If you thought heating, grilling and basic baking was the only task a microwave oven could carry out, then you are under-utilising the appliance and are unaware of its utility. The small appliance can help you have perfect poached eggs, rehydrate stale bread, toast nuts and spices and do a lot more.
If you are in the market to buy a new microwave oven, you’ve probably by now understood that the range of models and options can be confusing. What is the best size and power capacity for your needs? Here are a few things you need to keep in mind when scouting for the best microwave for your kitchen. How does a microwave convection oven differ from a conventional microwave?
There are three kinds of a microwave oven – Solo microwave oven, Grill microwave oven, and Convection microwave oven. The Solo microwave oven is mostly used for re-heating food, defrosting frozen food items, and cooking simple food like ready-made meals. The Grill microwave is similar to the solo microwave oven but comes with grill options as well as grilling accessories that can be used together while cooking. The convection microwave oven can be used for cooking, defrosting, preparing food along with many baking options.
Here are a few things to keep in mind while buying a microwave oven:
- Turntable – The turntable feature comprises a revolving glass plate that keeps turning to ensure that the food is cooked evenly. This comes in most microwave ovens that help in preparing food faster and evenly. The turntable glass plate can also be removed allowing users to remove and clean the glass plate when necessary.
- Automatic sensors – The automatic sensors in a microwave oven can detect whether the food is completely cooked or not. The automatic sensors measure the steam in the chamber to detect the food and how much of it is cooked. With microwave ovens that have automatic sensors, no timers are required to be set because the oven automatically shuts off when the food is fully prepared, thereby giving you fully cooked meals with the least amount of trouble for setting in timers where there are sure chances of the food being either undercooked or overcooked.
- Panel types – There are three types of panels on microwave ovens – Mechanical, Tact dial, and touch screen panels. Most microwave ovens come with mechanical and the Tact dial panels and the high-end models have the touch screen panel. The mechanical and tact dial panels are longer lasting although the touch screens are easy to use and will detect your finger and respond to touches faster. The tact dial and mechanical panel are more suited for everyday-use and rough use. In this field, users can choose the microwave oven according to their preference for the panels if they want a sophisticated one for their smart kitchen or just a basic one.
- Auto defrost – The auto defrost option in microwaves allows the users to automatically defrost the frosted food items without the users having to set any special program to defrost. The auto defrost option as the name suggests will automatically set the power level and the time needed to defrost the food. The user only needs to set the type and the weight of the item that needs defrosting.
- Power rating – The power rating of the microwave oven is also something to consider before buying a microwave oven. The power rating means the amount of power that a microwave oven consumes to cook your food or meal. The microwave oven that is of a larger size consumes more power which is around 1000 to 1600 watts and prepares your meal or food at a faster rate. The smaller ones however may take a longer time to prepare your meal which consumes lesser power from 800 to 1000 watts.
- Pre-programmed settings – The pre-programmed settings are mostly found in high-end microwave ovens. This option simply makes it easier for users to cook as the users need not set a timer or a power level to prepare a certain meal. The pre-programmed setting can help users prepare different meals by just selecting a pre-programmed setting.
The microwave oven comes in many different sizes and a user can always select the size based on the requirements and the number of family members residing in the house. The price is also a concern because some microwave ovens just have the basic features at a heavy price. Make sure if you buy a good microwave oven, the price will range between INR 10,000 to INR 20,000. Consumers might have to check their budget before going to purchase a microwave oven for their kitchen.