I don't have a double boiler, so what do I use when a recipe calls for one? Carole K. Bengston, Bloomimgton, MN Carol, I don't have one either! Place the food you're cooking (usually something like chocolate, custard, or a sauce) in a metal or other heatproof bowl over a smaller saucepan of simmering water.
If a recipe calls for a double boiler, there is rarely an alternative method. Cooks without this pan can improvise one with two sauce pans or a large pot of boiling water and a heat-proof bowl.
An alternative to a bulky double boiler by Matt on August 26, 2007 In my ever increasing quest for all things collapsible I came across an alternative to my wife's bulky double boiler.
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Do you want to try a recipe that requires a double boiler but don't have one tucked away in your cupboards? Here's a simple substitute you can make yourself and the items required are likely at your fingertips already… What you'll need: Small to medium-sized pot
Don't worry!! I don't have one and my banana pudding has to be cooked in a double boiler. I use my deep saucepan and fill a little over half full of water and then put a smaller saucepan in the top - kinda "float" it on top of the boiling water.
Although the terms are often used interchangeably, the double boiler and bain marie are two separate tools for gentle heating. The double boiler provides heat through steam alone, and is often used to cook delicate sauces or melt chocolate.
Basically, a double boiler is just two cooking pots. One goes on top, on the rim of the other, leaving a cavern of empty space in the lower pot. With some models, one pot is shallower than the other, and it sits on top of the bottom one, dipping down into it a little but still leaving empty space between them.