Published at Sunday, December 08th 2019. by Ethan in Kitchen Appliances.
My new stove changed my life, and I'm not kidding. After a decade of constant struggle with an ancient Amana range (just like the ones Monty Hall used to give away in the 1970s on "Let's Make a Deal!"), the final blow came on Thanksgiving. I put the lovingly stuffed 20-lb. turkey in the oven and set it at 325 degrees, only to find, after hours of basting and checking meat thermometers and fiddling with the dial, that for some inexplicable reason the oven wouldn't work at any temperature lower than 350 degrees.
Leave the chest units out of sight. Not that there's anything wrong with the reliable standby for freezing freshly caught fish, the summer berry harvest or loads of casseroles for maternity leave. But chest freezers are just not attractive enough to look at in the kitchen, so don't count on them as an integral part of your design.
For many of us, our coffee maker is often the one appliance that gets used the most. If you're ready to up your at-home coffee game, you might want to consider a Nespresso. This pod-based espresso/cappuccino maker is easy to use, makes delicious coffee, and looks pretty snazzy sitting out on your counter. If there's anything that can break a daily Starbucks habit, this might be it.
While online restaurant supply houses bring in goods from splatter covers and barbecue spatulas to cases of wine glasses, a few of the more modest-size items also seem to fly off the websites, both because they're better quality and because they look like the stuff used by "real" chefs and caterers.
What's your cooking style? If you do lots of stir-frying or heat large quantities of food, you'll want at least one high-heat element or burner, as mentioned above. Many ranges include a wok ring, which sits on top of the burner grate to hold a wok. If you simmer lots of sauces, you'll want a "simmer burner," which cooks at a low temp. Check with the manufacturer on these; "a simmer technically is 190 degrees," Franke says, and some low-heat burners are really warming burners because they maintain a 150-degree temperature, which is fine for keeping a dinner warm but not for simmering your gravy.
You can get more options than you've ever imagined in a new range, from a stove that actually keeps food cold then turns itself on and cooks it, to one that includes a microwave drawer as well as an oven. Features that used to be considered premium are now standard on many ranges, including smoothtops, sealed burners on gas cooktops and self-cleaning ovens. Even stainless-steel finishes, which continue to be in high demand, have dropped in price according to Consumersearch.com, a website that evaluates product reviews from a wide variety of sources.
Always read the fine print and forget about those super-hot commercial ranges — that's the advice of restaurant equipment suppliers for consumers who want to save money on pro chef-quality kitchen gear by ordering online. While purchasing true restaurant equipment at a discount price may sound like an easy choice, you actually need to be more careful about what you buy.
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