Sunday, January 23, 2011

NuWave: it's not just for music anymore

NuWave cooker
with Optional
 Big Orange Extension Cord
I was sceptical when my mother-in-law ordered a NuWave cooker off of TV. We already have a perfectly usable oven, plus a little gas grill for outside, and the NuWave's claims seemed to good to be true:
"The NuWave Oven cooks food up to 50% faster than a conventional oven through its patented 3-Way cooking method: Infrared-Conduction-Convection; INFRARED radiant heat penetrates food from the inside out leaving food moist and flavorful. CONDUCTION applies heat directly to the food enhancing browning, roasting and flavor. CONVECTION circulates heat evenly around food for faster cooking and even browning. The NuWave Oven Pro is powered by a 1500 Watt Sheath Heater that can last up to 30 years without service. ..."
But it turns out that the cooker works very well for us. We don't have to crank up the whole oven to cook, which saves energy and money. It's very convenient to stack up meat and vegtables in a pattern that uses one to baste the other as they cook, so that assembling a complete meal takes very little time.
And with the use of a heavy orange extension cord, it cooks just find on a little table outdoors! We don't use the little gas grill anymore, except perhaps when a party has too many people for the one oven to feed conveniently. It's just too easy to plug in the NuWave, stack up the food, pop a beer and wait for dinner to be ready!
I was inspired to write this by this week's Change the World Wednesday Challenge
This week, if possible, try cooking a meal outside over a clean, Eco-friendly fire.
Or ..
If you are unable to cook outside, or if it's just too cold, please cook at least one day's meals using energy-efficient methods (table top appliances such as crock-pots, electric skillets, etc.). Do not use the stove or oven.
Or ...
If you are already cooking meals in an energy-efficient way, please share information and suggestions on how we all can do better.
I do like to cook outdoors, but would have a hard time justifying our little gas barbeque on environmental grounds. Fortunately, the NuWave runs off electricity, which in our state is mostly from renewable falling water, although some comes from less benign sources. Until we can get solar panels installed on our south-facing roof, we'll have to hope the economies of scale of using utility-based electricity makes our cooking with this gadget more carbon efficient than our other options.

P.S. I also love to use our crockpot, both to save energy and to minimize food waste. Bone Soup will please your palate AND your wallet!

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