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on 6 January 2009
What a great investment this steamer has been. I'm not this organised, but if I was... food could be prepared the night before and left in the steamer containers in the the fridge. When I got home from work, all I'd have to do is put the containers on the steamer, set it and walk away. As it is, I can get on with other things whilst dinner is cooked for me and I get called back to the kitchen when it's ready to eat... and if I'm not ready yet, it'll keep warm till I am! It's like having a personal chef. If only it served and cleared afterwards (or I could get my husband to do it all unassisted).

The recipes that come with the steamer are fantastic - wish there were more of them because the other steamer recipe book I have requires more 'tranlsating' from traditional steamer methods than I can be bothered with.

Food comes out cooked to perfection, and everything tastes like it's supposed to. My husband says the rice is the best he's ever had.

Definitely recommend this product if you're thinking about a healthier (or just easier) lifestyle!!
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on 18 May 2010
This unit is 25cm high and about 31cm wide and deep, except for the side handles which add about 4cm. It is an attractive silver and dark grey finish in plastic with a blue display. It has 3 steamer containers, the rear one being full-width and the front 2 being half-width. Each container has its own heater, independently controlled, so 3 totally different and contrasting items may be steamed at the same time without flavours mingling. The unit is supplied with various accessories: dishes for loose items such as rice and grains; a tray to permit long items such as asparagus or fish to be cooked; a manual with guide-times for steaming.
This is all good but there is better yet - the controller allows times to be set differently for each container and these are synchronised so that all containers finish cooking at the same time. At the end of the cooking time the unit beeps then switches to a keep-warm mode.
The control panel is designed for ease of use and has separate buttons for each container; the front 2 containers also have a separate button that allows the time to be set identically (avoiding the tedium of having to set the containers' times individually). The control panel is divided into zones, one row for each container and 8 columns for each row. These columns are identified by stylised logos, eggs, green vegetables, fowl, fish, etc. Each time the button for a particular container is pressed the control panel increments one position along the display and a suggested cooking time for that type of item is displayed at the right-hand end of the row. These suggested times may be changed using 2 buttons, 'increase' and 'decrease' and may be stored for future use. To begin cooking a button with a stylised puff of steam is pressed and this lights up in an attractive blue to show the steamer is in use.
There is a water reservoir, which may be filled, or topped up during steaming, using a pull-out channel at the right-hand side of the unit. This is very convenient when steaming items that take a long time, such as corn cobs. A water gauge is visible on the front of the unit to check water usage.

So far, very good but what are the disadvantages? The unit is plastic which could mark if treated roughly, but it is no less durable than most kitchen appliances. It is a steamer so it needs to be used in a ventilated area. Steam is hot and it can be tricky to remove trays from the unit as they are fairly snug, so wear oven gloves to protect your hands. It can be a little tricky to clean thoroughly, too, but it is dishwasher safe. It does not have a power switch, so needs to be unplugged for storage and when cleaning (I think this is a good safety feature).

I have been using this steamer for months and it is not showing any signs of deterioration, unlike the previous unit from another manufacturer. This is a good purchase, so buy it.
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on 14 January 2010
This is a good quality steamer, one of the best items in my kitchen. In comparison with other steamers it is a rigid quality build and you can give every product the correct time it needs to achive the best result.
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on 7 June 2010
I bought this steamer 5 months ago and I have used it several times.

Pros: The whole meal finishes at the same time.
Three different compartments for different types of food.
Food tastes really good without the need of adding fat
Once food is put in place, you can relax until the food is ready

Cons: The time you save while cooking you will spend it cleaning this product. Unless you have a dishwasher, stay away from this steamer, it takes forever to clean this plastic containers, it's almost the equivalent of washing 5 pots with their lids.
If you don't use aluminium foil to cook kitchen pieces, the juice container will be full and the juices will drop into the water container that will start to burn and smell very bad. Also if you don't use aluminium foil to cook fish or other meats it will take you forever to clean the product.
The containers are not sturdy, so if you drop them, they will break.

At the end, I'm not tha disappointed, but I will the materials will be more sturdy and that it will be easier to clean. The idea of cleaning the machine after using it makes me think twice before using it. If you buy it, it helps to put all the containers to soak on hot and soapy water to clean them, the instructions say to use warm water, but you will need very hot water to clean those plastic containers.
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VINE VOICEon 4 January 2009
Most of the other reviews here tell you just how good this steamer is - and I don't wish to challenge them. It is a good product that helps you cook a whole meal in seperately controlled compartments. It certainly gets used in our kitchen more often than its predecessor. However (and you knew this was coming didn't you!) a few facts to make you hesitate:

1. I agree that, for the money, the product should be better made. Stainless steel would really help to make this a premium product. As it is I think that the unit will easily get damaged or start to look tatty. I also think that the plastic compartments are not very durable and will need replacing because of the sort of cracks that plague cheaper steamers!

2. One area where the steamer just isn't intelligent enough is in cooking times. Carrots, and other veg, vary considerably in how much steaming they need - and if, like me, you are often finding that some veggies need just a few more minutes of steam, then you will find changing the cooking times, mid-steaming, quite difficult. A really intelligent 'Intellisteam' steamer would allow you to add extra minutes to the undercooked veg and put the others on 'keep warm' for the duration when they finished earlier than the others. It doesn't seem possible to do this - and its an obvious point of improvement for the next model.

