Induction Cook Top

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Published: 06th June 2012
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Planning a kitchen remodel means there will be plenty of options to choose from and a large number of decisions that need to be made respecting the design and function of each aspect of the new kitchen. Appliances have always been somewhat conventional, and homeowners have had to do little more than settle on a particular brand, color or optional feature in order to make their choices. One of the most important appliance decisions is the oven and range that you will use to cook your meals, but the variety has traditionally been pretty limited. Fortunately, homeowners are no longer limited to the two standard choices when it comes to cook tops, as the line of cooking appliances and methods of heating food now includes a third option, induction heating. Induction heating is quickly gaining popularity as costs have gone down and demand has gone up, and a kitchen remodel is the perfect time to look at adding induction heating to your home.

The vast majority of American households still use gas and electric cook tops because they're the most identifiable and well known cooking method available. Those homeowners looking for a more efficient way to prepare food than gas or electric heating will find induction heating to be a welcome alternate because it relies on electric currents, rather than a flame, to heat. Because only the magnetic elements within the pot or pan are affected, induction heating transforms any metallic cookware into a useful cooking device. On the other hand, gas and electric cook tops rely on transfer heating, or warming the air around the pot or pan, which is transferred to the cookware, and induction cooking actually modifies the magnetic current of the cookware when the metal is near the cook top. This method of cooking has the added advantage of not affecting most non-metal objects and devices, including hands and fingers, for safer cooking.

Induction cooking requires the restricted use of full metal pots and pans that are magnetic. Good examples of magnetic metal cookware that most homeowners already own are flat bottomed cast iron and stainless steel because they will heat all the way through, while aluminum and copper cookware will likely be damaged or even ruined by induction heating. Fortunately, metal pots and pans are already in the majority of kitchens, so buying new cookware won't be necessary. But if you don't have magnetic metal pots and pans, finding and buying them is easy and inexpensive and they'll come in handy in any kitchen remodel as you design your new layout with all new cookware and a better and more efficient way to create family meals.

Those that are the most enthusiastic supporters of widespread residential induction cooking like to point out how efficient and cost effective the method is, but even supporters will admit the efficiency will probably take some getting used to for most people. Because very little energy is lost in the heating and cooking process, food is cooked at a much quicker rate, not to mention more thoroughly, because the entire pot or pan is the cooking vessel. This means cooks will not be able to leave a pot of water to boil for more than a few seconds and induction cooking will encourage enhanced vigilance during cooking. The biggest difference that induction cooking provides is that it completely eliminates cold spots on cookware because the entire pan is magnetically transformed, which means delicate sauces and other foods will cook evenly and at the exact temperature you set for precise dishes. Induction cooking has the insightful benefit of keeping the kitchen cool during cooking because the air isn't heated and energy goes only to the cookware and the food. Homes that don't have a nearby gas line to use or don't want to use an electric range find induction heating to be a great asset to the kitchen.

Despite all of its other benefits, the feature of induction heating that is most attractive to many households is its safety. The induction cook top affects only magnetic, metallic pots and pans, which means even the surface of the cook top is cool to the touch and moving a hot pot away from the surface allows it to rapidly cool. Households with young children appreciate this condition the most because curious fingers are less likely to be burned. In addition, induction heating is almost instant and pots and pans don't need to be left on the cook top to warm up or wait for water to boil, meaning less time cooking and less chance for injury or accidents. Induction cooking is a good way to make cooking with children easier, safer and less stressful, getting dinner on the table in minutes and keeping kids safe.

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