Bain Marie or Water Bath

Is a cooking technique where one container with food to be cooked is placed in another. Larger pan containing water that is at the simmering point. This method of cooking surrounds the food with very gentle heat and is used for cooking delicate dishes like custards or white sauces, or melting chocolates. A bain-marie is the best way to cook or heat a preparation gently without risk of burning.

  1. Find two pots where one will fit into the other. The smaller one, when placed inside the bigger one, should not touch the bottom of the bigger one.
  2. Fill the big pot halfway with water.
  3. Place a 3 - 5 cm high sheet metal ring in to the bigger pot. This will help the small pot to sit perfectly.
  4. Put the little pot into the big pot. The desired water level depends on what you're heating. Some recipes will call for having the water in direct contact with the bottom of the small pot, others will not.
  5. Heat the big pot until the water boils. The boiling water will transfer heat to the smaller pot. This can be done on the stove top or in the oven.