings, traditionally pork and cabbage, but I modified my recipe based on my family’s preference. This recipe is not only easy, but the flavours are exactly what my family enjoys! Since I’m always watching my caloric intake, I use extra lean ground chicken breast instead of the traditional pork. However, feel free to use any protein you wish such as shrimp and ground turkey.

Potstickers are different from other Asian dumplings by their cooking method.  They are lightly browned in oil first (to get a crispy bottom), and once they have a bit of colour, water is then added to the pan. Covered while cooking (with a lid) so the dumplings can finish cooking in the steam. This steam-fry method produces a juicy dish … and that’s what potstickers are in a nutshell! 

Cooking in the SuperSteam+™ Superheated Steam Oven is similar to the “steam-fried” method using the Supersteam Roast function. What I love about this, is unlike the stovetop option, you won’t have any oil splattering when you add water to a hot pan with oil in it. The Superheated Steam Oven will produce a crispy potsticker with a juicy centre … and no oil splatter.

Enjoy these potstickers as an appetizer or serve as a meal along with your favourite salad.

This potsticker recipe is made with:

  • ground chicken: I buy extra lean ground chicken breasts from the butcher, but you can buy regular ground chicken too.
  • shiitake mushrooms:  do NOT rinse mushrooms or else they will suck up water and make your potsticker filling wet, and in turn, make your potstickers soggy.  Instead, brush off any dirt with a damp paper towel if needed.  I used my mini-food processor to finely chop the shiitake mushrooms.
  • green onions: make sure they are thinly sliced
  • ground ginger:  I prefer the flavour of ground ginger, but feel free to use fresh ginger in this recipe. You will need 1” peeled ginger, peeled and minced.
  • garlic cloves: used two cloves, minced
  • soy sauce: I use light soy sauce (or sodium reduced) so your filling won’t be too salty.
  • sesame oil:  toasted sesame oil is best but you can use regular if that’s what you have on hand
  • salt & pepper:  just a dash of each
  • water:  about 2 tablespoons for sealing wontons
  • vegetable oil:  to coat the potstickers before cooking
  • Wonton wrappers:  I purchased the square ones since that’s what my local grocery store carried. There are many recipes for homemade wonton wrappers (my fave is from China Sichuan Foods) but honestly these days, I don’t have the patience or time.

How to Fold Wrappers for Potstickers

Potstickers look fancy, but they are actually very easy to put together. With the round wonton wrappers, you add the filling, fold them in half and pinch the edges together.  Use a fork to crimp the edges together for a fancier presentation. Traditionally, you would fold the wrapper in half and pleat one side of the wrapper to seal in the filling. This is the most common way you would see at the restaurants or takeout menu.

If you cannot find the round wonton wrappers, don’t worry! The square ones are just as good. Put your filling in the centre of the wrapper, dip your finger in water and run it around the edge of the wrapper, then bring all the corners together on the top. Lightly pinch the edges together to seal in the filling.

How to Make Potstickers in the Traditional Way

These dumplings are easier to make than you might think. Here’s how:

  1. Make the potsticker filling: Just put all the filling ingredients in a large bowl and mix until combined using cleaned hands or with a spoon.
  2. Form the dumplings: Fill each wrapper with about a tablespoon of filling. Wet your finger in water, then run it along the edges of the wrapper. This will help keep it closed.
    1. If your wrapper is round: Fold the wrapper over the filling to create a half moon shape, pinching the edges closed to seal.
    2. If your wrapper is square: Scroll up to see step-by-step photos for folding square wrappers into dumplings.
  3. Pan fry the dumplings: Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet. Lightly fry the dumplings until the bottoms are golden. 
  4. Steam the dumplings: Add 1/3 cup of water, cover with a tight fitting lid and steam the dumplings until the water has cooked away. Uncover and cook for another 2 minutes over medium-low heat.
  5. Serve: Remove from heat and serve your dumplings with soy sauce and thinly sliced green onions!

How to Make Potstickers in the Sharp Superheated Steam Oven

Follow steps 1 and 2 from above, and then:

  1. Preheat to 400°F:  In the Supersteam Roast Function, preheat to 400°F.
  2. Coat each dumpling with vegetable oil:  Using a vegetable oil spray, spray vegetable oil on all sides, including the bottom of the wonton. If you do not have a spray, brush oil all over the wonton.
  3. Cook:  Bake in batches. You can fit 15 potstickers on the pan. When oven is preheated, put the pan on TOP shelf, and steam roast for 8 mins.
  4. Serve: Remove from oven and serve your dumplings with soy sauce and thinly sliced green onions!

Ingredients

Pot Stickers

  • 40 wonton wrappers
  • 1 lb lean ground chicken breast
  • 1 cup shiitake mushrooms (finely chopped)
  • 3 stalks green onions (thinly sliced)
  • 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons water for sealing wontons
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil for coating wontons

Sauce

  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • thinly sliced green onions

Instructions

  • Put all the filling ingredients in a large bowl and mix until combined using cleaned hands or with a spoon.
  • Lay wontons out on a clean surface.
  • Fill each wrapper with about a tablespoon of filling.
  • Wet your finger in water, then run it along the edges of the wrapper.
  • Bring all the corners together to the top. Lightly pinch the edges together to seal in the filling.
  • Repeat with remaining wrappers and filling.
  • Working in batches, arrange dumplings on sheet rack 1-inch apart.
  • Preheat oven to in the Supersteam Roast Function, preheat to 400°F.
  • Using a vegetable oil spray, spray vegetable oil on all sides, including the bottom of the wonton. If you do not have a spray, brush oil all over each wonton.
  • Bake in batches. You can fit 15 potstickers on the sheet rack.
  • When oven is preheated, put the sheet rack on TOP shelf, and steam roast for 8 mins.
  • Transfer dumplings to a platter and serve with dipping sauce (or pour sauce over dumplings).
  • Enjoy!!