3. Finally. The thing that annoys me most of all about this steamer is that it doesn't have a power switch! If, like me, you have to have the plug in a difficult to reach socket stuck behind something else then you will regularly be cursing the false economy of leaving a simple on/off switch off the unit.

Of course you may be able to live with these shortcomings - and it is essentially a good steamer that helps you steam whole meals (almost) to perfection! Now that the price is falling its certainly not a bad buy - until a Mark II in stainless steel comes along!
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VINE VOICEon 16 January 2009
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I had been meaning to get a steamer for ages but was put off by my inexperience at timing how long different items would take to cook in one, so was excited to hear of this one with its preset timers which make it fairly idiot-proof - with just a few button presses you can coordinate a whole meal brilliantly, and don't end up with cold peas while your broccoli is still cooking, for example... It is also fab at cooking rice, and you can even do sauces, pasta etc in it all at the same time (and timed to perfection) since there are multiple sections, so there's no need to have several pans going at once. You can even "boil" eggs in it!

As other reviewers have said, it would have been more aesthetically pleasing had they upgraded the plastic material to stainless steel, but then again that would probably bump up the price rather a lot, and mine hasn't accrued any damage as yet.

Obviously if you're a major fan of cooking then there are better ways of preparing meals, but if you're hopeless in the kitchen like me then this is a brilliant machine, and I recommend it highly.
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on 18 February 2010
I love it, it does a very good job and I am sure I will be useing it to live more healthy and save up some time not used in the kitchen and when it comes down to it, what is our time worth?

I would recommend it very much, if you wish to live healthy and do it easy peacy!
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on 20 April 2010
I have used electric steamers for some 10 years and when it was time to replace my last one decided to but something a bit more sophisticated and with baskets that could go through the dishwasher (yes I am that lazy!). I held off buying this for many months due to its price, but eventually Amazon were selling it for just over half price and I splashed out. As a steamer it is great; it steams food well and evenly. I have used it for chicken, fish, potatoes, vegetables, even my mini christmas puddings that I made this year. I already knew it was large as I had checked it out in a store before buying it online, so the size of it didn't phase me. However it takes up a huge amount of space in the dishwasher, especially the tray that collects the juices. That now gets washed by hand (although it also is too large for my kitchen sink!) It is also quite unwieldy when you want to use the hot collected steamed juice / water from this tray in your gravy, and the only way to do it is to ladle the liquid out rather than tip it out as I used to with previous steamers. My biggest gripe however is the quality of the plastic. I have only owned this steamer since mid-August and it only gets used during the colder months - so not a huge amount of use so far. In early December I had to contact them regarding the water that had collected in the lids and which could not be removed (2 of which appear to be slightly warped anyway). They wanted a copy of my receipt which unfortunately I cannot find (typical - the only one I can't), and will not accept the serial number as sufficient proof of the steamer's age. I have tried asking Amazon for a copy of my receipt, without success. This weekend I found that one of the baskets now has a crack in the base. I have only ever washed the baskets on the top rack of my dishwasher (as per the instructions) and it has never been dropped etc so there is no reason for the plastic to have failed so early in its use. I have now contacted Morphy Richards again to see if we can make progress. Great steamer? Definitely. Good quality? Debatable
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VINE VOICEon 20 November 2008
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The Intellisteam Steamer is incredibly easy to use and the food, especially vegetables, really does have a stronger flavour although, like a microwave, it obviously doesn't brown stuff like fish in the way you might like. I've been using a few weeks almost every day and haven't been tempted to return to pots and pans once.

The controls are more or less idiot proof, with a range of pre-set cooking times designed to enable cook to put a whole meal on in a couple of minutes without having to think. That's great for someone like me, whose cooking expertise barely extends beyond heating something that comes in a packet. Given that's where I'm coming from, I'm used to manufacturers underestimating cooking times and Morphy Richards are a little guilty here. It takes some experimenting to get your steamed spuds just right. But once you're there you can set the cooking times in for life so steaming quickly becomes hassle free.

It cooks rice particularly well.

I'm cooking for two and the Intellisteam Steamer is just right, but I suspect cooking for a family of four, say, might be a little more challenging as it's quite a small unit.
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on 9 August 2009
We are retired folks and have for decades followed the sensible way of cooking veggies - by steaming. Our trusty three tiered pot ensemble has been updated twice so far - and with a recent holiday break - self catering, my wife had the use of an electric steamer for the first time. And so, it came to pass that I hosted her a 'top of the range' Intellisteam(er)
She mastered the simple logic panel and luxuriated in being able to preprogramme for the various contents, ready all at the same time and with plenty of latitude on serving.
Okay - so - what is with the 'BUT' in my appraisal?
We don't 'do' dishwashers. Only us two in the home - she washes and I dry. Simple and a long time habit. From two pots (usually) and a lid from the old steamer ... we now have to attend a multiplicity of plastic containers and fittings (approximately twelve!) and empty the base and dry it thoroughly (note it starts 'scaling up' from day one!!)
So - friends, 'Labour saving' is is NOT! And trust me, ageing hands having to dab, wipe remove smears . . . isn't an easy task.
So, before rushing to provide this as a gift to your 'elders' spare a thought for the 'no dishwasher' followers.

NOTE: After four weeks and about twenty sessions - one of the three power generators (These heat and steam into the compartments) failed. Investigation reveals that this is not UNCOMMON. Amazon - as always reliable, refunded promptly. Thanks guys!
We've settled for a Kenwood three tier unit. Not as fancy - but hopefully it'll last more than a month! STAR RATING REMOVED !!!!
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