We featured the Eco-cook a couple weeks ago and I was surprised how angry some people got claiming that this was not in fact eco-friendly. The arguments came in by comment and by email. The chief complain was that this is just more stuff to buy and to send to the landfill and that it is not made from environmentally friendly material. Several people explained that there are bamboo steamers that do exactly the same thing. I looked around and all I could find was this, which is cool, but does not appear to function like the Eco-cook to allow you to boil or steam vegetables in the same pot as something else you are cooking. The by consolidating two dishes into one pot you save energy and money. If anyone out there knows of a bamboo steamer that will do this let us know because that would be perfect. Anyway, without an abundance of bamboo lying around the house I set out to replicate the eco-cook without the need for extra stuff.
What I ended up doing was using the metal strainer I already had and threw it on the top of a stew pot that I was cooking soup in. As the soup cooked it steamed the broccoli. Not the best combo because the soup cooked faster than the broccoli steamed, but I probably would have thought of that before if I was a more talented chef. Back to the drawing board, or cookbook or whatever. With a little more consideration given to food prep this could be a great solution to consolidate tasks and save energy without the need of any special tools.