Like braising and stewing, steaming is a moist heat cooking method that results in tender and flavorful turkey through the use of steam. Unlike braising and stewing, the meat is not actually placed in heated liquid, but is suspended above it. The meat is placed on a collapsible steaming basket, which is lowered into a pan and positioned above water that has been brought to a low boil. The unique construction of the basket allows the turkey to be suspended above the water level. Pots and pans designed specifically for steaming, which contain inserts for holding the food in place, are also available.
The steaming process is the same with both types of equipment: as the water boils, the steam rises and surrounds the meat with heat and moisture, cooking the meat until it is tender. It is best to use smaller cuts of turkey for steaming such as thinly sliced portions of the breast or thigh meat. Large turkey pieces, such as full legs or breasts do not fit well in the steaming basket.